Tuesday, February 7, 2012

I'm getting brain surgery

Well, you always know that a week is going to go well when the first thing you hear on a Monday afternoon is that you need brain surgery. Apparently, I'm so smart that my head can't even hold my brain anymore. It's actually leaking out of the bottom.

Of course, this has a real name. It's called Arnold-Chiari Malformation. Don't know how I got it or how long I've had it but I have had symptoms for years. They were passed off as being other things: pregnancy related,  depression, epilepsy, etc. Finally, someone looked for something else in the MRI and found that my brain is actually protruding into my spinal column.

This is no "cure" for this, only the treatment of the symptoms. Hence, the brain surgery. That's the one and only option.

I hate that I have to get my head shaved.

I actually feel pretty good about it. Nice to know what is going on.

Not everyone has symptoms with this but if you do have symptoms they can get pretty bad. Mine are pretty bad. They include:

·          Balance issues-leaning to one side while I try to walk sometimes
·          Weakness- weakness in legs and in arms
·          Difficulty closing hands-hand wants to form a claw
·          Tingling in left hand and arm-feels like pins and needles
·          Crawling sensation on skin
·          Itching all over body
·          Spasms in legs and lower back
·          Tremors in left hand
·          Fatigue
·          Memory problems (can’t remember words, where I am, what I was supposed to be doing)
·          Pain around my waist
·          Sudden, painful cramping in bowels with no bowel movements
·          Blurry vision
·          Eye pain
·          Increased headaches
·          Lower back pain
·          Dizziness
·          Problems with the cold (can’t stay warm) 

Sometimes, these happen all at once and that's not fun at all. 

So, I'm meeting with the neurosurgeon to see what can be done. Never a dull moment in our household. 

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