MRIs and Spinal Taps

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MRIs and Spinal Taps

Postby Wandering » Fri Feb 24, 2012 10:03 am

hi guys. Im new here and am just wondering whats going on with me, so I joined to browse the topics and ask some of my own questions.

One question I have right now is, will a spinal tap and an mri reveal the same things in regards to MS? I ask because Ive been going through a lot lately and Ive already had an mri that was negative (for stroke, tumors etc), however that was before people started mentioning the possibility of ms. At this pt Im going to see my pcp early next week and will push for a neurologist referral, which shouldnt be a problem as we already discussed that a few mos back. So when I go should I push the neuro to do a spinal tap or what?

This is so frustrating. Something is messing with me but all my tests have been negative. Ive had extensive bloodwork, brain MRI both types, EKG, EEG, heart tests, carotid artery doppler, CT scan of the head basically everything a pcp can get done without referring me to a neurologist.

I have a lot of MS like symptoms and am concerned that if I do have it, its really wrecking me, something is regardless.

This past October I woke up one sunday morning and my left eye vision was completely out of whack, everything was a complete blur. I couldnt tell who people were if they stood right in front of my face, out of my left eye. I was misdiagnosed with macular degeneration, which was changed to CRVO about a month later. This is what led to most of the tests, but I also blacked out twice in early November, once while driving and I almost hit a tree. Both of the blackout episodes happened on the same day within hrs of each other, in fact when I was driving I was taking myself to the hospital.

Other symptoms are an almost constant state of lightheadedness, you know that feeling we all get if we rise too fast at times? I feel like that 90% of the time, sometimes worse to the point of dizziness where I have to sitdown or risk a fall.

Lots of tingling all over my body but mostly in the middle of my back where it meets the neck, and my fingers and toes, left side most of the time.

When I was a freshman in HS I went to the dr for an episode of like electric shocks to the back of my head when I moved sometimes (nothing determined). Weird feeling, it would subside after a few minutes of tingling and a really warm feeling. I hadnt had that happen again until recently and it's happened quite a bit. I am 42 now.

My strength is gone. I used to be a beacon of health. Today Im a shadow of my old shadow. I literally have no grip anymore. I drop stuff constantly. I used to be known for having a crushing grip, today it hurts my hands if I make a fist, feels so weak.

My legs give out when I walk, caused me to fall down a few stairs around christmas. They both do it differently. My left is really stiff from the knee down and my right will buckle during the day a lot. Really weak and fatigued feeling all the time in my limbs.

At this pt the only thing Ive been diagnosed with is CRVO, but they couldnt explain why it happened. Its generally caused by chronic high blood pressure (mine has always been normal), or result of a stroke/mini stroke. All tests for stroke have been negative.

I've had a ton of cognitive problems, everything from memory loss to slurred speach, memory issues persist, but the slurred speach came and went. Ive also had a bout of tremors in my head and my left arm which lasted not quite a week.

Anyway, what should I be asking from the Neuro? Everything I read about them leads me to believe that Im going to go explain myself and be summarily dismissed as a whacko lol.

It seems peoples experiences with neuros have not been the greatest. I've tried to just hope these symptoms would go away on their own, but they havent, at least not for any amount of time. I have to get this figured out because it is having a disabling effect on me currently and my boss will only hold my job for a couple more mos.

Thanks for any advice, and for your time all.

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Re: MRIs and Spinal Taps

Postby DougL » Fri Feb 24, 2012 12:15 pm

Wandering wrote:At this pt the only thing Ive been diagnosed with is CRVO, but they couldnt explain why it happened. Its generally caused by chronic high blood pressure (mine has always been normal), or result of a stroke/mini stroke. All tests for stroke have been negative.

