Discussions By Condition: I cannot get a diagnosis.

dizziness, vision disturbances

Posted In: I cannot get a diagnosis. 5 Replies
  • Posted By: Anonymous
  • February 20, 2008
  • 02:40 AM

I have had a problem for almost a year now. Last March I noticed that the flourescent lights in my school bothered me. Then one day I suddenly began to feel a sudden dropping sensation. When I was sitting in my flourescently lit classrooms sometimes I would get weird visual disturbances. Things just looked strange, for example, the speaker's eyes in the front of the room would often look strange.

The dropping/vertigo feeling got worse. I began to develop a panic response to it. I became somewhat agoraphobic and couldn't go to the store alone and without great effort. I went to a regular doctor, a neurologist, had an MRI, I saw an ear specialist and a very well qualified eye doctor, all normal. I saw a psychiatrist who diagnosed me with panic disorder NOS. This was at an emergency treatment setting until I could get to a regular psychiatrist. She gave me Ativan and that helped immensely. I saw the regular psychiatrist and he diagnosed me as having mild bipolar and put me on lexapro and lamictal. He also gave me some more ativan but wanted to decrease usage. I got down to where I was only taking it maybe once a month and doing fairly well. I really never felt any mood swings so I am not sure about that diagnoses now in retrospect. However, I was very irritable at times.

Now however things are much worse again. I am constantly dizzy with never a moment without it. It is not the vertigo like before, however sometimes it is worse than others, such as when I am moving around or under flouresecent lights. My breathing catches from time to time while I am inhaling. I have periodic spells where things just feel weird. I feel extremely irritable periodically. I do not feel anxious or depressed, except of course that I am concerned abot what is going on and really really really tired of being unwell. My health has been very good until this past year. No illness or disease, with the expection of migraines when I was younger. I have not had one in years now though. I am 36, have not had ativan for a few months now and am no longer taking Lexapro. I do not take any vitamins etc.

Does anyone have any idea what this could be?

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5 Replies:

  • You might want to check out a condition called Irlen Syndrome or scotopic sensitivity syndrome. Most doctors won't recognise this, since theres no test they can do for it, but it is becoming better known. It causes all the symptoms you describe and flourescent lighting makes it worse. It is a perceptual disorder characterized by sensitivity to light and high glare conditions which can make reading and other tasks difficult. It can be treated by wearing coloured tinted glasses. Here are some links for you to look at: http://www.irlen.com/http://www.irlenuk.com/
    Larkenn 20 Replies
    • February 23, 2008
    • 04:05 AM
    • 0
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  • Do you think these attacks could be aura associated with migraine, or silent migraine (no pain)?Also, another thing you may want to look into is thyroid disease, since people with migraines (and who were diagnosed bipolar, anxious, etc) often have underlying thyroid disorders. These may not be picked up by hormones alone and you may need thyroid antibody testing.Hope you get some kind of answer soon.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • February 24, 2008
    • 05:21 AM
    • 0
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  • you might want to get a photic stimulation eeg.Also sometimes the is mercury in fluorescent lights-i wonder if there could be any connection to your symptoms.Also as mentioned migraine might be a possibility.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • February 24, 2008
    • 00:52 PM
    • 0
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  • I was diagnosed with silent migranes.The aura i see looks like tiny pieces of colored glass like in a kalidiscope.They start off really small, then get bigger.Even if I close my eyes, they are still there.Sometimes they last for 5 minutes, sometimes 30 minutes.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
  • I have a ver similar condition. I was working one day and began to feel strange. I experienced distorted vision and had a falling sensation. I went to the hospital but by the time I got to see the doctor I felt fine. A week went by and I felt fine but then I experienced this again and it has never gone away since. For two years I have felt a strange feeling under flourescent lights. Distorted vision, A falling sensation and anxiety. Patterns make me feel uncomfortable and I experience bouncing vision while watching a tv or computer screen while chewing from a distance. I experience this at work, at school, at the grocery etc.. Basically anywhere there are flourescent lights. I also experience this feeling outside around dusk. The first doctor told me that I had an inner ear disorder. The next doctor disagreed and said it was migraine associated. Another doctor told me that it could be associated with epilepsy. The only thing that has helped is Ativan and it only helps with the anxiety. I have found that consuming alchohol makes the next day more difficult than usual. No test have proven anything and every doctor that I see disagrees with the rest.
    tburas21 2 Replies Flag this Response
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