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Mandobear22

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My name is Amanda and I am 38. I have had some issues going on and would like your feedback.
1st, I noticed weakness a couple years ago. I went to get milk out of the fridge and noticed a weakness in 1 arm.

I had also noticed twitching and started having panic attacks shortly after, which I was treated for. Twitching and panic attacks stopped.

I had weightloss surgery in March 2018, lost 80lbs and decided to get off Cymbalta, which kept my panic attacks away. I have done great with that and have not had anymore.

I have started noticing that my leg muscles don't look as big, my arms don't look as big and my hands don't look as big. I figured it was due to weight loss. I'm sure I lost a lot of muscle bc I sat on my butt for years, I know atrophy can occur.

I started having widespread fasciculations and feeling weak about a month ago. Twitching happens every day, more when I am relaxed. My leg feels tired as I'm driving, numbness in legs and toes, leg heaviness, tension in my legs, soreness of muscles.

My hands started hurting (tops, bottoms and joints,) feels like they always want to crack. I thought it could be carpal tunnel, as I worked at a call center and was on a computer almost everyday for 4 years. But after reading everything here, I remember seeing a "dent/indention" on my hand. I am posting a picture of it here. I do not have the same indention on the other hand. I tried doing a strength test and can not feel much resistance on my left ring finger. But, I do not recall every having twitching there. Is that strange? Should there be if it's truly ALS?

I have also noticed that my fingers on both hands don't "work right." Example... I pick something up and it's like my ring finger turns weird, this happens on both hands. Caused by atrophy/weakness? Idk.. Does this sound like Al's? Could those muscles be failing, causing the fingers to kind of roll to grab hold of something? When the finger rolls, there is pain.

I have appt w Neuro soon.

I had went to PCP Dr a month back when I only had twitches, she gave me Gabapentin. I started taking it after I noticed what I think is atrophy in my hands a couple days ago. It has helped the pain in my hands and slowed down twitching. Does Gabapentin do that in ALS?

I'm posting a pic of my hand, I hope you can see the indention I am talking about. I have also been a little off balance when I turn corners.

I thank you for your help and made a donation, in hopes for a cure for ALS.

Thank you,
Amanda
 

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lgelb

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Hi Amanda,

I am assuming your PCP has checked you for diabetes and nutritional deficiencies? I would certainly follow up with her. If gabapentin helps, the pain could be nerve pain from several causes, but that is nothing to do with ALS.

I don't think you have ALS or anything like it, so likely the neuro will reassure you. Weight loss surgery, panic attacks (glad to hear they are better) and going off Cymbalta can certainly have after-effects.

Best,
Laurie
 

Mandobear22

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Hi Laurie,
I want to 1st thank you for taking the time to read & reply to my post. My Dr did check for diabetes & checked my vitamins and minerals. All tests came back ok. I had asked her if she could check for weakness, she said she could. She had me push up with my knees from a sitting position, she had me push up against her hands with my feet and had me lay down and push with my knees. I did not show her my hand that I'm worried about, sid not even think about it as being a symptom. Idk if the dip is from the weightloss or wasting.
I had gotten off my Cymbalta in June, so it should not affect the twitches. My hands just look so thin and weird. I'm praying it's nothing big but in my heart, I am worried. Thank you for your encouraging words, thank you so much.

Thank you for your opinion and explanation. I can definitely still move the fingers from right to left and am able to pick stuff up, even though it's weird when I do... sometimes. My ring finger moves easily when I use my right hand to squeeze the ring finger and middle finger together. So, I think it's weak but not paralyzed bc I can still move it right to left. But, the muscle there is definitely smaller. So, it does not sound like ALS atrophy. You are right.
Again, thank you!! Thank you for taking the time to help others :)
 
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Vincent

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Atrophy is not a thing on its own. Muscles atrophy from not being used. In the case of ALS the muscles are not being used because the nerve that tells the muscle to contract has died. So the process is weakness-paralysis-atrophy. You not having anything you are unable to do would not have atrophy as much as weight loss. I don't see anything that would make me suspect ALS. Lucky you.
Vincent
 

Mandobear22

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Thank you for your response and thank you for helping others. Once the muscle gets paralyzed, can you move them at all? Also, do the muscles that get paralyzed twitch while wasting?
Thank you again for your help.
 
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ShiftKicker

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Paralysis means just that- paralyzed. So no. You can't move them.

Mandobear, the specificity of your posts indicates a pretty severe health anxiety with regards to ALS, despite being reassured you don't show the symptom pattern. The folks here can provide basic information- which you have received- but you are encouraged to follow up with your doctor with regards to questions about your own symptoms and health. Unless you are told there is something neurological going on by your doctor, this forum is not really the place to hang out to satisfy curiosity about paralysis and twitching.

I refer you back to the https://www.alsforums.com/forum/do-...-common-concerns-about-possible-symptoms.html thread. If you read it through carefully, it addresses pretty much everything you have asked here and provides some recommendations about what to do once folks here have spent some time answering you and addressing your concerns.

Please speak with your doctor and let them know your concerns. They are in a position to help you by providing you information specific to you and to refer you to the proper specialists if needed.
 
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