Discussions By Condition: I cannot get a diagnosis.

ongoing symptoms w/ hypocapnia

Posted In: I cannot get a diagnosis. 9 Replies
  • Posted By: LowCo2Guy
  • May 23, 2007
  • 10:41 PM

Hello, I hope I can get some advice here. Let me lay this out for you as best I can. I'm 24, male. First I'll start with some symptoms that have been with me for 2-3 years that may or may not be important. 2-3 years I've had heart palpitations when laying down and a resting heart rate around 96, my heart pounds easily and I'm often aware of my heartbeat, this may be anxiety but I'm not sure because it happens when I'm mentally calm. I've also had free-moving palpitable lymph nodes around my neck for 2-3 years and some fixed lymph nodes near my groin around the hip joint for 2-3 years, along with general fatigue for all of this time. I have a pretty high tolerance for pain and fatigue, I've pretty much just lived with it - the neck lymph nodes may have been from tooth infection/root canal that I needed to have done, the entire nerve was almost dead by the time I went to a dentist. On my dentist visit with the dental X-rays he told me there was something wrong with my sinus' but that I should see a specialist about it. I never did because I never had sinus pain, I do have what I can best describe as a small swollen bar I can feel going across (inside) half my right cheek starting at the ear, the same on the left but not so swollen.. I always assumed these were sinus and they have never been painful. Also I have fairly bad teeth, I've had a lot filled but need more fillings. ok now on to present day One day a little over 2 months ago I started getting brief pain in my back and around my chest. Having been in a position years earlier where pneumonia went undiagnosed and winding up in the hospital to drain fluid, I went to the ER the next night when the sharp pains persisted and my fingers began tingling and muscles were weak. At the ER they did a chest X-ray, took blood, and monitored my heart. My heart was racing, but they didn't find anything immediately serious and it did slowed down eventually, Xray came up fine, EKG (heart test with the sticky pads and wires?) was fine. They also took arterial blood gas levels which showed by carbon dioxide levels were very low, there was plenty of oxygen. They told me I was probably hyperventilating and told me to make an appointment with my general doctor to check up, and gave me a prescription for 20 lorazepam, to reduce anxiety. The days to my appointment with my doctor were filled with the same occasional numbness and tingling, but the pain in the chest and back were less. I saw my doctor and told him about the ER visit and that the only thing they found odd was the low Co2. I told him the xray came up clear. He ordered a CT-scan with that fluid injection (I forget the name) of my lungs, he thought I had a clot or something along those lines. I had that done, it came up clear. My doctor wanted me to come back for another appointment. When I got there he said the scan of my lungs came up clear, he then asked me about family history of lung problems and what-not, then turned into a brick wall and wouldn't offer my any explanation for my symptoms. I still don't know why he scheduled a followup appointment if the clear CT-scan of my lungs was enough to convince him I was fine. Mind you he didn't take my blood gas again or examine anything else than my lungs, and on the followup he just listened to my lungs and took my pulse; my pulse was racing with palpitations. I simply wanted the discomfort to go away, as I work on the computer and when my hands go weak I can't work.. so no explanation or solution is unacceptable to me, this is affecting my life. Unhappy with the my doctor, I changed to another doctor who who came highly recommended. I scheduled an appointment. By this time a couple weeks went by, and in those weeks I started getting lots of burning sensations on my feet and hands, along with the side of my neck. My neck was also very stiff and the muscles felt pulled every day. Some days I'd wake up and try to lift my neck and there would be a bunch of cracks. This is on top of the weakness and nerve issues which I assumed by now was due to low Co2, which came up quickly, often after eating but pretty much any time.. relaxed or active it would strike at any time and last hours. I started paying attention to my breathing by now, taking seriously that it could be anxiety, but these attacks seemed to come on even when my breathing was normal and I was in a great mood and calm. I also had a few instance of my jaw cracking / hurting when I opened my mouth, around the time when my stiff neck was at its