Friday, 27 June 2014

MS fast fact - Vertigo

It's been a very MS-y week.

With incredible vertigo now being added to my list of symptoms.


Dizziness is a common symptom of MS.  Personally, I feel off balance and lightheaded pretty much every day.  Less often, people with MS can have the sensation that they or their surroundings are spinning  - a condition known as vertigo. These symptoms are due to lesions in the areas of the brain that coordinate and maintain equilibrium.


I hardy made it out of bed this morning, and ended up crumpled in a heap on the bathroom floor.  I've been in bed ever since, trying not to move my head at all.

Even with a 2 hour nap, it still feels like I am permanently spinning.  Barf...

My giant baking bowl has been holding guard just in case I need to use it.

I am not sure if anything can be done - I've heard some people with MS can take a short course of steroids or anti-motion sickness medication.  I put in a call to the nurse anyway.

I guess this means I have no choice but to sleep away the weekend... right boys?

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

When style takes a backseat...

I've written about the effects of heat on MS before.  My post from last summer explains all the sweaty details here.

Tis the season again.  It's not actually that hot outside, but townhouse living makes the heat stand still.  It sinks right in.  I have that unwanted sticky-glisten all day long.

The usual tricks aren't working.  The blinds are closed during the hottest times, the windows are cracked and the rooftop deck door is open and screened to create a breeze.  The clunky old portable AC is about to make an appearance too.

This year, I have thrown caution (and all fashion sense) to the wind. 

I bought a cooling neck tie.

Yes, you read that correctly.  It looks sort of like a boy scout neck tie, but with cooling gel beads inside.  There actually is a market for these things, as you can see:

This one is from REI in the US (which is like our MEC) but there are lots of specialty online retailers for these babies, as well as all sorts of even-more-fashionable cooling gear.

I've yet to decide if this will be an at-home accessory, or if I'll venture out in it...

But, ahhh - bliss!

Tuesday, 24 June 2014

MS fast fact - Lhermitte's sign

This is the name given to an electric shock-like sensation that occurs when flexing or moving the neck. This sensation radiates down the spine, sometimes into the trunk, legs, and arms.

At some point, about one third of individuals with MS will experience Lhermitte’s sign.  Lhermitte’s sign was named after Jacques Jean Lhermitte, the French neurologist who first characterized it.

It is a classic symptom of cervical spinal cord lesions.


I felt this for the first time about a month ago, when I flexed my neck downwards.  Then again this past weekend during a marathon fight with the Rainbow Loom.  (Age 7 and up?  Pfftt!  I swear it's the most complicated blasted piece of plastic I've ever encountered).

It does feel like an electric shock, but it also feels like intense heat.  The heat spread right down my back, like I was on fire.  I was grabbing at my shirt, asking everyone to check because something must be on me

Nope.  Just that darn cervical spinal cord.

(And... the Rainbow Looming is coming along a little better now)

Monday, 16 June 2014

A spewing of thoughts

Seems as though I had a bit of a blog-sabbatical.

Maybe it's because my brain needed a break from thinking about MS and huge medication decisions.  I think I spent a good week purely researching my two main drug contenders. 

I still haven't heard back from my extended health plan about whether they'd cover the cost of Lemtrada treatment.  Three weeks in, and I have a sneaking suspicion the answer is no.

Or maybe it's because there's been a lot of me-against-the-boys happening.  They are at that still-cute, but getting more aggressive with each other age.  They become these tantruming, antagonistic creatures who can turn anything into a kid-style-debate.  Even deciding on some blasted vitamins.

And questions.  So many questions.  While I teeter above a public toilet seat, Oliver sneaks a peek, announces, yet ponders, "Why Mommies don't have penises?"  

Oh, I am tired!...

It also doesn't help that I am 3 days into loss of sensation in the fingers of my left hand. 

These blips don't really faze me much anymore.  It's bothersome, uncomfortable, and does interfere with life to a degree, but it's so easy to just shrug my shoulders and accept it.  And, by "accept it," I mean live in a constant state of waiting to see what's going to go wrong next. 

Not healthy, I know.  But that seems to be how things have been going with this MS malarkey.

But, we still need to laugh.  And who'd have thought I'd have so much in common with Lois...