Old 07-25-2017, 03:55 PM #1 (permalink)
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Default 26 years old, troubles with swallowing - is it a bulbar onset?

Hello everyone!
Three months ago during my mealtime I realized I just couldn't swallow the piece of food I was chewing. I took great pains to try not to concentrate on that process, but in three days the same thing happened with water - as if my throat just forgot how to take a normal sip. When I tried to drink I merely choked on that liquid.
I visited the neurologist who examined me and said that I didn't have any clinical symptoms of ALS but, in order to exclude other diseases such as multiple sclerosis, myasthenia or myopathy, told me to do MRI, EMG and CPK blood test. None of those showed any pathology (p.s. the following muscles were tested on EMG: Orbicularis oculi dex. et sin., Digastricus (v.ant.) dex., Trapezius dex., Deltoideus dex., Abductor digiti minimi; actually it was a decrement test for myasthenia, not a needle EMG, and a sternocleidomastoid muscle was not tested, now I'm puzzled whether I should repeat my EMG?)
The worst thing is that three months have passed and I still cannot eat normally. I drink from a teaspoon and it takes me more than an hour to complete my dinner. Taking meals has turned into a pure hell, and I'm totally desperate about that. I've recently visited another neurologist to hear his opinion and he examined me and said I would rather see a psychotherapist. A few days ago I noticed that my wrists have gone abnormally thin and it also seems to me that my neck has become flabby and it has become difficult to speak out. Another thing is that I am no more able to sneeze when it's itching in my nose.
Would be glad to hear any advice about the situation. Thanks in advance.

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Old 07-25-2017, 09:38 PM #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: 26 years old, troubles with swallowing - is it a bulbar onset?

That's so very weird. It's horrible.

If a neurologist has visited with you, heard your symptoms, examined you, and is NOT looking into ALS, then I would not second-guess him.
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Old 07-25-2017, 09:52 PM #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: 26 years old, troubles with swallowing - is it a bulbar onset?

I'm with Mike. I am sorry for your odd issue. Wow that's a bad one, but if your Dr is not looking at ALS no reason for you to do so. Bulbar ALS really does not typically present with all that drama anyway.
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Old 07-26-2017, 06:05 AM #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: 26 years old, troubles with swallowing - is it a bulbar onset?

Thank you both for the reply, I really appreciate your sympathy. At least I'll try to dig into the psychological roots of the problem, for no doctor sees any physiological issues. I also noticed that I eat better at public spaces, so maybe it's really too much concentration on the process of swallowing and fear of choking on food.
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Old 07-26-2017, 06:43 AM #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: 26 years old, troubles with swallowing - is it a bulbar onset?

How horrible for you, I am glad your doctor didn't think it was ALS. If you feel anxiety and hypervigilence is making it worse try watching tv while you are eating to distract you.

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Old 07-26-2017, 08:21 AM #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: 26 years old, troubles with swallowing - is it a bulbar onset?

That's a good idea, thank you so much.
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