worst.. along with ear popping when I chewed, and I've had a click near my ear/jaw I hear when I try to jog, doesnt seem like a big deal, it's not painful. I saw the new doctor who suggested I see a neurologist for the burning sensations and finger tingling. I told him my blood works had been fine but he ordered another to make sure. He then suggested maybe it's anxiety, and gave me 10 xanax to take whenever it happened or started to happen. I felt good about this doctor because he was listening to my symptoms and seemed to want to get to the bottom of them, though I wasn't fully convinced it was anxiety; I've felt anxiety before and I've never had such extreme physical symptoms. He also had me do a 3 hour blood sugar test for hypoglycemia and diabetes testing. The blood work came back fine as I expected, both the normal one and the blood sugar tests. The xanax wasn't doing much except making me feel more tired and the "everything is ok" mood boost I guess you'd expect from it, but the weakness and what I think are low co2 effects persisted. The doctor said on the phone that I probably didn't need a followup with him and to keep taking the xanax. At this point I told myself it was all anxiety and that it would be ok, and that if there was something seriously wrong then the doctor would have noticed. The symptoms persisted but I told myself it was nothing to worry about and just ignored them best I could and sat back for hours whenever my hands were too weak to work. Then I started getting dull headaches, they lasted all day every day. I told myself they were probably tension headaches and that it could all be anxiety, so I ignored it all. A week afterwards I started getting spots in my vision. These were small spots in the center or near the center, the kind of spots you get from looking a lightbulb but persistant. Each would last a couple minutes but quickly replaced by another. These aren't floaters, I have plenty of those, these are like small spots of light. My eyes were also more sensitive to light impressions, as in white things started leaving light impressions (like when you look at a light and then away) but they wouldn't go away as fast.. mostly white/light things, or lights. Also what looked like sparks occasionally,a nd occasional blotches/bigger spots in my side view - not as common. The spots started off just a few hours a day, which is when I went to an eye doctor. They checked my retinas with the eye drops and everything and told me there was no retinal tearing, referring me to a retina specialist to make sure. The specialist also found nothing, did the same checkup with the drops, and said that because the spots were in both eyes it could be a neurological thing or something with the connection from the eyes to the brain. He suggested I get an MRI and was going to send me for one, but from the root canal I mentioned earlier I have the tip of the dental tool stuck in my tooth.. so he didn't make it because he wasn't sure if it was safe. At this point I wasn't sure what to do. The closest neurologist appointment I could get was 1-2 months away. I decided to wait it out, telling myself it was some freak occurance of spots in my vision and nothing more. The spots got worse, becoming a problem for almost all of the day, the all-day head tightness/dull headache where it hurt when I moved my head around persisted, as did the random onsets of low-Co2-like effects on my arms and legs. At this point I -was- starting to get lots of anxiety, I was worried about my eyesight (and still am), I was frustrated at my inability to work, and as much as I told myself it was all anxiety I doubted I was hyperventillating every day while I was calm. I didnt want to go back to my general doctor because I figured I'd just look like an anxious person, but as the spots got worse. I started getting ear pain and kept waiting. As the ear pain got more pronounced and I was getting occasional reduced hearing in my left ear along with some throat soreness I figured at the very least he'd see something in my ears so it wouldn't be for nothing. I thought maybe these were allergies or some other unimportant problem, even though I've never had seasonal allergies before.

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9 Replies:

  • Clearly, you are not going to get a diagnosis soon. May I recommend reading some very similar threads here, see what has been written to others? Perhaps starting with http://forums.wrongdiagnosis.com/showthread.php?t=12972 and http://forums.wrongdiagnosis.com/showthread.php?t=15357 and also http://forums.wrongdiagnosis.com/showthread.php?t=9052 .. and http://forums.wrongdiagnosis.com/showthread.php?t=15263 - please.
