Discussions By Condition: I cannot get a diagnosis.

Meningitis and headache- please HELP!

Posted In: I cannot get a diagnosis. 12 Replies
  • Posted By: Anonymous
  • June 10, 2007
  • 04:54 AM

:( My 21 year old son has been ill for about 3 months. It began with upper abdominal pain and has progressed through a variety of symptoms such as blurred vision, headaches, nausea/flu-like feeling, foggy-head, insomnia, inner tremors/twitching, occasional diarrhea, hair thinning on top of his head, muscle aches after exertion, spitting up blood after exercise on a couple of occasions, low-grade fever a few times... He had mono 6 years ago, and a case of shingles about 31/2 years ago, chlamydia 4 years ago, severe virus's a couple of times, shigella 21/2 years ago. He has now had 3 CT scans, chest x-rays, stomach x-ray, upper GI, Blood checked at least 3 times, all STD checks negative.

Last sunday we had to take him to the ER with a severe headache- hurt so badly his legs were twitching on the hospital bed. He had the headache to a lesser degree for about 4 days. They did tests, including a spinal tap and said he had viral meningitis. Put him on IV fluids, antibiotics, and pain meds for 2 1/2 days and released him on Tuesday. He ended up back in ER by Wednesday pm because of severe back and head pain again. He was told they needed to do a "blood patch" because his pain was probably from the spinal tap, but they chose to give him caffeine IV's all night long instead for his headache. The anesthesiologist who does the blood patches said the procedure may make things worse. He came home Thursday with a scrip for vicadin and instructions to drink plenty of fluids and caffeine. It is Saturday night and he still has severe headache. Pain is on top left side of head, throbs, and he says he can feel his heartbeat in the throbbing. When he takes caffeine pills he says he feels a "popping" in his head after awhile and the pain lessens but does not go away.

He is going back to ER in early am when they are less busy for a re-check. We are trying to find someone who may know the following:

1. Was it BS about the blood patch making things worse???

2. Can you have meningitis for a period of three months with it culminating in severe illness toward the end, or is the incubation period short before illness hits? (which means something ELSE caused the meningitis)

3. How long does one have a severe headache with meningitis?? Or is the most probable cause of still having pain the spinal tap and spinal fluid leaking?

4. What tests should be run to check his spine and fluids??

PLEASE---any help you can give- my son is so depressed with the constant pain. And I am scared.
Thanx, MY sons mom

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