Very Dirty EMG (pics attached). Scared With No Answers.

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Tag90

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Hello All. First I want to say thank you so much for taking time to read this post.

31 year old male. Software Developer.

It all started with muscle twitches all over my body in early December 2021. I went down the google rabbit hole and became insanely scared. I suffer from diagnosed OCD and Health Anxiety Disorder. I sought out a neurologist to explain my concerns about the muscle twitching and she gave me a clinical exam and said "Well, you don't show any sings of weakness but we will go ahead with an EMG so we can rule your worries out for you." Fast forward to my EMG (which was done by a "Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation Specialist" and not a Neurologist). I was hoping that i would get the all clear after getting the results. Unfortunately that did not happen. It came back very dirty with some very concerning findings on both the EMG and the NCS. When I followed up with my Neurologist about the results and she said "well there is definitely something going on but it could be 100 different things, don't just jump to ALS." They want to do a muscle biopsy and a genetics test on me BUT they said "these tests aren't an emergency" and they have yet (after 2 weeks) to find any doctors who will perform these for me. I have called the multiple times and asked them if they have found anyone to do this and they are still being dismissive about it. They pretty much said I should try and look myself for doctors who will do them for me. My life have been put completely on hold. I cant stop crying, can't get any work done, can barely get out of bed, have been recording videos for my son to remember me by. It's been an absolute nightmare.

What are the odds that a dirty emg this bad with these findings are going to end up being ALS? From all the case studies I have been reading and from all the research I have done, it is looking a lot like that what the final diagnosis will be. I am having such a hard time accepting that ALS is the most likely outcome.

Thanks again everyone for reading this.
 

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Nikki J

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Very dirty emg? I was expecting a lot more than there is. What are the odds this is ALS? Extremely low I think. Your neurologist isn’t pushing this because she is viewing this as unlikely to be anything horrible. Stop googling and get help for your admitted anxiety so you can pursue a diagnosis for your symptoms in a calm organized manner
 

Bestfriends14

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I'm going to be very blunt: I have no idea why you are throwing your life away on a disease that nothing in your alleged symptoms point to, nothing your clinical exams point to, and nothing your EMG points to. Go get help for your nosophobia disorder ASAP and be there for your child. Start today because the time you waste being totally absorbed in a disease you don't have and not with your child, is precious time you will never, ever get back.

It is only a nightmare because you have made it so. I'm not sure how long you've not been present for your child, but only you can change that going forward. Think about it, you'll never get this time back and as a parent, you should be focused on your child who needs you now. Health anxiety is treatable whereas ALS is not. You are very lucky not to be terminally ill.

You.dont.have.ALS.
 
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lgelb

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I'm glad you "have a hard time accepting" that it's ALS, because you don't need to, at all. This is not an ALS EMG, nor anything likely to require treatment at the moment. Think about it -- you have no functional deficit, so why would you need to rush into further testing? Many people would not have received an EMG at all, and be no worse off.

You have received good advice, and I hope you follow it, for your own sake and that of your family.

Best,
Laurie
 

Clearwater AL

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Tag… really?

Software Developer ? You – you should know more than
most what the internet is… as you said below.

“I went down the google rabbit hole and became insanely
scared.”

“My life have been put completely on hold. I can’t stop crying,
can't get any work done, can barely get out of bed, have been
recording videos for my son to remember me by. It's been an
absolute nightmare.”

Second sentence first structured paragraph…
“I suffer from diagnosed OCD and Health Anxiety Disorder.”

Key word… diagnosed.

Almost all that follows that sentence goes right back to…OCD and
Health Anxiety Disorder.

Please get much more help for that diagnosis… for your son.
 

johnny5

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EMG does not look that bad.

In ALS, you would be looking at Fibs (fibrillations) and Fasc (fasciculations). These two would indicate loss of axon, or denervation, which is the hallmark of ALS. You also look at MUAP (motor unit action potential). The MUAP would be larger, indicated by +, ++, +++, which shows reinnervation. Reinnervation is how the body responds to denervation typically. As motor neurons die, any other motor neurons near that area will attempt to grow into the denervated muscle.