    Curly Stooge 319 Replies Flag this Response
  • -continued- (max characters reached) So I scheduled another appointment. He said I had fluid behind my ears but that it was nothing to worry about, told me I should try claritin. He saw fluid/mucus draining in the back of my throat. He also took my pulse, twice, and then asked me about my heart and family history. I told him what I did before, that I have had palpitations for a couple years now, but that there wasn't really any family history that I knew of. He didn't seem concerned after that. He felt my neck when I told him it was stick for 2+ weeks and said there was a knot or something, my neck movement was limited and my one or two of my back muscles were also spasmed/knotted up. I should mention he has a degree or whatnot in neck/back problems so I don't doubt his opinion that it's not a big deal.. I guess I've been spraining my neck every night or something. I told him about the spots in my vision, as this was now the most important symptom to me to get solved since it's hard to read when I have a spot blocking but he didn't comment, I asked him many times throughout the appointment but he was more interested in helping me reduce my anxiety. At the end of the appointment he said I should try to relax and forget about my symptoms, which was when I was as blunt as possible with him, that I try to ignore them but I can't when the spots are stopping me from reading and the weakness/low-co2-like effect stops me from using my mouse on the computer.. that my thinking has taken an obvious turn because for the past couple weeks since the dull headaches started I felt out of it, depersonalization I think it's called, and just overall like my brain was clouded up. I asked him what to do and that the eye doctor couldnt send me for an MRI, he told me about CT scan with the fluid (what I had on my lungs, but for my head), but didn't refer me for one.. I don't know if he was just giving useful info, but the entire appointment seemed like I was being put into the anxious-patient pile where all my symptoms are somehow a product of anxiety.. though he never commented about the spots, and I'm fairly sure anxiety can't cause such visual disturbances. He seemed to avoid anything that couldn't be an obvious cause of anxiety. I walked out of the appointment, though happier than my last doctor since this one actually talks to me for longer than 1 minute, fairly unhappy that I was stuck with my symptoms again. As much as I wanted to tell myself it's all anxiety, and believe me I tried, the eye spots and low-co2-effects while my breathing seemed fine just give me the feeling that it can't be anxiety.. it's hard to convince myself with these and the fact that I keep getting more and more symptoms. So from that time until now I've had the same weakness symptoms, sometimes a lot worse than before, and now sometimes followed by painful hands/feet and the veins feeling like they are being stabbed at when touched or flexed.. I assume because low co2 causes the blood vessels to constrict. I also now have 4 or 5 veins that are somewhat swollen and hard going across the right side of my head, starting above the ear and going to just behind the ear, the other side isn't like this, and I'm noticing a lot more spider veins on my body, like my fingertips and hands. I'm having occasional sharp pain at the base of the back of my skull, I've assumed this is neck pain.. and occasional boring ache on the right side top of my head. The spots were almost completely gone for a 2-day peroid, which the exception of maybe an hour on each day and in the morning. Yesterday I had a horrible low-co2-like attack when i was calm and listening to music and trying to type an email, my hands went numb with tingling, and I had a lot of pin-stabbing like pain in many places of my body.. I assume its the veins constricting.. I wasn't able to do anything except sit limp in a chair waiting for it to pass, had swollen feet, it never did pass and I eventually laid down and slept, and woke up 16 hours later with painful hands. Just trying to get through the days now, and trying to forget about these symptoms when i can.. I'm even trying to get used to the blind spots / light spots. Things get worse even when I forget about it. I have a neurologist appointment in a month but with the recent episodes I'm getting a little scared. I don't feel I can make an appointment with my general doctor again because it's the same symptoms a bit worse and if it's like the last appointment he will likely suggest anxiety and not acknowledge that these symptoms are taking over my life and now allowing me to work. As a web designer it's very hard to work on design with spots in my vision and code php with weak hands, my eyes and hands are my two most important body-tools. Here are some descriptions of my symptoms: "low co2 symptoms" - Stiff/weak hands, arms, legs. Nerve shocks, like when touching the wrist lightly a shock goes by my hand, same for ankles. My thoughts are that low co2 is causing my blood vessels