Central retinal vein occlusion (CRVO) is a common retinal vascular disorder

if you do not know about it, please research CCSVI. it is also vascular.

good luck.
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Re: MRIs and Spinal Taps

Postby jimmylegs » Fri Feb 24, 2012 1:01 pm

hey there sorry to hear about your troubles.

afaik when they do the spinal tap they're looking for a couple things - 1) for oligoclonal banding or 'o-bands' in the CSF and compare it to the findings in serum. 2) they also look for things like elevated IgG etc. these are markers of chronic inflammation i believe, whereas when they do MRIs they're looking for hyperintensities indicative of lesions. are you going to have the lumbar puncture done? or did you already?

since nutrition is my thing, just looked up your dx with nutrition in mind and ran across this study:

Central Retinal Vein Occlusion After Intense Exercise in Healthy Patients ... nse.4.aspx
"Purpose: To report a case-series of central retinal vein occlusion that occurred in young, healthy patients after periods of intense exercise.

Design: Retrospective chart review.

Methods: Seven eyes of six patients with central retinal vein occlusion after exercise were assessed. Visual acuity, intraocular pressure, and physical examination evidence of neovascularization were recorded on presentation and follow-up visits. Some patients had optical coherence tomography done on both initial and final visits and some had only one optical coherence tomography performed. One eye had no light perception at the time of diagnosis and was excluded from statistical calculations involving visual acuity.

Results: Patients were all males without any significant medical history. All patients had complete blood work, including hypercoagulable workup. Results were normal and no underlying cause was ever identified. Mean age was 37.6 years. The mean duration of symptoms before examination was 12.4 weeks. The average time that patients were observed was 170 days. On presentation, the average logarithm of the minimum angle of resolution value and standard deviation of visual acuity were 0.113 ± 0.198. The decimal acuity at this time was 0.83 ± 1.98 lines with the Snellen equivalent of 20/28.33 ± 1.92 lines. The average logarithm of the minimum angle of resolution value and standard deviation of final visual acuity were 0.081 ± 0.179. The decimal acuity was 0.9 ± 1.79 lines and the Snellen equivalent was 20/25.6 ± 1.79 lines. Mean intraocular pressure was 16.9 with standard deviation of 6.025. Range of intraocular pressure was 7 to 30 mmHg. Central retinal thickness as measured by optical coherence tomography ranged from 200 to 700 μm. No complication developed as a result of central retinal vein occlusion during the follow-up period.

Conclusion: Central retinal vein occlusion may occur in young, healthy patients after intense exercise. The exact precipitating event is unknown, but may be a combination of factors, including transiently increased intravascular and intraocular pressure, dehydration, and increased blood viscosity."
"Mineral status also seems to have some effect on blood rheology because it has been found that athletes with low serum zinc and iron have a higher blood viscosity."

any chance that makes sense in your case? looks like low zinc is something that crvo and ms patients have in common. ms patients tend to be grouped in the low end of the normal range for serum zinc.

just an fyi, zinc and iron tend to be found in the same foods so if you're low in one you could also be low in the other. if you supplement just one or the other, one will increase a lot while the other gets driven down. if you supplement both carefully, levels of both come slowly up.

there are a bunch of other nutrients you could look at if you like - things that are typically off in ms patients, and more generally may be sub-optimal across modern developed society, with a variety of possible results depending upon the individual. hope that provides a little food for thought. if you're not interested there's tons of other material here, but if you want to know more i'm available to answer questions.
odd sx? no dx? check w/ dietitian
99% don't meet these. meds/lifestyle can affect levels
status can be low in ms & other cond'ns
'but my results are normal'. typical panels don't test all
deficits occur in 'normal' range
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Re: MRIs and Spinal Taps

Postby blossom » Fri Feb 24, 2012 8:44 pm

nutrition is always good. have you looked into anything regarding spinal issues--especially the cervical ? dr. flannagan has a thread under the ccsvi heading of tims -the topic is called "ccsvi and ccvbp" the author is "upright doc". there is some very interesting research being done by chiropractors and the upright mri.

we are all individuals with symptoms they named ms--but nothing is written in stone.
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