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STRADER

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I have been having a great deal of symptoms that I initially thought was MS because of its similarities. I have since seen to doctors my primary who feels that it is either ALS or myasthenia gravis. My primary doctor ran all potential blood work and everything came back normal. During my exam I failed the hand eye coordination test and had both horizontal and vertical nystagmus noted. I have confirmed slurred speech in addition to switching words that are not correct, such as saying rice when I meant price. I have had and continue to have muscle spasms in arms legs and stomach. I have weakness in the arms legs and if I walk or stand too long my right knee starts to buckle. I have since had a modified barium swallow test which came positive for joking during swallowing liquids and is recommended honey thick liquids. I frequently choke on my own saliva or drinks. I have had some dementia type of issues. I have muscle cramps in legs and arms and pain in my joints especially my hands. I am now becoming extremely fatigued after very small amount of exertion such as mopping the floor is having me experience respiratory heaving. I also am unable to now sleep on my stomach due to hard time breathing. I also feel as if I’m having symptoms of a sore throat that do not go away.
I have had a brain scan MRI that came out normal and a recent test to disqualify MG which also came out normal. The symptoms that do not appear to be ALS related appears to be my intention tremor. I also have some issues with my eyes where it seems as if they get sore and see us to have a little difficulty if I look at something for too long which makes sense based upon the diagnosis of nystagmus. My neurologist confirmed that there was no chance of me having MS or Parkinson’s and is now ordering an MRI of my neck to see if there was some damage to the brain stem.
I understand there’s been many here that stated that intention tremor is not a ALS symptom and my neurologist suggested the same, but based upon all my other symptoms they appeared to resemble a diagnosis of ALS. I do understand there’s still a lot of road to rule out ALS but I was wondering if intention tremor can also be a part of it diagnosis of ALS.

Thank You
 

STRADER

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i Also have an exaggerated gag reflex and exaggerated reflexes as per neuro
 

Nikki J

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I am sorry for all your symptoms. Has your neurologist done an EMG? If he or she is considering ALS as a strong possibility it seems like it should be in the plan. If you had one what did it show?
 

STRADER

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No not yet. Just finished Mri of neck.
 

notme

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An EMG is the next step.

Much of what you post isn't ALS--but some sounds similar--that's the problem. ALS is the great mimic disease. So many things neurologically cause similar issues.

See how an EMG goes--but ALS shouldn't be affecting your eyes--though MS certainly can. Other diseases as well. And, keep in mind, more than ONE thing can be going on.

I read a quote by a doctor "Don't assume it's one condition, a body can have as many damn diseases as it wants"

It's sometimes dangerous to lump everything together. How was Parkinson's 100% ruled out? What is your age? Other things come into play besides 'signs and symptoms'.
 

STRADER

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Thank you. I agree it could be several things. This seems progressing fast. Not sure way parkinsons was ruled out,but it was by both docs. I read that nystagmus can present but its usual. My weakness is getting so bad having a hard time holding a gallon of milk.
 

notme

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What did they think was causing the choking?

They should have suggested something to help it. I wish I could say what was next--but I'd guess the EMG.

I couldn't lift a gallon of milk if my life depended on it. it takes me two hands to lift a 2liter of diet coke. I've had a mug 32oz I'd used for years--I can no longer use it. IT's too heavy. I can't push microwave buttons, car lock button combination locks, or button shirts.

My daughter opens all jars and bottles ahead of time for me, thankfully. My hands are shot--legs are shot--and no one has a clue why--so just let them sort you out :) It takes time. Try not to think worse-case scenarios.

With the swallowing, also try to tip your head forward. That should help prevent aspirating food or liquids into your lungs--which causes a nasty pneumonia
 

STRADER

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Neuro office just ordered the emg, so I will have more info soon. The swallow test showed velectler pooling. The speech therapist said that was muscle related. so hopefully I'll get some answers soon thank you all for your comments and help. I really appreciate it.
 

notme

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Good luck on the EMG. Let us know!
 
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