Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Repeat relapse

I spent today at the MS clinic for an emergency relapse appointment.  The tingling and numbness has been festering for weeks now, and it's only getting worse.  Spreading upwards along my limbs.  Left lower leg and left hand.  A few days ago I noticed my balance and coordination were off.  I tried to walk down the bleachers during Jack's swimming lessons, and it just woudn't happen on it's own.  My foggy brain just could not send the signal for my foot to move.  I was so worried I was going to fall, I did all the stairs with my right foot leading the way, half-scooching on my bottom.  Just like a toddler. 

All of these things I have anticipated - they are common MS symptoms.  I've had them before.  No biggie, right?

Then, I started losing my hearing.  

And it's not getting any better.

My neurologist did a full exam - and could see the physical limitations of my left limbs, plus confirmed the hearing loss is a defnite (although so, so rare) complication of my MS.  Leave the rarities to me.  The scarring from my vision loss last summer is still visible, and my right eye still cannot process the colour red properly.

The tingling and numbness are, mostly likely, due to the transverse lesion on my spinal cord, whereas the hearing is probably due to a new lesion on my brainstem.

We also discussed the possibility of  "Rebif failure."  Which means my medication may in fact not be working.  At this point in injection therapy treatment, people are typically not seeing new relapses and new lesions.  And because I am still having bad side-effects, months in, we may switch to another medication.  It too would be an injectable, however, would be daily.  Once I try that, if it does not work, I can switch to a monthly-IV treatment that may work better for my body.

So, tomorrow morning I start a 3-day course of IV steroids at the hospital.  It should alleviate the relapse symptoms quicker than if untreated, but of course has it's own side effects - namely intense mania and hyper-activity - fun times for all!  I of course, filled my prescription for sleeping pills the second I could.  Cause, you know, sleep doesn't come easily already - in my usual non-manic state. 

It'll be en early start tomorrow.  But I have never been so excited to have steroids pumped into my body!

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