And it's pretty much the same... but I hope this information could help many people who, like me, are searching for answers everywhere.
As Nikki clearly stated, answering my brief Q/A, there's no substitute for a professional opinion(a doc's visit), and better so if you got the chance to have some studies done to you.
So here is what I've learned:
1. First DX:Toxin Induced Neuropathy, produced by Ethylene Oxide exposure.
Actual DX: Sequels from a Polyneuropathy of unknown cause.
DX evolved after I took an EMG test(more on this later).
Symptoms: Began with a tingling right forearm, with mild motor dysfunction(I felt it a little clumsy and weak). It continued to weird numbness, tingling, burning sensations, pins and needles, water in my toes, you name it.
Later on it moved to my left arm and leg, mostly from elbow to hand and from knee to foot in both sides of my body. THis is when I got my first neuro visit.
Then I felt pain, like pins and needles, and burning, and mild to heavy electric shock pain, along with skin and muscle hypersensitivity.
Motor function remained fluctuating between almost asymptotic, to some clumsiness and weakness, but never too serious
The neurologist gave me Lyrica, right at the first visit, because he could not saw any evident motor dysfunction on his examination, that could indicate anything else(ALS, MS, Guillaume Barre Syndrome, just to mention three common worries).
Since I'm a specialist in thinking about the worst case scenario, I came with an Internist friend of mine which added a serious case of Stress/Anxiety that made things worse.
2. Why the test? Even before I felt the symptoms I was under heavy stress, with little or none good sleeping hours. This worsened when the neuropathy struck, so I was completely overwhelmed by it all.
On top of this somedays I felt my hands clumsier, my legs weaker(like jelly legs), and felt fasciculations in many parts of my body. Next thing you knew I was filled with needles and electrodes on the EMG test table.(AND I HATE NEEDLES).
3. The results: The Dx was supported both by my original neurologist and a neurophysiologyst, which was the one that performed the EMG test.
Briefly the found nerve denervation both in hands and legs, but from some "previous" incident, there was not any current progressive denervation, and they call my symptoms "sequels".
I do remember that the neurophysiologist asked me "How long are you dealing with this?" Like if this all symptoms were residual. I told him: Two weeks top, I felt great before this.
THey found a reduced interference/recruitment pattern in my study.
A note from the net that could add more info on this:
In ALS there is motor units loss, therefore, those patients have a reduced interference pattern or reduced recruitment. Whatever they do, they do not reach the full recruitment pattern. This is very much noticeable if there is significant motor units loss. As a matter of fact this is also true for other neuropathic conditions, for instance, peripheral neuropathy. So, reduced recruitment is not specific for ALS.
5. Treatment: Again for the symptoms: Lyrica, this should resolve in some weeks.
- You NEED to go to one or two specialist for the best possible answers to your health problems.
- You NEED to get some studies, not ALL, specially the ones that are prescribed for you by your physician.
Why? YOu can do MRI, Blood, EMG, CAT, you name it, but if it's not something close to your problem, chances are that you spend lots of money for nothing, or even worse, that you find something else, not related to your symptoms, to worry about.
- Still a lot of things will remain n the blue, like in every other aspect in life. I don't know what caused this, I'd love to know it so I can actively avoid it. In the meantime, I stay away from solvents, but who knows?
- If someone knows a new way to prevent this horrible stuff, let us know.
- The EMG was a torture to me, both because of my fear of needles, and because of how expensive it was for me, I'm kind of broke. But the little peace of mind that it gave me, was worth every penny.
- I'm not completely out of my ugly thinking, and that's something I have to treat with another specialist, but at least I believe that I took a little step in the right way, to overcome this ugly condition, both physically and mentally.
Hope this helps someone.