Initial Symptoms Question - 25 Y/O M

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Anon123

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Hello everyone... To keep it brief, around 3 months ago I noticed a twitch in my right deltoid/tricep muscle. As a medical student, I am used to drinking a lot of caffeine and staying up late so I chalked this twitch up to these things. Over the next few days I became a little more concerned as it didn't really subside. Since this time, I have more twitching in the same areas (in addition, my right elbow and left arm have started to twitch in the same spots). Likewise, my legs (calves and arches of feet) have also started to twitch. I know the tell-tale sign of ALS is weakness, and over the last month I have started to notice a slowness in my right thumb. Texting or moving my fingers certain way will cause debilitating hand cramps, or my thumb will simply not do the motion I ask of it.

In addition, I have had persistent night sweats (2-3 times per week) as well as persistent awakenings in my sleep due to paresthesias (numbness and tingling) in my right hand. Both of these started over the last month.

I met with a local neurologist who has experience in ALS diagnosis and he recommended an EMG. My EMG showed evidence of a painless, C8/T1 radiculopathy on my right hand. I've seen him for a few follow ups still complaining of the initial symptoms, in addition to the new ones, and we have both agreed to wait to do another EMG this upcoming week, and look more into the weakness of my thumb.

Has anyone else experienced these initial symptoms? I am a 25 y/o male who has been fairly active.

Thanks for your help, I respect your tremendous amount of courage and willingness to help others.
 

lgelb

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You have a rational explanation for the hand/thumb issue, often exacerbated by typing and texting, which, as a med student, I'll bet you do some. YouTube and your textbooks are replete with exercises to try. And twitches often extend from areas of pain or stiffness.

I'll bet your sleep isn't a model of sleep hygiene, either, not to mention the caffeine, which can catch up with you. Both can account for your fragmented sleep, including night sweats.

So hand ex and sleep hygiene are two areas to explore. I don't see any reason to think about ALS.

I would also do a RAT or PCR just in case, if you haven't recently.

Best,
Laurie
 

RKeller

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Hello. I'm a 52 year old man and have been active all my life. 3 years ago I started having difficulty with my speech. Then difficulty with swallowing and falling down a lot. I went to see a neurologist. He believed I had ALS. I did a EMG test and it didn't show anything. He believed it was early and in the beginning stages. I had several MRIs which showed nothing. During this time I started having difficulty walking. My legs were stiff. Everything was getting worse. After several tests to rule things out, my doctor diagnosed me with ALS. I started having muscle twitching in my arms, shoulders, calves and feet. Recently I started having severe cramps in my calves and feet. I was living out of state and a year ago I had to move back to be near my family. I'm on disability. I can't drive or work. In a year I've gone from a walking cane to a walker then to a wheelchair. I now have a ventilator. In 2 months I am moving in with my parents. I need full time care. My muscles continue to get weaker. My spasms and cramps are worse. I'm on medication to address my problems. At this point its about making my time left as comfortable as possible. I hope you find out what's going on. Wish you the best. God bless
 

Anon123

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Thanks for the reply. I will also do one of those as well. I have been off for the last month due to summer vacation, so I really am trying to get back into a healthy routine. I have noticed that my symptoms are exacerbated greatly in my right hand when its cold out. But, I with my neurologist who placed me on Gabapentin for the twitches and wants to see how I respond. If it doesn't get any better he will refer me out to a clinic for a second opinion. Thanks for the kind words and advice.
 
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