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Sunnyme

Advice about seeing doctor

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Sunnyme

Hi,

 

I don't really know where to start, all I know is that I feel like I am going mad.

 

I have been having strange symptoms of something for nearly 10 years now. I have been to lots of different gp's over the years  and end up coming away more confused. I have only ever been offered blood tests which have always come back clear, although once a year it will show I have slightly low folic acid levels.

 

It started about ten years ago with pain in my hands (just after I had my first child). My hands hurt in a sort of cramp like pain when I am cleaning or writing. I can write around two sentences before I have to stop to stretch out my hand before I can carry on. I saw my dr about this and she just said 'well that doesn't seem like a problem' and didn't want to talk about it any further.

 

Since then my hands still hurt daily. Around a year or so ago my hand went into a sort of 'claw' like position and I couldn't straighten it out. This only lasted around a day or two. I have also had bladder weakness for around a year. At first I thought I may have had a urine infection. I feel the need to wee constantly, it reminds me of when I am heavily pregnant and the baby is pressing on my bladder (I am not pregnant!). 

 

I have also had trouble in my left foot for quite a few years. I have never injured my foot, although it feels like I have. At certain parts of the day it hurts to put any pressure on it and feels very weak so I end up walking with a limp at certain times in the day. 

 

Also  driving, which is probably the main reason why I am wanting to get to the bottom of my symptoms. For years my left foot will go numb after around 15 minutes of driving, I have to move it around to get the feeling back. My right foot for the last few months will start to shake and tremble which is pretty scary.

 

My joints hurt daily, my arms hurt when I put washing from the floor into the washing machine (I sit on the floor to do this) and also brushing/drying my hair hurts and will have to stop to give my arms a rest before I can continue.

 

I have experienced tingling/numbness in my hands and feet for years for no apparent reason, although this is not everyday. My eyes also went blurry overnight, the optician said this could be stress and gave me reading glasses.

 

I also sometimes have extreme fatigue. I can sleep for 14-18 hours a day when this happens. Sometimes I think that heat can make it worse. I had a scary moment recently where I had a hot bath and it made the fatigue so much worse, so much so that I didn't have the energy to get out! It took me over an hour and a half to get the energy to get out, it felt like an invisible boulder was on me, pressing me down.

 

I also feel like my brain isn't working properly, I can't take in as much information and haven't got a lot of mental energy. Filling in a form for example has become increasingly difficult, its as if someone has told me to solve a very hard maths question.

 

I think I have listed everything that has been worrying me, I will probably think of another one once I have finished. I guess my question is do I need to pursue this further with the dr and ask for a referral or do you think my symptoms are nothing to worry about and quite normal for a person to be feeling? As I said I have been to my gp before and I am always told the same things - that it is because of my age (I am 31), that it is normal wear and tear, that I need to exercise more, that maybe I'm depressed (I'm not) etc etc. I am so tired of the same advice from the dr that it has put me off going, but at the same time I am scared that these symptoms may mean something also. Has anyone else had the same symptoms as me? Did you ask the dr to refer you or did they suggest it?

 

I'm sorry for the really long post and I thank everyone who has read it and also anyone who may be able to give me some advice. 

 

Take care, Sophie

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Shirl

Hello Sophie and :welcome: to this board. I hope you soon find the information and support you need. It will help to look around the Resources tab where extensive information has been compiled with links to other websites, particularly the MS Trust charity.

 

Here's my advice: you do need a GP to listen and understand your concerns. You have written a good account and many of your experiences/symptoms could be neurological but Neurology is not a science that can pinpoint MS at a pen stroke. Testing, history-taking and eliminating other diseases takes time. Improvements to the diagnosis process are being made all the time. The first step is being listened to ...

 

9 hours ago, Sunnyme said:

I don't really know where to start, all I know is that I feel like I am going mad.

I doubt that very much! I went through a lengthy period of Limboland myself - knowing something was not at all right, but mistaken by my GP for years. Then I just became ill. It is hard to have an invisible illness. When I was diagnosed, I wanted to hug the Neurologist. After years with no progress, I moved city and my new neuro was much more understanding and determined to help me.

 

9 hours ago, Sunnyme said:

I think I have listed everything that has been worrying me, I will probably think of another one once I have finished. I guess my question is do I need to pursue this further with the dr and ask for a referral or do you think my symptoms are nothing to worry about and quite normal for a person to be feeling?

It would be a good idea to make a "shopping list" about your symptoms with approximate dates of onset, and frequency of events. Don't use a MS website list to help you - write it in your own words just like you've done here.

Once you have listed your history, you can begin a Symptom Diary from now on. When you see your GP, request a 20 minute appointment (or double). Take your notes with you.

I would also take a trusted family member or friend. Their job is to ensure any advice is written down (by them) which frees you from worrying about it. Also give them a copy of your lists so they can make sure you miss nothing - a copy for your GP too if they will take it.

 

9 hours ago, Sunnyme said:

As I said I have been to my gp before and I am always told the same things - that it is because of my age (I am 31), that it is normal wear and tear, that I need to exercise more, that maybe I'm depressed (I'm not) etc etc.

While all the above might be true, and not knowing you personally means I must be open-minded, I cannot agree this all sounds like your age. 31 is relatively young. Do you have to see the same GP every time? Maybe a different one next time? Say you need a second opinion, time to talk and that you are at your wits end. That is not the same as depression, although this symptom could also come about through worry and through any neurological illness you may have.

 

9 hours ago, Sunnyme said:

I'm sorry for the really long post and I thank everyone who has read it and also anyone who may be able to give me some advice. 

It is why we are here and we all once needed to talk. Keep asking, keep in touch and don't despair. And take some time to feel better about yourself too. :flowers2:

Make your list, start the symptom diary and make that appointment. Try to become your own best friend - the one that knows you best and knows you need and deserve help. Be organised, business like and true to yourself, Sophie.

 



Shirley

 

"one day at a time" - it's all anyone can do

 

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Stumbler

Hi Sophie and welcome.

 

There's not much that I can add to the comprehensive advice provided above. Just ensure you take care of yourself. Eat healthily, live carefully and manage stress effectively. Well, if you can, banish stress from your life. Stress is a major antagonist of neurological problems.

 

In fact, now's the time to pamper yourself a bit (avoiding hot baths). You're battling forward, so you deserve some reward.

 

Take care.

 

:moonieman:


John aka Stumbler (as I do fall over!)

Illegitimi non carborundum

 

"Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well-preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming... "Wow! What a ride!"

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