ALS is diagnosed by ruling out everything else, and neuron loss may also be caused by other conditions.

I am not a neuro specialist, but in my lay opinion, you should be relieved, and looking for something that is causing your symptoms outside of ALS/motor neuron disease. Neurologists typically will follow up in 6 months +/- to ensure the diagnosis is correct, that is why ALS takes so long to diagnost.
 

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I’ve also started twitching on my left FDI muscle (where my EMG was dirty). I am beyond scared and don’t know what to do.

sorry for bugging everyone I am just beside myself with fear.
 

Clearwater AL

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Tag, you keep calling your "(where my EMG was dirty)... that word "dirty" is
not an accurate description of any EMG which can mean so many other
circumstances.

"sorry for bugging everyone I am just beside myself with fear."

That fear is coming from your own post...

You do not have ALS. You do have a diagnosis of....

" I suffer from diagnosed OCD and Health Anxiety."

Posting anything more here isn't going to change a damned
thing... sorry for the language but as the legendary news
broadcaster "Walter Cronkite" used to close his segment....

"And that's the way it is."
 

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twitching means nothing and you are moving into an area of inappropriate posting - you are expecting the terminally ill and their carers to support your unfounded fears.
please return to your doctor for further help, I'm so sorry you are in this situation, but ALS is really not on the radar which is great
 

johnny5

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"I am just beside myself with fear."

I have heard this so many times. Honestly, until a specialist tells you that you have something to fear, it is all just imagination. The fasciculations can be caused by a lot of different things, including exhaustion and strenuous exercise. I wish that all of my EMG's were like yours, but after 8 of them, not 1 even compared.

In theory, you are thinking this "might" be ALS.

In reality, your doctors and the EMG analyst(a trained neurologist), who are both professionals, are saying it is not ALS.

Who should you believe?

Think about it.
 

Vincent

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I would kill for that EMG. Unfortunately I have an EMG that suggests ALS. Every line on on that report says normal. Please go and give everyone a high five, hug or whatever you do. You will live to see how the world turns out 40 years hençe. Enjoy!!!!
 

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Just wanted to provide an update. Was not happy about lack of communication from previous neurologist so I ended up seeing a new one this past Monday to maybe get some more answers about my EMG. To my surprise he explained he was one top MND specialists in the area and usually has the final say when is comes to diagnosis of these diseases for patients.

I showed him my EMG and explained to him it wasn't even done by a Neurologist, he wasn't too happy about that. He saw the results and wants to do his own EMG himself on me this coming Tuesday. He did a full top to bottom clinical exam on me and noticed nothing interesting. I explained my concerns about my left FDI muscle twitch and the stiff feeling in my index finger. He didn't really think much of it because as far as I know he didn't detect weakness there. "As far as an ALS diagnosis, I'm not amused."

Although I am still super nervous about my left hand twitches and finger stiffness and that he wants to do another EMG, I am trying my best to let Tuesday come.

I want to thank everyone so much for letting me vent and share my story. Hoping more than anything on Tuesday I can put this behind me and be a support to those who are having fears as well.
 

Nikki J

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It is extremely common that ALS specialists want their own emgs so that is nothing to be surprised at or worried about. They are being thorough Your exam was normal rejoice
 

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You really need to relax on this, and I hope you believe the results on Tuesday.
Once that is done, you will be wise to look after your mental health and leave this site.
At any rate, we don't have the undiagnosed supporting others with ALS fears here, it isn't healthy for you to even try to do that.
Go, rejoice, and start living!
 

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Tag, your new Neurologist…

“He didn't really think much of it because as far as I know he didn't
detect weakness there.”

"As far as an ALS diagnosis, I'm not amused."

Key word, “ he didn't detect weakness there.”

"He did a full top to bottom clinical exam on me and noticed
nothing interesting.” (Noticed nothing interesting.)

Then…

“and wants to do his own EMG himself on me this coming Tuesday.”

Probably because of your persistence he’s doing “CHA” (cover his…).
AND… EMGs bring in $$$ revenue. Why not? And the office visits too.

You’ve already had enough to believe/assure … but do Tuesday.
 
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