to construct, and that this make the nerves not work as well, causing the shocking and pins and needles along with numbess, and that any chest pain is probably my lungs just being tired from low co2.. my chest pains have been rare for over a month now though so I'm not concerned about my lungs. Dull headache - it's not usually an active headache, as in when I'm very still it's not very noticable. It's a headache more of if I shake my head no, or nod my head yes, or turn to look at someone it hurts. Head feels full. This was persistant for 2+ weeks, the past days it has only been there maybe half the day. Feeling "out of it" - what I think is called depersonalization, feeling like you're floating through life, half asleep. I had this for an entire week, and maybe more. My thoughts are this might be because of low co2 = less oxygen in my brain.. or caused by anxiety from my other symptoms. Increased heart rate?? - I can't tell because my resting heart rate is somewhat high and races often. Spots in vision - Small blind spots / solid light spots in center and around the center of my vision. Occasional blotches in side vision. Have been a couple days while the are less. Sometimes they seem to come when I stand up, turn my head, or start the excercise.. but this might not be the case. I dont' know what to make of it. Low oxygen tranfer because of low co2? neurological problem? I don't think it's migraine since it persists all day, and even migraine aura w/out the extreme headache doesnt last that long. Some kind of pressure on my eyes? Could claritin in any way be responsible for reducing the eye spots ? - I've had good and bad days on it.. the bad days being when the spots are there an very noticable most of the day, good days they are occasional. Pain in ears / whatever sinus problems: Pain in ears goes away with claritin, and I breath better through my nose than I have been able to in over 2 years. I'm not concerened about these as much and think maybe they are unrelated.. though my dentist's xray from a few years ago is on my mind, I never saw a sinus doctor about what was supposedly wrong on those xrays. constant fatigue: explains itself I guess, and could be caused by anything including anxiety and stress, I'm sure most people have this every now and then. it only concerns me with the other symptoms. Now about my daily activities, because I dont want to make it seem like I can't walk or am stuck in bed: Excercising.. I'm able to excercise, just as long as I'm not having a really bad low-co2 effects or am hit by a really bad state of fatigue. I've had pains in my head when excercising but they were in the back and I think this is just my stiff neck. My heart goes to like 180 bpm but of coarse that's the point of exercising :) Eating: I rarely get hungry, this has been the case for 2-3 years.. I think I just lost my sense of hunger a while ago for some reason. I only get hungry after I excercise these days. That isnt to say I don't eat though :) I enjoy eating and definately eat enough every day. My weight has pretty much stayed the same and at least on the outside I'm pretty fit. I drink enough water too. So I'm here to ask for opinions, both on what might be wrong with me along with what I should do next.. given that I've already seen my general doctor twice and have a neuro appointment in 1 month. Should I wait it out? Could something more serious be wrong with me? Is there any possible way that I am hyperventilating while I think I'm breathing normally, if so how can I stop this, and can this cause visual problems like temporary blind/light spots? and could this daily low-co2 which I suspect may be responsible for many of my symptoms cause any real damage to my body? I admit that the first few times the low co2 brought numbness, sharp pin needle pains, light-headed woozyness like I was passing out, along with the constant light spots.. it likely triggered a panic attack of some sort. I've dealt with a lot of stressful situations in my life and I'm pretty good at differentiating anxiety vs physical, so what do I do if I have anxiety because of a real physical problem and a doctor that won't look past anxiety? I feel kind of stuck. I want to believe everything is ok, I have many times since this began, but it just seems to get worse with more symptoms, and I'm reluctant to do the doctor a third time because I think he has already decided I have anxiety and doesn't give me answers for my symptoms that arent typical of anxiety like the visual spots. Thanks for reading and I hope I can get some advice here. - sorry for the lack of paragraphs, the forum removed them
    LowCo2Guy 5 Replies Flag this Response
  • Also if anyone manages to get through the paragraphless posts, I just want to mention that I'm looking for rational mainstream medicine views, not alternative medicine and theories. Curly: I read those links and they aren't like my symptoms. Hypocapnia means reduced carbon dioxide, my muscles are not getting worse and worse.. they are simply weakened when my co2 gets low.
