Discussions By Condition: Brain conditions

Pineal Cyst: Time for another MRI?

Posted In: Brain conditions 1 Replies
  • Posted By: Anonymous
  • November 20, 2009
  • 06:51 AM


First let me say that this forum has been a wealth of information for me. For some reason, it's always comforting to hear what others have said, especially the strength people show.

Like many on this forum, I have a pineal cyst. I was diagnosed in 2004. At the time of last imaging (3 years ago, MRI w/ contrast), it was 1.6x1.5x2.1 cm. It is obviously large enough to cause symptoms, which have generally included sensations of vertigo, vertical double vision, color "after-images" (Doctor could never explain this one: basically, certain colors leave an after-image of their inverse for a couple seconds; eg, yellow lines will leave a blue line in my field of vision for 1-2 seconds), and of course headaches.

Given the risks associated with removal (and the fact that I'm in a profession that requires all of my mental faculties), surgery was not an option. I did a 3-month follow-up of my first MRI with a different doctor, just to get a second opinion. No change in size, but he also agreed that surgery was indicated. I have had one subsequent MRI, completed 3 years ago (2006). After that, the Neurologist told me not to worry about it, and that the symptoms were things I'd have to live with.

Which brings me to my post. At first, let me state that it is incredibly hard to not consider that every possible symptom I have is somehow related to the walnut-sized thing in my brain. (I'm sure others have had the same feeling). It's scary. I've been doing a lot of exercises to calm myself down and refocus my stress away from the "oh crap, my cyst just exploded" thought.

The last three months I've noticed a slight "tremor" in my fingers, only when they are flexed. It's certainly not a tremor like one sees with Parkinson's (grandparent had it). More of minor shaking. At first, I passed it off as being due to caffeine. But it's continued to be there, even if I don't drink coffee or tea.

This last morning was what really put me off. I woke up, jumped out of bed, and nearly fell over. The room felt like it was spinning around me - I couldn't get my eyes to focus on a stationary object. This continued for...a minute? Maybe two? The rest of the day I've had a dull headache and felt generally "off" in terms of balance. It did not happen this morning, but I still feel slightly off-balance (in fact, I noticed that I had to watch my step a couple of times walking to work).

So: The question to the community is whether I should call up the Neuro and get another MRI done. I don't really feel like spending $400 out of pocket, but at the same time, this feels like it might be a more concrete sign that something is changing with that pesky cyst. Thoughts? Advice?

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  • Are you still around? If so, how has everything gone since?
    Anonymous 1 Replies Flag this Response
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