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Nov 4, 2007
Learn about ALS
Hi all:

I had an EMG today and I wonder why no one mentioned that I would be stabbed with a needle about 30 times... :cry: My EMG was on both hands as this is where I am experiencing stiffness. I was having tingling (pins and needles) at night in both hands and even some minor cramping, and though the tingling and cramping have passed I still have the stiffness. I was also having some issues with the arches of my feet (they are falling) which led to cramping and pain along the plantar tendon.

Back to the EMG, that was a fun-filled hour with the charismatic Dr. Le (ROFL). Okay, so he tests my left hand/wrist first, then my right. About twenty minutes into the tests he starts making Doctor noises (hmmm. mmmm. mmmmm-hmmmm) I think this was mainly to let me know that he had not fallen asleep. Anyway, he eventually says "I think the pain in you feet seperate issue." I ask why and he says because of the indication he is reading on the monitor.

Final results show minor nerve damage in both wrists. I am not sure how they quantify nerve damage, but he explained it as a normal number would be 39, and I was showing 38.9. He said all muscle functions were normal, which would not support a neuro-muscular disorder. I also had minor nerve damage in my right elbow, but he said it was the kind of damage you see from leaning on one elbow too much. I tore a muscle in my left shoulder years ago and I kind of baby my left side, so maybe that explains it. I have terrible posture and lean on my elbows a lot at work.

So, my EMG result was not normal, but my doctor told me not to worry and go get some wrist/hand braces to sleep with, because he thinks the nerve damage is carpal tunnel syndrome. I hope he's right, but just to make sure I am going for a second opinion tommorrow. I sure hope the next Doctor is just as much fun. :-D

Any thoughts on my EMG results?
hi JAndrew. I guess we should have prepared you for what an EMG actually is! :) They are great fun, aren't they? Some of us have had 6 or 7. Me, I'm done for a bit. When my legs give out totally then maybe I'll get needled again.

Good news about the carpal tunnel, though. Definately get the braces. It will help a lot. And stay off the elbows. If you wreck your ulner nerves it is not so easy to correct that. But what did he think is causing the trouble in your feet?

One last bit of advice: if you get a second opinion, make the appointment for a few months from now since you want to give the braces time to correct the carpal tunnel. And you might want to go to an ALS clinci if you haven't done so already for the next round of needle sticks. Regards, Cindy
2 cents

Hi - just thought id share this thought for what it's worth -
Ff the arches in your feet are falling, you could be experiencing some
plantar facceitis ( SP?) Mt friend and I both have gone through this - it's quite painful and can radiate up the leg too. I wear braces on my legs at night and it helps put my foot / plantar tendon in a 90 degree anglee - the braces actually are quite comforting - and when morning comes, I don't feel like I'm walking on a bed of jagged rocks...

Yes, I was diagnosed with Plantar Fasciitis at the Podiatrists office. It really hurts, especially along my arches. The second neuro that I saw told me I have a funny gait. He said I walk like a duck and that can lead to things like fallen arches (I walk about 25-30 miles a week).

Thanks for the tip, Cindy.

I'll give it a few months and then see another Neuro. I sent a request to be seen at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, but the two Neuromuscular Specialists there only see specific patients and I am still waiting to hear back from them. Dr. Le never gave me an opinion on my feet. He never even looked at them. The second Neuro I saw (Dr. Loar) did not administer an EMG, but he did a thorough exam on all of my extremities and we talked about my EMG results. He told me not to worry, but he said I could make an appointment for an EMG for lower and upper extremeties if I wanted to. So, I figure I'll wait a few months and then go see him for the EMG. I'm pretty happy for now :-D and if I get diagnosed with something else later down the road I'll just deal with it then.

Thanks for your responses. There is a lot of encouragement to be found here.


That is wonderful news for you!

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome can be very painful, but it is treatable. If you have surgery, just do one hand at a time or you will need help doing certain things!;-)

Good luck to you!
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