Anxiety or Actual Symptoms

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New member
May 29, 2024
Learn about ALS
I'd like to first confirm that I have read the stickies and respect the rules of this forum. I also want to thank those who take the time to read and answer - I know this is supposed to be a resource, not a way for people to fuel or dispel health anxiety.

I'm a 35 year old female who has had weird twitching and tingling occur over the last few days. The first was a random twitch in my third toe on my left foot. A friend who is a doctor attributed it to dehydration or a pinched nerve. Later, I noticed my quads were spasming/rolling. I know that the mind and internet are powerful and can trigger the symptoms but the continuation freaked me out. I have a family history of twitches/muscle cramps, which I know would calm most people down but in this case, it has me more concerned because I feel like this just came out of nowhere.

I've also noticed that there is sort of like 'flutter works' occurring all over my body. Random limbs, random times and that I'm getting tingling (not the same as a foot falling asleep but rather a fluttering feeling) in my left foot. I am also struggling with perceived weakness on my left (non dominant) side - I can balance on one leg for example, or do a calf raise but it feels "lighter". I know that anxiety can also make you highly aware of your body.

Google can be a terrifying place where all roads lead to this terrible disease, which is how I found your forum. I have a doctors appointment later this week, but I'm hoping that some feedback here can help quell my anxiety. Many thanks for your time and patience, as I'm sure you're exhausted by people like me posting here.

If you have read the pinned post, the presence of sensory symptoms should reassure re: ALS/MND, as they point to some other issue. Your doctor's appointment this week will provide a better idea of what might be going on.

Please take care
You don't seem to be describing ALS, so I'd expect a reassuring appointment in that regard.
Following up to the first post - I saw a PA who did a strength test and found no signs of ALS/MS. Bloodwork came back completely normal.

Fast forward one week, I wake up and my left hand feels weak. My PCP told me that he thought I had an ulnar nerve compression last year which has never really bothered me. Pinky and ring finger feel numb/weak but am not dropping any items, and have no failure with buttons etc. I just feel like my grasp and forearm are weaker.

I saw a NP morning who did some tests and thinks that it is in fact a compressed ulnar nerve (when she pressed on my elbow it made my entire forearm and hand tingle) and also hit the inside of my wrist which lit up my middle finger. She ordered an EMG to confirm and seemed confident that this is neuromuscular but I'm absolutely terrified that they're going to find ALS OR that nerve compression symptoms mimic earls ALS. Her comment was:
L hand grasp weaker than R
L tricep/bicep str although 5/5 is weaker than right
UE monofilament testing nl
Tinel test causes shooting pain from wrist through middle finger
Phalen test negative

I know that an EMG is the gold standard for confirming/dispelling but I'm terrified my anxiety won't allow me to get to that point. Any insights are appreciated.
The pressing the arm thing is a common test and it does point toward a localized (and therefore limited, nothing like ALS) issue rather than anything affecting your whole nervous system. If a person with ALS and no nerve compression had that test, the result wouldn't have been the same.

I too expect the EMG to show something that is very different than ALS, and a compressed nerve is very treatable. So I'd schedule it as soon as you can to get these fears out of the way of your good sense.
Lgelb - I am so appreciative of your patience and time. I’ve noticed the last two days the tip of my thumb on my left hand feels tingly and numb but if I bite on it for example, I feel it. Unsure if this is physical or psychosomatic. Is this a symptom that generally happens before loss of function? I know anxiety causes hyper awareness of the body but this has freaked me out further.
Please read the pinned post again about sensory issues. If you are at the point of biting your own fingers to elicit sensory responses, you may need to work with someone to address anxiety.
Often the tip of a thumb or finger feels tingly/numb due to overuse (like too much texting or gaming), leaning/sitting on it, or because of damage to nerves in the wrist/forearm as discussed above.

Don't bite yourself. Get the EMG.
hi again - would you be able to clarify if pain in the palm (I think its in the adductor pollicis) means anything? It feels like a sharp, stinging sensation. I only ask because the sticky note says that any sensory symptoms point away from ALS but then I have read that there are often misdiagnosis of carpal tunnel or ulnar nerve compression prior to an actual diagnosis. As always, your knowledge is beyond appreciated.
Hey bud, time to go back to the doctor to talk to them. We've provided as much help as we can here. You are asking about sensory issues, despite being told (and reading in the pinned post) that this points elsewhere. We would not give you a different answer even if you try to reframe it. No more posting please, as this is not an ALS issue, despite your fears.
Shiftkicker, of course. I would never abuse the purpose of this forum or the service you provide people. I'm just genuinely confused on how ulnar nerve entrapment/carpal tunnel are often misdiagnosis when both present sensory issues and ALS is defined as painless weakness, and that misunderstanding has me anxious.
My sister was convinced she had cts despite no pain only weakness. Had her ncs which she insisted on showed cts she presumably would have been diagnosed with atypical cts. It isn’t unusual for mris and electrophysiological studies to show various conditions that are asymptomatic. There are studies on it.

Now we are really done. Closing thread no posting unless you are reporting a diagnosis. I am sure it won’t be als
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