    LowCo2Guy 5 Replies Flag this Response
  • reduced carbon dioxide is also a symptom Curly above, is correct...the people on these threads are having similar symptoms and complaints. They may not be your exact scenario, but medically they are similar. Please look into info on ME/CFS you can google symptom checkers...find a good one and enter symptomsthat's how I found the info I've been searching for for years. Many in this forum have researched recommended info and are now taking info to their docs as it is the first time any of this is beginning to make any sense. Please consider if you are truly looking for an answer...as many have found theirs. this info is not alternative...it is rational mainstream medicine that is strangely growing in numbers from patients to researchers Best to you...mommy cat
    mommy cat 1654 Replies Flag this Response
  • Looking for views from others. Curly and mommy cat, you have a right to your views but you post them in every thread no matter what the symptoms are, I'm looking for more level headed replies that aren't running an 'ME' campaign.
    LowCo2Guy 5 Replies Flag this Response
  • If you have hypocapnia, that doesn't really go along with hyperventilation. That would lead to hypercapnia; however, your signs and symptoms do kind of sound like something called hyperventilation syndrome which is usually triggered by anxiety and can produce paresthesia in hands, feet, perioral area along with irritability, room spinning, passing out, pale skin, muscle twitching and weakness along with carpopedal spasm and cardiac arrhythmias. I would think you should get that MRI or CT and if neuro is also negative look into maybe somatization disorder????
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • December 12, 2007
    • 05:38 AM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • Just having a dental tip stuck in the root of a tooth would cause me to go to an oral surgeon. I wonder if you are having some kind of bacteremia. (blood poisoning). Have you had any lab work recently? Also, look up dental malpractice.
    rad-skw 1605 Replies
    • December 12, 2007
    • 11:56 AM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • Hello, I hope I can get some advice here. Let me lay this out for you as best I can. I'm 24, male. First I'll start with some symptoms that have been with me for 2-3 years that may or may not be important. 2-3 years I've had heart palpitations when laying down and a resting heart rate around 96, my heart pounds easily and I'm often aware of my heartbeat, this may be anxiety but I'm not sure because it happens when I'm mentally calm. I've also had free-moving palpitable lymph nodes around my neck for 2-3 years and some fixed lymph nodes near my groin around the hip joint for 2-3 years, along with general fatigue for all of this time. I have a pretty high tolerance for pain and fatigue, I've pretty much just lived with it - the neck lymph nodes may have been from tooth infection/root canal that I needed to have done, the entire nerve was almost dead by the time I went to a dentist. On my dentist visit with the dental X-rays he told me there was something wrong with my sinus' but that I should see a specialist about it. I never did because I never had sinus pain, I do have what I can best describe as a small swollen bar I can feel going across (inside) half my right cheek starting at the ear, the same on the left but not so swollen.. I always assumed these were sinus and they have never been painful. Also I have fairly bad teeth, I've had a lot filled but need more fillings. ok now on to present day One day a little over 2 months ago I started getting brief pain in my back and around my chest. Having been in a position years earlier where pneumonia went undiagnosed and winding up in the hospital to drain fluid, I went to the ER the next night when the sharp pains persisted and my fingers began tingling and muscles were weak. At the ER they did a chest X-ray, took blood, and monitored my heart. My heart was racing, but they didn't find anything immediately serious and it did slowed down eventually, Xray came up fine, EKG (heart test with the sticky pads and wires?) was fine. They also took arterial blood gas levels which showed by carbon dioxide levels were very low, there was plenty of oxygen. They told me I was probably hyperventilating and told me to make an appointment with my general doctor to check up, and gave me a prescription for 20 lorazepam, to reduce anxiety. The days to my appointment with my doctor were filled with the same occasional numbness and tingling, but the pain in the chest and back were less. I saw my doctor and told him about the ER visit and that the only thing they found odd was the low Co2. I told him the xray came up clear. He ordered a CT-scan with that fluid injection (I forget the name) of my lungs, he thought I had a clot or something along those lines. I had that done, it came up clear. My doctor wanted me to come back for another appointment. When I got there he said the scan of my lungs came up clear, he then asked me about family history of lung problems and what-not, then turned into a brick wall and wouldn't offer my any explanation for my symptoms. I still don't know why he scheduled a followup appointment if the clear CT-scan of my lungs was enough to convince him I was fine. Mind you he didn't take my blood gas again or examine anything else than my lungs, and on the followup he just listened to my lungs and took my pulse; my pulse was racing with palpitations. I simply wanted the discomfort to go away, as