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Is this MS?

I dont really know where to start with this. Symptoms I have been having: Aching legs every day, sometimes one leg at a time sometimes both at the same time, going on now since mid January 2013. Bum and leg numbness, also pins and needles in legs and feet, going on again since mid January 2013. Memory/foggy brain/confusion/clumsiness every day for year and half +. Extreme tiredness going on for more than 2 years and have it every day. The last 3 weeks upper arms are starting to ache as well. Getting up to go to the loo at night. Im 37, so dont think this hould be happening.

I had 2 MRI’s done since last Nov. It showed various disc bulges in my back, and also a small lump in my upper right thigh. The area where the lump is has been very painful at times and is swollen. As they were unsure what this lump was I was sent to a surgeon who I seen on Monday.

As my aches and numbness in my legs started since this lump was found, I presumed that it was the lump was causing the pain. According to the surgeon, no. He said even if he removed the lump my pains would still be there. They want the lump to grow before they even look at it.

So, what im asking is, are my symptoms anything to do with MS. The aching legs are terrible, I feel as if im having to carry them round with me, they feel so heavy.

I would appreciate any thoughts anyone has.

Hello and welcome :slight_smile: Working out what is causing possibly neurological symptoms is particularly tricky because there are an awful lot of conditions that present with very similar symptoms. This means that while your symptoms are found in MS, they might actually be due to any one of a number of other conditions. So, sorry, but I’m about to ask more questions than give answers :-/ Have you seen a neurologist? Have you had an MRI of your brain? What is your GP saying? Have you had a thorough battery of blood tests to rule out all the usual suspects (eg thyroid, vitamin deficiencies, etc)? Are any of your disc bulges pressing on the spinal cord or spinal nerves? (If yes, have you been referred to a neurosurgeon?) If any of the answers is no or I don’t know, then that’s where I would recommend you start. Unfortunately, very often these days we have to take the lead in finding out what is wrong and to stick at it until we get somewhere - a quiet patient is by default considered a happy patient :frowning: Karen x

Hi, and thanks for your reply.

In answer to your questions, I have not seen a neuro, have not had a brain mri. Had a brain x ray for cause of long term headaches, it was clear. Blood tests for vitamins and thyroid are all fine. One GP says ‘go to a and e if it doesnt get better’, the other says ‘he’s confused’.

This is what it says on pathology report regarding discs.

Disc dehydration is noted in the lower thoracic spinal disc and there is a left paramidline bulge at t6-t7. There is also a focus of type 1 modic change at the anterior superior end-plate of the t12 vertebral body. The t6-t7 where there is a paramidline bulge which indents the thecal sac anterior to the cord on the left side without evidence of significant canal lateral recess. Mild asymmetric sacroilitis also.

Legs and memory problems are the most troublesome. I forget names, faces, where im going, how to get to places, what ive just done seconds ago. Ive bought shopping in local town drove 4 mile home, forget i bought them and found them 3 days later in the boot. Ive done this 6 times. GP says there ‘maybe some mild cognitive impairment’ but took it no further. She does not like me, and thats putting it mildly, has got at me about the way i speak and has tole me to ‘feel free and go and get yourself another GP’ several times. I am at the point of giving up!!

Hi, and thanks for your reply.

In answer to your questions, I have not seen a neuro, have not had a brain mri. Had a brain x ray for cause of long term headaches, it was clear. Blood tests for vitamins and thyroid are all fine. One GP says ‘go to a and e if it doesnt get better’, the other says ‘he’s confused’.

This is what it says on pathology report regarding discs.

Disc dehydration is noted in the lower thoracic spinal disc and there is a left paramidline bulge at t6-t7. There is also a focus of type 1 modic change at the anterior superior end-plate of the t12 vertebral body. The t6-t7 where there is a paramidline bulge which indents the thecal sac anterior to the cord on the left side without evidence of significant canal lateral recess. Mild asymmetric sacroilitis also.

Legs and memory problems are the most troublesome. I forget names, faces, where im going, how to get to places, what ive just done seconds ago. Ive bought shopping in local town drove 4 mile home, forget i bought them and found them 3 days later in the boot. Ive done this 6 times. GP says there ‘maybe some mild cognitive impairment’ but took it no further. She does not like me, and thats putting it mildly, has got at me about the way i speak and has tole me to ‘feel free and go and get yourself another GP’ several times. I am at the point of giving up!!

I’m afraid that, if I were you, I would take that GP up on her suggestion and get a new one! I find it completely unacceptable for a GP to wash his or her hands of a patient because they are “confused” - surely the thing to do is to refer the patient to someone who won’t be confused?! And to shrug off possible cognitive impairment (no matter how mild) in someone who is clearly not old enough for this to be normal? Not on really; not on at all :frowning:

I’m confused about your brain x-ray btw. Was it just an x-ray or a CT scan?

I can’t see anything too serious in the MRI report, but I know more about the brain than I do the spine so I can’t be 100% sure. However, I definitely can’t see anything in the report that would explain all of your symptoms. I really do think that you need a referral to a neurologist. And it appears that the only way you are going to get this is if you get a new GP.

One thing: you mention headaches so if you have ever had a problem with thrombosis or embolism or you have suffered a miscarriage(s), then please ask about Hughes Syndrome. It is a mimic of MS that is strongly associated with headache. If this is a possibility, then you probably need a referral to an haematologist or rheumatologist rather than a neurologist.

Karen x

Hi, my brain x-ray was just an x-ray. The reason they done it was because I got hid on the side of the head in Nov 06 by a heavy door. Caught me on the bone that runs down where left eyebrow is. Only got the x-ray last year. I have six years of a pain in the head which i can pinpoint with my finger. It is about the size of a 5p. I can have it for months on end then it goes away then comes back again.

I was thinking that the pain in my legs had something to do with DVT, as the pain is worse in both calves, than anywhere else in the legs. Lots of cramping, 20+ years of it, cant tip my foot down to put on a shoe but cramps start. My mother has problems with her calves, she has had ulcers for years, veins removed etc. My doctor dismissed this.

Going to see GP tomorrow, but dont know why im bothering, always fobbed off with painkillers!!!

It almost certainly wouldn’t be Hughes unless you had definitely had DVT or similar or a history of miscarriage.

A brain x-ray is completely useless for investigating neurological conditions - you need an MRI.

My suggestion re GP:

Make a brief list of your most serious symptoms before you see her and then read out the list to her. Be firm in saying that you are not asking just for something to help them (although that would be welcome), you want to know what could be causing them, ie could there be an underlying condition? Tell her that you want to be referred to an appropriate consultant for them to be properly investigated.

Do not mention MS - if asked, it’s best to just say that you have no idea what’s going on and you want to see someone who can work it out and help you. Seeing as she and her colleagues don’t know what it is, you want to see someone who might.

Good luck!

Kx

Just been to the GP. Offered painkillers again. Done blood test. As I knew what year it was, what town I was in and where I was at, he said my memory was 100%. Said all this could be physiological.

I was up an hour this morning and the aching legs started. Ive had enough of b****y doctors.

Tootsey

have you thought of taking someone with you. A family member of friend re-iterating that you do have memory issues may help push your cause. Stress and anxiety can of course real neurological symptoms but then surely if that is what the GP supposedly thinks what is he doing about it? Paracetamol by itself is not going to resolve the issue. Sounds like you have a useless GP and need to get seen somewhere else.

Reemz

X

New GP needed I think. You could try speaking to the Practice Manager first, but I suspect it might be simpler to change surgeries :frowning: Kx