Sorry for the delay, I didn't want to post an update only days or a week after the procedure.
It's been just over 3 weeks since the ballooning procedure and to be honest I feel pretty good, probably the best I've felt in 3 years.
Here's a run down of what my symptoms were, and if they have improved:
- Slight numbness & tingling from my waist down. Four hours later: intense burning pain, unable to walk or stand, loss of bladder/bowel function. Treated with IVIG for one week, in rehab for 1.5 months, able to walk unassisted after about 4 weeks.
There's still some numbness in my shins and feet. Most days some numbness comes and goes throughout that area. Since the procedure this isn't as regular an occurrance and not as severe when it does happen. It may be permanent nerve damage, or it may repair itself gradually over time
- Cog fog daily, rarely can I concentrate
I'm not back to 100%, but I'm actually switched on for most of the day, as opposed to switched off for most of the day. This has been around for a few years, so it might take a while to come back (if at all).
- Constant fatigue
The first few days I didn't notice anything significant, maybe a bit less fatigue, but hard to judge (had to take it really easy for a few days after the procedure). Then on the fourth day, my fatigue seemingly just vanished. I woke up early, took the dog for a jog, came home and cut the front and back lawns and did some weeding and edged the grass (used that wheel tool to cut/seperate the grass and the concrete). Then I took the dog for another jog later that night.
The gardening stuff was probably about 5-6 hours, with a short break in between for lunch. Not once during the day did I feel tired or fatigued. For the past 6 months, any type of physical activity I did eg. taking the dog for a short walk, would knock me on my ass for hours afterwards. I would need to have a nap afterwards, or if I didn't, I'd be walking around like a zombie. When I finally went to bed I was exhausted, but exhausted from a hard days work. I haven't had to take a nap during the day since the procedure.
- Dizziness/head spins while sitting, or from sitting to standing
- Numbness/tingling/pain to varying degrees in arms/legs/chest/face
I still get weird sensations occasionally, alot less though, and less severe.
- Difficulty swallowing at times, irregardless of whether I'm eating or drinking
Hasn't happened once since.
- Constant headaches (even upon waking)
No headaches since. This has been big for me, for the past 6 months I have had at least 2 headaches a week (sometimes more).
- Further hand/eye co-ordination problems
Not back to 100%, but improved somewhat
- Extreme sensitivity to heat
It's winter here, so I'll have to wait until Spring/Summer to really judge this, but having a hot shower doesn't drain me of my energy anymore.
- Hands and feet always ice cold
Gone completely. Don't get me wrong, my hands get cold if I go outside, or my feet if I walk without shoes on the tiles, but they aren't even ice cold when this happens. Returning to a warmer area clears it up completely, whereas before even after a hot shower they would only warm up a little bit.
- Blurry/altered vision at random times & durations
Still happens occasionally, though not as severe, and not for as long.
- Lhermitte’s sign (No lesions though, WTF?)
- Balance fluctuates hourly/daily
Improved for the most part, fairly steady on my feet. It's probably the numbness in my feet that's holding me back from being a gold medal gymnast or ballet dancer
- Shortness of breath at times
Still happens occasionally, but not as regularly, not for as long, and not as severe.
- Unstable moods, almost bi-polar like
My moods are much improved, I actually feel like the old me again. Witty, confident, humorous, and more talkative.
Now, could all of this be placebo effect? I doubt it very much, I went in to the procedure expecting nothing at all, no improvements, nothing. For the past 6 months I have been declining almost weekly, my symptoms have just never let up in this time frame.
I'll give another update in a couple of weeks or so. Take care everyone.