I work on the computer and when my hands go weak I can't work.. so no explanation or solution is unacceptable to me, this is affecting my life. Unhappy with the my doctor, I changed to another doctor who who came highly recommended. I scheduled an appointment. By this time a couple weeks went by, and in those weeks I started getting lots of burning sensations on my feet and hands, along with the side of my neck. My neck was also very stiff and the muscles felt pulled every day. Some days I'd wake up and try to lift my neck and there would be a bunch of cracks. This is on top of the weakness and nerve issues which I assumed by now was due to low Co2, which came up quickly, often after eating but pretty much any time.. relaxed or active it would strike at any time and last hours. I started paying attention to my breathing by now, taking seriously that it could be anxiety, but these attacks seemed to come on even when my breathing was normal and I was in a great mood and calm. I also had a few instance of my jaw cracking / hurting when I opened my mouth, around the time when my stiff neck was at its worst.. along with ear popping when I chewed, and I've had a click near my ear/jaw I hear when I try to jog, doesnt seem like a big deal, it's not painful. I saw the new doctor who suggested I see a neurologist for the burning sensations and finger tingling. I told him my blood works had been fine but he ordered another to make sure. He then suggested maybe it's anxiety, and gave me 10 xanax to take whenever it happened or started to happen. I felt good about this doctor because he was listening to my symptoms and seemed to want to get to the bottom of them, though I wasn't fully convinced it was anxiety; I've felt anxiety before and I've never had such extreme physical symptoms. He also had me do a 3 hour blood sugar test for hypoglycemia and diabetes testing. The blood work came back fine as I expected, both the normal one and the blood sugar tests. The xanax wasn't doing much except making me feel more tired and the "everything is ok" mood boost I guess you'd expect from it, but the weakness and what I think are low co2 effects persisted. The doctor said on the phone that I probably didn't need a followup with him and to keep taking the xanax. At this point I told myself it was all anxiety and that it would be ok, and that if there was something seriously wrong then the doctor would have noticed. The symptoms persisted but I told myself it was nothing to worry about and just ignored them best I could and sat back for hours whenever my hands were too weak to work. Then I started getting dull headaches, they lasted all day every day. I told myself they were probably tension headaches and that it could all be anxiety, so I ignored it all. A week afterwards I started getting spots in my vision. These were small spots in the center or near the center, the kind of spots you get from looking a lightbulb but persistant. Each would last a couple minutes but quickly replaced by another. These aren't floaters, I have plenty of those, these are like small spots of light. My eyes were also more sensitive to light impressions, as in white things started leaving light impressions (like when you look at a light and then away) but they wouldn't go away as fast.. mostly white/light things, or lights. Also what looked like sparks occasionally,a nd occasional blotches/bigger spots in my side view - not as common. The spots started off just a few hours a day, which is when I went to an eye doctor. They checked my retinas with the eye drops and everything and told me there was no retinal tearing, referring me to a retina specialist to make sure. The specialist also found nothing, did the same checkup with the drops, and said that because the spots were in both eyes it could be a neurological thing or something with the connection from the eyes to the brain. He suggested I get an MRI and was going to send me for one, but from the root canal I mentioned earlier I have the tip of the dental tool stuck in my tooth.. so he didn't make it because he wasn't sure if it was safe. At this point I wasn't sure what to do. The closest neurologist appointment I could get was 1-2 months away. I decided to wait it out, telling myself it was some freak occurance of spots in my vision and nothing more. The spots got worse, becoming a problem for almost all of the day, the all-day head tightness/dull headache where it hurt when I moved my head around persisted, as did the random onsets of low-Co2-like effects on my arms and legs. At this point I -was- starting to get lots of anxiety, I was worried about my eyesight (and still am), I was frustrated at my inability to work, and as much as I told myself it was all anxiety I doubted I was hyperventillating every day while I was calm. I didnt want to go back to my general doctor because I figured I'd just look like an anxious person, but as the spots got worse. I started getting ear pain and kept waiting. As the ear pain got more pronounced and I was getting occasional reduced hearing in my left ear along with some throat soreness I figured at the very least he'd see something in my ears so it wouldn't be for nothing. I thought maybe these were allergies or some other unimportant problem, even though I've never had seasonal allergies before.I have the exact same symptoms! I have a low CO2 level and My anxiety is usually when I sleep and awake around 3:30 feeling like I can't catch my breath. My neck is also stiff and sore. Dizzy spells also. What did the doctor finally tell you it was. Was it hypocapnia?
