Join Date: Jul 2010
Re: headache meds.
I spotted one of your much earlier postings about scoliosis, but that thread had ended, so I am responding to you here instead.
Every single one of your symptoms that I have seen, including migraines, scoliosis, dizziness, pins and needles, racing heart, back pain, shooting pains, sleep apnea (jerking awake), inner ear stuff, visual disturbances, and panic attack feelings are all connected and can all be caused by what is known as an Arnold-Chiari Malformation and a related syndrome called Tethered Cord Syndrome. I speak as someone with most of the same symptoms who has been researching this whole thing for myself!
What Chiari is (not to be confused with the similarly named Budd-Chiari syndrome, which is some kind of liver disorder) is a hernia of the lowest part of the cerebellum, called the cerebellar tonsils. Basically, these cerebellar tonsils protrude through the hole in the space of the spine, get compressed, and also exert pressure on the spinal column and brain stem.
Also, the flow of the cerebro-spinal fluid is affected, too. The C.S.F. can build in pressure, and can even press hard on the pituitary gland and cause an even wider range of diverse problems!!!!
The Tethered Cord Syndrome is very related. Basically, the Spinal Cord, on everyone, is attached to the spinal bones at the base of the spine by a piece of connective tissue. In most people, it is loose, flexible, and can move around normally. In people like us, that connective tissue pulls very very tightly, which not only 1) drags the spinal cord down and can actually be the force that is pulling the lowest brain parts out of the the skull at the base of the spine, and also 2) introduces a lot of tension into the spine itself, which can influence the spine to move into incorrect positions.... What I would suspect is that you probably had a milder scoliosis growing up, and at some point, the tension in the spinal cord from the T.C.S. suddenly made it more extreme, more visible, and caused your scapula to protrude.
Even your daughter's velopharyngeal insufficiency may be from a similar source, as this can also be caused by either Chiari or Basilar Invagination, which is very similar.---There seems to be some evidence that all of these things may be genetic, and may also be exacerbated by a difficult birth.
Many people have asymptomatic Chiari, as in the cerebellar tonsils stick out but the person is fine. However, an asymptomatic person can develop a wide range of awful and changing symptoms with events such as giving birth, a car accident, or even sneezing or coughing! Basically, anything that causes pressure in the head or trauma to the head. (Mine got much worse after the birth of my second daughter six years ago, and I was told that it was post-partum depression. However, it never really went away!) Day to day, symptoms may come and go, which unfortunately can cause doctors to be very dismissive, when in truth all of the symptoms are far too real!!!!!! Over the course of time, it is not unusual for symptoms to grow progressively worse.
I found these videos to be very helpful:
Here is an overview of Chiari Malformation:
Hope that this is helpful and clears up the mysteries! Sending blessings to you and to your daughter, and wishing you health and wellness.