Old 07-04-2013, 05:30 PM #1 (permalink)
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Default Hoping this is something else

I'm hoping I can get some insight to some recent events. I'm 58. About 2 years ago, fatigue sort of...not bad. Clumsy, dropping stuff, stumbling, not staying balanced but not bad. I continued to be active, in shape, some weightlifting, jogging. Weight good, eat balanced meal, take supplements. Moderation, some wine, occasional cocktail.

Last year I had a major problem with TMJ...still a problem, in pain a lot, soft diet now. The doctors give me a mouth guard but doesn't help. They say there's nothing else they can do. With this comes awful tinnitus.

So I'm still going along, jogging, some weights, lots of walking. A few weeks ago I notice I'm exhausted just walking to kitchen. Maybe exhausted isn't the right work. I'm having trouble breathing. I'm very fatigued, almost panting. This is happening a lot now and I try to jog and it's awful. No weights. Walking not too bad and it's the only exercise I'm getting so I have to do something because I can't stand not exercising. Mowing the yard is exhausting and last week, standing and cooking I thought I'd not make it. Every moment of the day I am aware of my breathing. It's labored and I'm struggling to breath. It's not like I'm hyperventilating, it's the opposite, like I can't get the muscles around my chest to expand fully without a lot of effort. This has been really difficult because I'm a singer. Sitting and singing is painful but standing is better because I'm using the diaphragm and the chest is less engaged.

I used to have a benign tremor and strangely, it's gone.

For several days now everything hurts. Not tingling but just a generalized ache, everywhere. I don't have a cold or flu either. My arms are tired too, so are my legs. Even typing this is tiring. I have to stop frequently and rest my hands and arms.

I'm not as strong lately as I've usually been. Ok, so I've been a bit clumsy all my life, but it's worse now. I have to really pay attention to everything around me or it gets knocked on the floor. I also stumble, lose my coordination and bump my shoulder or arm into the wall. My grip isn't as good as it used to be either.

I don't want to have ALS so I'm hoping I'm being a hypochondriac. But this breathing stuff is really scaring me. I just had my physical at the VA and blood-work was pretty normal, at least not a sign of ischemic heart disease or blood gas problems. It's not Parkinson's either...I don't have a tremor or shaking, at least for now. But like I said, these weird things going on with my body are spooking me.

My doctor has ordered an EKG and I've asked for a pulmonary treadmill stress test. I'm thinking I should look outside the VA for a neurologist.

I've read several posts here (thanks for the information) and I've done some other researching. So I'm posting because I'm not sure what to do next. Thoughts?
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Old 07-04-2013, 11:51 PM #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hoping this is something else

Hello,

You say that you are "still going along, jogging, some weights, lots of walking".

No one with ALS can do this that you claim you do.

Have you been checked for vitamins or mineral deficiency? I do know that the lack of some nutrients may cause symptoms that resemble those you are describing.
Also, get yourself checked for Diabetes.

If your GP deems it necessary he/she might give you a referral to see a Neurologist, in case your symptoms are related to that.

But, honestly, even when I am not a Doctor, just a patient living with ALS, nothing that you describe on your post sounds like it.
In fact, anxiety, nervousness, stress and being hypochondriac can multiply by 1000 any benign symptoms you might be experiencing.


Good luck.


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Old 07-04-2013, 11:58 PM #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hoping this is something else

I echo Carlos. Word for word.

+

Your GP, I think, is on the case for you. The pulmo stress test will be telling.
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Old 07-05-2013, 12:05 AM #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hoping this is something else

Do you have actual weakness? I can't say what you have, but without weakness I would worry less about it being ALS.
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Old 07-05-2013, 09:58 AM #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hoping this is something else

Thanks for the replies and I need to clarify. I'm not lifting any weights now. I try going for a walk but have a lot of trouble now. I have a lot of weakness and trouble breathing. Thanks for writing back, it's very helpful. My breathing issues are scaring me, as is the fatigue. I agree the cardio stress test is the best test to rule out anything else. My glucose levels have been running high as well and I just had another test on Tuesday, still waiting for results. I'm in the Impaired Fasting Glucose diagnosis for Diabetes Type 2 now, which is considered pre-full blown Type 2. Again, I appreciate all the help.
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Old 07-05-2013, 03:21 PM #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hoping this is something else

Since shortness of breath is prominent, would see a pulmo and get PFTs done.
For tinnitus/TMJ, would see an ENT or dentist that specializes, still a lot that can be done w/ focused rehab.
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