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Legofingers

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Hello,

I have read through the sticky and I see that if you do not have clinical weakness, then you probably shouldn't be concerned.

However I was just looking for some incite as to if my symptoms could indicate ALS.

I went to the GP today and after the exam, I was told that I will get an urgent referral for a Neuro, EMG and MRI of my head.. I asked why, and was told to rule out MS (not ALS).. I then brought up ALS as something that needed to be ruled out or not and didn't really get much of a response from the GP.

So..

About 2 weeks ago was on the up, recovering from some mild flu like symptoms. Prior to this illness I was exercising every day, just home exercises, pushups, the little weights (dumbbells?). I had stopped my daily exercises due to the flu, and whilst doing some fine detail painting I realised that my right hand seemed a bit clumsy.

I had my left had occupied with a brush and so made my attempt to pick up my cup of tea with my right, upon which I noticed that I could barely keep my wrist straight and the cup began to shake to the point of spilling it a little.

From there I went to my room (where I exercise) to test my wrist strength, whereas before my flu I was doing single handed weight easily with both arms, now my right wrist could not remain straight when lifting...

This caused me to freak out a little Ill be honest..

Don't get me wrong, the weights and the cup of tea did not feel any heavier at all in my right hand, it was just that my wrist simply couldn't maintain any straight hold, every time just drooping downwards under the weight.

So for me this doesn't exactly seem perceived.

I have also experienced quite a lot of twitches past and present over various locations around my body, without it causing worry.

But since the wrist incident, I have been having intermittent but daily twitches in my had and forearm as well as my bicep on the "weakened" arm.

Now this could be just anxiety (the twitches), and I am feeling some kind of odd sensation in the hand, like the top of the hand feels quite tight when clenching a fist, as well as the loss of some fine dexterity I had with this hand, i.e. when holding whatever small object Im painting (Citadel Minis in this case) I find my self fumbling more than usual and quite prone to drop them during periods of concentrated work.

There is no pain, just maybe a really mild sensation of muscle fatigue in my forearm and the top of my hand, no pins and needles or other sensory experiences.

Anyway I'm probably forgetting something, and I appreciate if you think I am one of those hypochondriacs you see all the time, so I am truly sorry for this..

Any input is warmly welcomed, thanks.
 

hjlindley

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It really doesn't sound like ALS to me. I would just let the doctors go through their tests and try really hard not to worry. Anxiety can cause those twitches. My onset was so subtle and was just the fingers on my right hand. Here I am seven years later, in a power chair and still breathing, eating, and talking. There are a lot of diseases they can mimic ALS. There is a specific set of tests a neurologist goes through to even consider it. These are all performed manually by the neurologist. Just remember, ALS is rare. They will look at MS, myasthenia gravis, and several other neurological disorders. Good luck. By the way, I was diagnosed in my late 50s.
Hollister
 

Legofingers

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Hi hjlindley..

Many thanks for your reply, it's honestly really appreciated.

I find it hard not to worry at the best of times, so the "urgent" referral and tests I was told about today sort of sent me a bit loopy..

These symptoms are one my less dominant hand and as such in really wracking my brain to remember exactly how clumsy I was prior to a couple of weeks back with this hand :-?

I mean somethings up for sure, but I use my left hand for most things and have really never paid much attention to exactly how my right hand copes with day to day business, I do think that I am now completely scrutinising everything I ask of my right hand along with every little sensation or ache, so I know I'm really not doing my self any favours..

But t can seek to help it at the moment.

As of today there is, what feels like a muscle ache or tiredness near where my forearm meets the elbow. Also my girlfriend grabbed me by my elbow just earlier today and whilst it certainly wasn't too painful it was tender and made me want to pull away.

I'm just concerned that maybe previously missed a whole bunch of subtle signs in the last few years, due to them being too subtle.

Thanks again.
 

Legofingers

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I don't mean to bump my own thread, and I know I have already had one generous answer, but the weakness hasn't abated in what's now probably over two weeks.

I've never experienced anything like this before, if it were a pinched/trapped nerve wouldn't there be some pain?

Also I've been searching for more benign possibilities such as carpel tunnel and I don't have the affected finger issues that would indicate CTS, or the pins and needles and ability to worsen the sensations by stretching my arm into certain positions for certain amounts of time.

