Do you have trouble sleeping on your back?Wake up "paralyzed

A forum to discuss Chronic Cerebrospinal Venous Insufficiency and its relationship to Multiple Sclerosis.

Do you have trouble sleeping on your back?Wake up "paralyzed

Postby DrDiana » Mon Dec 12, 2011 5:28 pm

Does anyone here feel very symptomatic, or have new symptoms, when they sleep on their backs? Have you ever woken up feeling "paralyzed" with the inability to move or even speak? Thanks for your help!
Dr. Diana

Special interest in "brain drains" and how they affect numerous conditions, including MS, Ehlers-Danlos, Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, etc. I am a therapeutic optometrist on professional disability with EDS, POTS, CCSVI, mast cell disea
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Re: Do you have trouble sleeping on your back?Wake up "paral

Postby euphoniaa » Mon Dec 12, 2011 6:05 pm

DrDiana wrote:Does anyone here feel very symptomatic, or have new symptoms, when they sleep on their backs? Have you ever woken up feeling "paralyzed" with the inability to move or even speak? Thanks for your help!


Yep, it's a cervical thing with me. :smile:

Hi Dr. Diana,

Here's what I posted about the paralysis thing on p. 111 of upright doc's CCSVI and CCVBP thread. I also posted the entire report from my C-spine MRI in 2003 that identified the spinal damage. chronic-cerebrospinal-venous-insufficiency-ccsvi-f40/topic14005-1650.html

And this is what I said about it:
I had to stop sleeping on my back in early adulthood because both my arms would go paralyzed to my sides (not numb) and immoveable, so to get up in the morning I'd have to kinda throw my body to one side until I got it into a position where it loosened up. Then it would be gone once I finally got it into a different position (which tells me it's not an MS brain lesion...). I still had it at least at the time of my MS dx, but I have to sleep propped up due to reflux nowadays (yet another non-MS issue), so I don't roll onto my back by accident any more to test it. And of course, I never went to a doctor for it.

In fact, I told my family about it in case I'm ever lying on my back unconscious in a hospital bed for an extended period of time. And I've always notified my dentists/beauticians that they may have to help me out of the chair if they keep my head back too long. Seriously.


My other posts on that thread pretty much explain my lifelong cervical issues in case you're interested.

Here's one more quote from me:
All my adult life I've assumed that my body's lifelong weirdnesses were due to my many other medical issues. In fact, the main reason I didn't get diagnosed with MS for 30+ years is because I've always assumed that most of my problems were due to a couple of childhood whiplash incidents. And I had always read that whiplash injuries are likely to cause any number of problems later in life. I treated them on that assumption, and my approach usually worked.


Personally, although I chart dozens of symptoms daily, I can't pin a single one of them to MS due to my other medical problems. :smile:
Dx'd with MS & HNPP (hereditary peripheral neuropathy) 7/03 but must have had MS for 30 yrs before that. I've never taken meds for MS except 1 yr experiment on LDN. (I found diet, exercise, sleep, humor, music help me the most.)
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Re: Do you have trouble sleeping on your back?Wake up "paral

Postby DrDiana » Mon Dec 12, 2011 6:31 pm

euphoniaa wrote:
DrDiana wrote:Does anyone here feel very symptomatic, or have new symptoms, when they sleep on their backs? Have you ever woken up feeling "paralyzed" with the inability to move or even speak? Thanks for your help!


Yep, it's a cervical thing with me. :smile:


Can you tell me if you can speak during these episodes? Thanks so much!
Dr. Diana

Special interest in "brain drains" and how they affect numerous conditions, including MS, Ehlers-Danlos, Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, etc. I am a therapeutic optometrist on professional disability with EDS, POTS, CCSVI, mast cell disea
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Re: Do you have trouble sleeping on your back?Wake up "paral

Postby euphoniaa » Tue Dec 13, 2011 4:14 am

DrDiana wrote:
Can you tell me if you can speak during these episodes? Thanks so much!


Sorry, but I really can't remember, since I stopped intentionally sleeping on my back over 30 years ago. I would think that if I had noticed something else that frightening,- like loss of speech - I'd still remember it, but in most of those situations there wasn't any reason to talk, except to myself. Either my husband (at the time) was asleep or had already left for work early.

I can, however, lie on my back for short periods when I exercise without noticing much difference, but much of that time I'm also moving my head (like for crunches) or I have a rolled up towel behind my c-spine, as recommended by a chiro years ago.
Dx'd with MS & HNPP (hereditary peripheral neuropathy) 7/03 but must have had MS for 30 yrs before that. I've never taken meds for MS except 1 yr experiment on LDN. (I found diet, exercise, sleep, humor, music help me the most.)
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Re: Do you have trouble sleeping on your back?Wake up "paral

Postby CindyCB » Tue Dec 13, 2011 1:55 pm

Interestingly I get this worst when my thyroid levels are too low, as does my mum (also hypothyroid).

Do you mean a sort of state of semi-conscienciousness where you feel like you are awake and but your body won't move or respond?

I have read that this occurs because the chemicals used to keep you from thrashing about in your sleep or sleep walking (sorry, can't remember what it's called) is working as it should but the mind is waking up so you feel aware of your surroundings but are unable to fully wake and move around.

I also sometimes see things in this state - I want to talk or even scream but nothing happens, no matter how hard I try.

My top tip is to move something small like your toe or little finger very slowly and concentrate on that until you can bring yourself out of it - the harder you try to combat it the less likely it'll work.

When my thyroid levels are better this happens less often though.
Thyroid disease, Vitamin D deficiency, hypermobility, 'ME/CFS', CCSVI (stenosis both sides and assymetric malformed valves), TMJ - No MS but many neuro symptoms.
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