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Abdominal Numbness - possible MS
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Hi Everyone,

About a month ago I noticed numbness on the left side of my abdomen from the middle of my back around the right hip area to my belly button. I had no idea what it was or what might have caused it. Went to my primary dr. who ordered a lumbar/Thoracic MRI which was abnormal showing demylenation at about T5. The cervical and Brain MRI were normal. The did the evoked potential but I don't have the results. I also had a spinal LP and the first test showed an increased protein suggesting infection. More tests are being done on the spinal fluids, no results yet. Lyme test - negative. My primary and neuro both say possible MS. But I think now with the spinal fluid protein this could be another kind of infection that's eating my spinal cord.

This is really scary and I have a new respect for people with MS and other neuro disorders. I plan to start trying to meet people in the Boston area for mutual support.

Question - can demylenation be reversed or healed - can mylen grow back over the nerves to protect them or will my abdomen be numb forever?

I fear I may have a problem worse than MS. It could be a progressive automimmune response that is untreatable. I'm 42 and things were just starting to get good for me.

God Bless you all and good luck!
Posted on 06/24/07, 02:49 pm
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Reply #1 - 06/24/07  8:02pm
" thats how my ms started, i had numbness from my breast down and and around my abdominal area. the bottom of the left foot wasnumb too, my dr orderd a brain mri, and there was white spots, my spine mri showed a rash around the t5 on my spine, i still have that, dr said it can take up to a year for that to go away. he put me on steroids for that, and some of the numbness went away, but i found out that i have ms, and i had no clue i did.
see a nuro and do the brain mri, thats the only you'll know for sure.
take care
hope you feel better
jav "
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Reply #2 - 06/24/07  10:48pm
" I remember learning in school that the central nervous system did not heal, but since then, that is no longer believed to be true. If the body is given a chance to heal, the central nervous system will heal. The problem is stopping or slowing down the cause of the demyelination. I felt almost no touch sensation from the chest down 3 years ago (I could still feel pressure and temperature) Much of my sensation came back, but then I had another relapse a little over a year ago with increased loss of sensation again, although not as bad. Over the past year, I have been getting better, but I have kind of lost my reference point for what is normal. I do adjust somewhat to the change. When I think I am getting close to having my sensation back, I get back more and realize what I had before was still quite deficient. The worst areas for me still are the left side of my abdomen and the bottoms of my feet. Overall the healing does happen slowly. I did see a significant improvement in my sensation after Solumedrol with the first relapse I was referring to. With the second relapse,I saw a significant improvement after having B12 shots and then increasing my Vitamin D (which I was deficient in. There is hope for healing, and I do hope that you can determine what is causing the demyelination! "
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Reply #3 - 06/24/07  11:32pm
" Hi mike. Please try not to worry yourself sick. Especially by thinking it might be something untreatable :(

You numbnes can be a sign of MS, or something else entirely. It is one of the most popular MS symptoms. If MS related, like any symptom, it can come and go quickly, stay for a long time, then suddenly disappear. It can ease up some, etc... But numbness can also a sign of B-12 deficiency, and as Ronnie stated, it could be a Vitamin D issue, or both.

And just to let you know, increased protein levels can be a sign of a viral infection, however, it is also one of the indicators used when seeking an MS diagnosis. You mentioned that since your protein levels were increased, you did not think it was MS, but just the opposite could be true.

Demylination is also a sign of MS. Do you know exactly what that part of the report states? Hoping you have a copy, look and see if it says anywhere "MS". It doesn't HAVE to, but would help sort things out.

If it IS MS, sstay calm, as stress is not good for us! so try to think the opposite, that it could very well be that you are in need of some heavy duty B-12 or D! but at the same time, be prepared for an MS dx. I do hope it isn't, but an MS diagnosis is NOT a death sentence, and there are treatments to help, and support groups like this!

Best wishes and keep us posted! "
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Reply #4 - 06/24/07  11:47pm
" At 20, (diagnosed at 21) I was experiencing severe numbness from my waistline down...swear to god I couldn't feel a damn thing. The dr, said it was b/c of tanning, well the neuro visit proved him wrong, but anyway...stay pro-active and dilligent. "
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Reply #5 - 06/25/07  12:17am
" Hello Mike,

I can certainly relate to the abdominal numbness and numbness in the lower back as well. Although my symptoms began in my right foot, the tingling/numbness spread up to the breast on the right side and then started in on the left side. The good news? After IV steroids, all numbness left except for right foot and some tingling in both hands. Nothing that I cannot live with.

If it is MS, don't panic. There are worse diseases one could get. Strides have been made in MS...particularly in meds. that slow down the progression. I find MS to be more of a hassle than anything else (weekly injections).

Please let us know what you find out! Welcome to Daily Strength--this is a great site with fantastic people. : ) "
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Reply #6 - 06/25/07  8:37am
" Hi Mike. I'm reading a book about MS research now and it covers the question about demylenation. It can be healed but, according to the book I'm reading, those nerves will not conduct as they did before the demylenation, even if the myelan comes back. With MS, though, you can have times of remittance where you feel completely normal. "
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Reply #7 - 06/25/07  12:52pm
" Back in 1997, I was up to bat during a softball game. I had a weak swing and surprisingly, I hit the ball. I started running towards first base and I collapsed when I left the batter's box. I crawled to first base. When I reached there, I took the bag in my arms and I layed underneath it. The umpire called me safe. I knew there was something wrong there. My legs were weak to the point I could not stand up. I pulled myself out of the game. That started my 2 - 3 year journey to find what the 'ell was wrong with me. Docyors said I had an inner ear infection. Others said to drink plenty of water. I knew that there was something else! "
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Reply #8 - 06/25/07  3:08pm
" Thanks for the great responses and info. Seems like there are a lot of good people out there with MS. I'm looking forward to getting to know you.

Mike "
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Reply #9 - 06/01/13  10:01pm
" Hi, I've been reading all of this and here is my story. About three weeks ago I started having a numbness and burning senstation under my left breast right at the top of the rib cage. The burning is so severe it hurts to have clothes on. Went to the ER and they ran blood work, cat scan, x-rays, and the results came back normal on all. The doc, told me he thought I had shingles. Now that i'm reading this Maybe I have MS symptoms? the shingles he said I have doesn't have a rash, it's just under the skin it burns and is numb. Now, since yesterday, the numbness is going down into my left leg now,it stops at my knee. I keep thinking this will get better, but, now that it's like spreading down my leg, I just wonder if it is something like MS. He told me He thought I had shingles but, didn't write a script for the shingles, just pain pills. That was two weeks ago, I'm still numb, and it's getting worse. I go to a charity type hospital, cause of no ins., and I'm tired of going there and them guessing what could be wrong.Just don't know what to do.... "
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Reply #10 - 06/02/13  4:20pm
" Hi cayun.

I have spinal cord lesions due to ms. my biggest flare started as an ascending numbness and weakness. Now im head to toes numb and rolling with rolator. Contact the msaa they help you with dx "

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