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • February 24, 2009
    • 05:29 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • Hello, I hope I can get some advice here. Let me lay this out for you as best I can. I'm 24, male. First I'll start with some symptoms that have been with me for 2-3 years that may or may not be important. 2-3 years I've had heart palpitations when laying down and a resting heart rate around 96, my heart pounds easily and I'm often aware of my heartbeat, this may be anxiety but I'm not sure because it happens when I'm mentally calm. I've also had free-moving palpitable lymph nodes around my neck for 2-3 years and some fixed lymph nodes near my groin around the hip joint for 2-3 years, along with general fatigue for all of this time. I have a pretty high tolerance for pain and fatigue, I've pretty much just lived with it - the neck lymph nodes may have been from tooth infection/root canal that I needed to have done, the entire nerve was almost dead by the time I went to a dentist. On my dentist visit with the dental X-rays he told me there was something wrong with my sinus' but that I should see a specialist about it. I never did because I never had sinus pain, I do have what I can best describe as a small swollen bar I can feel going across (inside) half my right cheek starting at the ear, the same on the left but not so swollen.. I always assumed these were sinus and they have never been painful. Also I have fairly bad teeth, I've had a lot filled but need more fillings. ok now on to present day One day a little over 2 months ago I started getting brief pain in my back and around my chest. Having been in a position years earlier where pneumonia went undiagnosed and winding up in the hospital to drain fluid, I went to the ER the next night when the sharp pains persisted and my fingers began tingling and muscles were weak. At the ER they did a chest X-ray, took blood, and monitored my heart. My heart was racing, but they didn't find anything immediately serious and it did slowed down eventually, Xray came up fine, EKG (heart test with the sticky pads and wires?) was fine. They also took arterial blood gas levels which showed by carbon dioxide levels were very low, there was plenty of oxygen. They told me I was probably hyperventilating and told me to make an appointment with my general doctor to check up, and gave me a prescription for 20 lorazepam, to reduce anxiety. The days to my appointment with my doctor were filled with the same occasional numbness and tingling, but the pain in the chest and back were less. I saw my doctor and told him about the ER visit and that the only thing they found odd was the low Co2. I told him the xray came up clear. He ordered a CT-scan with that fluid injection (I forget the name) of my lungs, he thought I had a clot or something along those lines. I had that done, it came up clear. My doctor wanted me to come back for another appointment. When I got there he said the scan of my lungs came up clear, he then asked me about family history of lung problems and what-not, then turned into a brick wall and wouldn't offer my any explanation for my symptoms. I still don't know why he scheduled a followup appointment if the clear CT-scan of my lungs was enough to convince him I was fine. Mind you he didn't take my blood gas again or examine anything else than my lungs, and on the followup he just listened to my lungs and took my pulse; my pulse was racing with palpitations. I simply wanted the discomfort to go away, as I work on the computer and when my hands go weak I can't work.. so no explanation or solution is unacceptable to me, this is affecting my life. Unhappy with the my doctor, I changed to another doctor who who came highly recommended. I scheduled an appointment. By this time a couple weeks went by, and in those weeks I started getting lots of burning sensations on my feet and hands, along with the side of my neck. My neck was also very stiff and the muscles felt pulled every day. Some days I'd wake up and try to lift my neck and there would be a bunch of cracks. This is on top of the weakness and nerve issues which I assumed by now was due to low Co2, which came up quickly, often after eating but pretty much any time.. relaxed or active it would strike at any time and last hours. I started paying attention to my breathing by now, taking seriously that it could be anxiety, but these attacks seemed to come on even when my breathing was normal and I was in a great mood and calm. I also had a few instance of my jaw cracking / hurting when I opened my mouth, around the time when my stiff neck was at its worst.. along