I've even read a few training guides for GPs and Neuros RE what physical tests to perform etc etc and what they look for :cry:

Sorry again if you feel I'm a time waster with nothing to worry about, but the clinical weakness ie wrist drop when lifting objects like a kettle or my dumbells, along with the urgent referral to a neuro and MRI and EMG has really thrown me into something of a panic.

Whilst I am experiencing twitches in a few places, it does seem to be localised to below the elbow on the right hand.

Can clinical weakness progress that quickly ie one week able to do 20 reps raising my arm from my side outwards and not struggling to keep my wrist straight (or even thinking about it) to then a week later, only being able to accomplish one at best?
 

Nikki J

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I understand your being worried. But Painless pinched nerves can happen. It does not remind me of any ALS onset stories I know but your upcoming appointments will give you solid information. I think you have not received more answers because until you get the EMG etc it is hard to comment very much. Do you have an issue? Yes. Is it ALS? Not a familiar presentation so we are not going to say yes worry but if you do have clinical weakness we are not going to guess
Good luck with your tests and please let us know
 

Legofingers

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Thanks for your reply Nikki, I understand.

I just paid for a Neuro to answer my question on the healthcare magic app:-?

I stated everything I have said here in my OP and their response was that they do not think it's ALS due to how rare it is and the fact that is weakness cam on suddenly, he also does not think its MS as MS comes and goes whereas my weakness has been constant over 2 weeks.

He said that Acute disseminated encephalomyelitis needed to be added to the differential diagnosis..

Now.. I just made the stupid decision to google that, and it doesn't look good, in fact there is bad news written all over that one too..

Is he for real? It's been a couple of weeks since the first symptom and I haven't had a fever, not even when Ill as far as I know..

And now I've been given a possible issue that I should be calling an ambulance for? :confused:
 

Atsugi

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Regarding the ambulance:

Call an ambulance only if your health is seriously and immediately threatened or if you are in great pain that can't be controlled or the cause isn't known. ER docs are trained and equipped to stabilize your body, but they are not experienced in diagnosing stuff, nor do they have the time to work up a chronic problem.

If you've been weak for weeks and expect to be weak tomorrow, that's not an "emergent" problem. See you regular doctor on a "same day" appointment, or just walk in early.
 

Legofingers

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I'm sorry I see how I come across reading back over that message.

I have no intention of wasting anyone's time least of all doctors or paramedics. I was reading through the symptoms to ADEM and realised that I had some of the symptoms of progression, before I started reading about them, none of which could be said deemed a medical emergency.

Just the coma within days bit lead me to say something that silly at the end of my post.

I think it's best I step away from googling and try and have the patience to wait for my appointments.

My best wishes go out to you all and I thank you warmly for your replies and patience.
 

kpgarrett

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I was having very similar symptoms. Particularly the glass lifting accident. I was recently diagnosed with a trapped ulnar nerve in both elbows. With my right elbow being worse (thats the one that had trouble lifting the glass) It's treatable and worst case scenario is surgery. Just wanted to let you know some real life diagnosis that aren't so serious. I was also worried about ALS and MS, it's natural to worry.The abundance of information is a double edged sword. It helps point some people in the right direction, and completely derails others. I hope you find your answers soon!
 

Legofingers

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Thanks kpgarret, that is reassuring, I appreciate your post.
 

Legofingers

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Hi again, I feel like I should apologise for further posts..

But I just had one more question.

Would/could the onset of weakness if it were related to ALS go from being able to do 20 reps of lateral raises on the effected arm, then only just around a week later not being able to do one?

Would it go from 20 to zero? Or would it decrease gradually?

I also think some strength has returned, the wrist and forearm still feel tight and there is still a fair amount of twitching, and it also seems to ache a bit more than before (strange), and my forearm (extensors for the wrist) feel tender to touch.

Pins and needles come on quite easy in seemingly both arms, but I think it's more likely in the weaker one. The pins and needles seem to be when my elbows are bent but I'm not leaning all my weight (just lying on the couch) and the sensation seems to be restricted to my pinky and ring finger (Carpel Tunnel?).

Anyway sorry again, I've been checking a couple of times a day to see if I had any of my appointments confirmed.
 
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