Discussions By Condition: Medical Stories

hoping to rule out als

Posted In: Medical Stories 1 Replies
  • Posted By: Anonymous
  • November 13, 2007
  • 01:39 AM

Hi all,
I'm new here, and today happens to be my birthday...:) I'm 39.

I just came home from another doctor's visit. She wants me to see a neurologist before my appointment in March at the UAMS hospital in Little Rock, AR, if at all possible. Problem is, no medical insurance, all tapped out from the last surgery, waiting at least 4 months for disability ruling... can't afford it yet.

Brief History:
Had symptoms that pointed to MS, but no brain or spine placques visible on MRIs (without contrast) of brain and entire spine. They found some bulging discs, and a spinal cord impingement at c-5, c-6. Bones were growing inward, center, causing weakness in legs, pain, especially in shoulders and neck, etc.

Had surgery by very experienced neurosurgeon - discectomy and fusion, and he ground down the excess bone pressing on spinal cord. Before surgery, he disclosed that he was 90+% sure this would fix me, but if it didn't, it was most likely ALS. Imagery before surgery included aforementioned MRIs, CT myelogram, x-ray of neck, electromyelograph. (Please excuse any wrong spellings...)

Many symptoms cleared up after a speedy recovery. That surgeon has retired since... That was last summer ('06.)

Ankle clonus is somewhat reduced, but still present. Trembling in right arm present, and was getting worse. Numbness in right thigh turned to searing pain, from deep in the bone to the surface. Gait worsened again - walking sideways as if drunk, feet dragging. Falling down became more frequent. Still hyper-reflexive. Full body stiffens and jerks a few times periodically, especially just before and after awakening.

I went to my family doctor for relief, and she put me on Neurontin, Baclofen, and Vicadin. The gait is much improved. The right arm has mostly quit trembling, but still does occasionally, especially when cold. The pain is lessened somewhat, but still spikes to unbearable levels. Right leg is weak. She's increasing the dosage of Neurontin in hopes of reducing the pain. Gave me a steroid shot in right thigh today to see if it will stop the pain...

No difficulty with speech or swallowing.

I'd like very much to start ruling out anything I can, especially ALS! What other information is needed?


Reply Flag this Discussion

1 Replies:

  • Let me pose the question a different way.What are some diseases that mimic ALS, and how do their symptoms differ from it?:confused:
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • November 17, 2007
    • 06:23 AM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
Thanks! A moderator will review your post and it will be live within the next 24 hours.