Pins and Needles

I’ve been waiting forever for a visit with the neurologist, and I finally got to go on Thursday.  After having what we were told in the ER were probably Hemiplegic Migraines, we needed to follow up and make sure it wasn’t anything serious.  The thing about hemiplegic migraines is that, they are really scary and appear exactly as a stroke would, but they aren’t dangerous and they don’t leave lasting damage.

The neurologist was really nice, and the visit lasted for an hour and a half.  We talked about what exactly happens when I get an “attack”.  She examined me.  We talked about my medical history and all that jazz.

I learned some new things.  For one: strokes don’t always show up on a CT scan.  They only show up on a CT scan if they are major bleeds.  A small or medium stroke might not show up at all.  Worse, the only really reliable way to know if I had a bleed at all is to have an MRI, and some strokes still will not be visible on an MRI until two days have elapsed.  None of the ERs I’ve visited in the last few years have done an MRI, and I haven’t had an MRI at all since I’ve had these attacks.  So there’s one possibility.

She also said that this sounds like it could be a rare type of seizure.  I was epileptic with (grand mal) seizures from birth until age five or six, when they weaned me off the anti-seizure medicine.  I never had another seizure until I was sixteen as a side effect of a medicine I was taking.  I never took that stuff again, and I never had another seizure (that I know of) up until now.  So, I might be having seizures.

I might also have an auto-immune disorder.  (Good lord, I don’t think I need to be dealing with any more disorders, thank you very much!)  They’re doing preliminary auto-immune bloodwork and if anything looks fishy, we can do more in-depth bloodwork.  At least that test is easy.

So, I’m signed up for an EEG which is really no big deal, and I’ve had a lot of them when I was a kid since because epilepsy.  It’s not invasive and blah, blah, blah.  I’m not too worried about the test itself.

Waiting for insurance to approve an MRI, and then we’ll be doing that to be sure I had no bleeding in my brain at all.  (Fingers crossed.)

Then, she’s planning on doing a 24-hour EEG that I would wear at home.  I have a follow-up appointment at the end of February (I think) to find out what exactly is going on with me, and what next steps should be/are.

So, right now I’m really hoping this winds up being hemiplegic migraines after all, because the doctor says it could be but it’s not the most likely suspect.  >.>  I don’t really wanna be dealing with seizures or strokes though.  No matter how small.