with ear popping when I chewed, and I've had a click near my ear/jaw I hear when I try to jog, doesnt seem like a big deal, it's not painful. I saw the new doctor who suggested I see a neurologist for the burning sensations and finger tingling. I told him my blood works had been fine but he ordered another to make sure. He then suggested maybe it's anxiety, and gave me 10 xanax to take whenever it happened or started to happen. I felt good about this doctor because he was listening to my symptoms and seemed to want to get to the bottom of them, though I wasn't fully convinced it was anxiety; I've felt anxiety before and I've never had such extreme physical symptoms. He also had me do a 3 hour blood sugar test for hypoglycemia and diabetes testing. The blood work came back fine as I expected, both the normal one and the blood sugar tests. The xanax wasn't doing much except making me feel more tired and the "everything is ok" mood boost I guess you'd expect from it, but the weakness and what I think are low co2 effects persisted. The doctor said on the phone that I probably didn't need a followup with him and to keep taking the xanax. At this point I told myself it was all anxiety and that it would be ok, and that if there was something seriously wrong then the doctor would have noticed. The symptoms persisted but I told myself it was nothing to worry about and just ignored them best I could and sat back for hours whenever my hands were too weak to work. Then I started getting dull headaches, they lasted all day every day. I told myself they were probably tension headaches and that it could all be anxiety, so I ignored it all. A week afterwards I started getting spots in my vision. These were small spots in the center or near the center, the kind of spots you get from looking a lightbulb but persistant. Each would last a couple minutes but quickly replaced by another. These aren't floaters, I have plenty of those, these are like small spots of light. My eyes were also more sensitive to light impressions, as in white things started leaving light impressions (like when you look at a light and then away) but they wouldn't go away as fast.. mostly white/light things, or lights. Also what looked like sparks occasionally,a nd occasional blotches/bigger spots in my side view - not as common. The spots started off just a few hours a day, which is when I went to an eye doctor. They checked my retinas with the eye drops and everything and told me there was no retinal tearing, referring me to a retina specialist to make sure. The specialist also found nothing, did the same checkup with the drops, and said that because the spots were in both eyes it could be a neurological thing or something with the connection from the eyes to the brain. He suggested I get an MRI and was going to send me for one, but from the root canal I mentioned earlier I have the tip of the dental tool stuck in my tooth.. so he didn't make it because he wasn't sure if it was safe. At this point I wasn't sure what to do. The closest neurologist appointment I could get was 1-2 months away. I decided to wait it out, telling myself it was some freak occurance of spots in my vision and nothing more. The spots got worse, becoming a problem for almost all of the day, the all-day head tightness/dull headache where it hurt when I moved my head around persisted, as did the random onsets of low-Co2-like effects on my arms and legs. At this point I -was- starting to get lots of anxiety, I was worried about my eyesight (and still am), I was frustrated at my inability to work, and as much as I told myself it was all anxiety I doubted I was hyperventillating every day while I was calm. I didnt want to go back to my general doctor because I figured I'd just look like an anxious person, but as the spots got worse. I started getting ear pain and kept waiting. As the ear pain got more pronounced and I was getting occasional reduced hearing in my left ear along with some throat soreness I figured at the very least he'd see something in my ears so it wouldn't be for nothing. I thought maybe these were allergies or some other unimportant problem, even though I've never had seasonal allergies before. Just to see if you finally found out your condition and how it was treated. I have the exact same symptoms especially at night while sleeping. I will awake and can't catch my breath and panic! I also have a sore stiff neck as well. I have never even had a problem with anxiety or panic prior to now. Thanks!
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • February 24, 2009
    • 06:36 PM
    • 0
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