Help - I can't tell if this is MS or Anxiety

Hi everyone,

I am looking for some support as my anxiety and fears have completely taken over my life and as I have a 4 year old little girl and own my own business I need to try and get my head back in the right place.

A couple of weeks ago I developed Shingles (i am a 31 year old male) and I visited the doctor who gave me some anti viral meds. Since then I have developed a tingling in my left foot that will not disappear and is there constantly with my knee feeling weak. I called the doctor who asked if I have been fatigued (i replied yes) and he decided that I should see a neurologist as there can be a correlation between shingles and MS…basically he has terrified me.

I have since seen the neuro who at the meeting did lots of tests like tapping my knees and asking about my symptoms and looking in my eyes and he said it’s unlikely I have MS. He said ‘‘based on your history and being male you have a very little chance’’.

Since then my symptoms have got worse. I have been terribly dizzy and find walking difficult. I have pain in my left knee and seem to be walking with a bit of a limp. The constant pins and needles are still in my left foot and have been constant for the last week. I called the neurologist and explained the change in symptoms and he has now recommended a thoracic and lumbar spine mri scan looking for ‘’‘Myelitis with recent shingles, l5 left compression and Multiple Sclerosis with multiple neurological symptoms’

I am in bits and I am bursting into tears everytime I feel the symptoms. I really can’t tell if this is anxiety causing the dizziness and the pins and needles in my foot are back problems. Every time I move and walk around I feel dizy and I have to concentrate really hard on where I am placing my feet. I have also noticed my vision is really poor but I know anxiety can do that too.

Any help would be appreciated.


Ps I hope I have posted this in the right section. I realise many people on hear have been diagnosed and are living we MS and don’t mean to sound arrogant.

hi griffin

don’t worry about which section you have posted in.

we try to help anyone with a problem.

on the positive side you have an mri to come and that will give you more answers.

the neuro is not expecting it to be ms, so at least he or she will be able to advise whatever the results show.

if the worse case scenario happens and you are told that it is ms - it’s not the end of the world!

there are amazing new drugs coming out all the time.

meanwhile keep your gp in the loop so that recent symptoms are on your records.

maybe talk to gp about your anxiety if you feel it is becoming a problem.

carole x

1 Like

Thank you Carole,

I really appreciate your reply.

My two MRI’s of the spine have come back clear which I guess is good news though I still have to meet with the neurologist on Tuesday to confirm that. They think he will also order one of the brain next.

I just feel lousy. Today I have been so dizzy I can barely walk, I have like a pressure at the back of my head/neck and the tingling/numbness in my left foot is terrible. I have also found that my left hand is numb now and I have a tingling in my left arm.

I have avoided a&e for the past 10years but if the dizziness gets much worse I think I might have to go as i’m literally stumbling all over the place.

good luck for tuesday.

try a good B complex supplement as there are a lot of different B vits and they are all important.

The neurologist can usually have a good idea from a physical examination whether they think it’s likely to be MS or not. Obviously a physical exam isn’t infallible, so it’s possible that a brain MRI would show up a surprising result. It does seem very clear that your neuro was convinced it wasn’t MS when he ordered the spinal MRI. If he’d been in any doubt, he’d have done a brain MRI simultaneously.

When Carole suggested B vitamins, she has a point. Have you had all the more straightforward things tested, like Vitamins B (all varieties) and D?

You could also make an appointment to see your GP, you do seem to be very anxious (with good cause) but the GP might be able to help with the anxiety, whether it be a short course of therapy, maybe Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) or a drug of some kind to help. They could also arrange a load of blood tests, for vitamins, iron, full blood count, and just everything that could help to rule out some more straightforward diagnoses.

Best of luck.