Ready for answers
by Karla ° Tuesday, June 16, 2009
I’m patiently waiting for the results of the EEG I had done last week. Patiently waiting for the results after a three month wait for the test in the first place actually. Knowing that some Neurologist has a file on their desk with answers about my brain, you know, that silly gray matter in your head that kind of drives your entire existence and why mine decided to tell my body to make me completely paralyzed from my face to my toes for 30 minutes makes me just a tad anxious, you know?

We arrived for the appointment early because rush-hour traffic was actually moving and not crawling along at a snail’s pace so I told the receptionist I was just checking in and then going to get a coffee. And she was all, “Um, didn’t you read the instructions on the back of your referral sheet?” I was all, “What instructions?” The back of my referral sheet was blank but apparently you‘re not allowed to drink caffeine before an EEG and you’re also not supposed to have any products in your hair. So I totally broke the two basic rules by showing up with a brain hyper on caffeine and a knot on my head still coated in yesterday’s hair products

The prep work seriously took twice as long as the test itself and I just have to say that having someone measuring your head and making parts all over the place to colour dots where the electrodes are going to be placed felt pretty darn nice. Kind of like when you see your stylist and they give you a wicked scalp massage while they wash your hair.

I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror and hoo boy, let me tell you that 27 electrodes carefully measured and placed in a very specific pattern across your head is NOT ATTRACTIVE. More like extra terrestrial creepy alien being looking.

The technician, much to my surprise, could tell whenever I tensed my jaw or scrunched my forehead and kept telling me to relax. I kept wanting to tell her to see how relaxing it feels to have things glued all over your head. Oh, and let’s not forget the one electrode that didn’t want to stick to my greasy forehead so now there is a giant piece of tape there thank you very much.

One part of the EEG test was to check for epilepsy but I’m pretty sure that won’t be part of the diagnosis because the part where I had to lay in the dark with my eyes closed while flashing lights of various speeds where directed at my eyes kind of just made me feel like hitting up a night club and dancing.

At one point they did try to induce a panic attack and had me breathe very rapidly for three minutes. I felt my entire head go numb. Seriously. Apparently this is totally normal. I forgot to ask though if it’s normal normal, or normal if your head is broken normal.

I haven’t talked about this yet, but I’ve had god, I don’t even know what to call them. Incidents? Episodes? Fleeting Moments of Fuckedness? Whatever they are, they haven’t been nearly as frightening as full body paralysis because I have to be honest here people, the thought of living my life with claw-like clenched up fingers and both sides of face looking like they completely melted freaked me right the fuck out. So, thank god that whole, whatever it was, only happened once but what has happened again always starts the exact same way with the sensation that something is squeezing the back of my head. And it drives me batty because I know it’s there and it doesn’t exactly hurt, it’s just a strange feeling of pressure somewhere deep in my head and no amount of rubbing or counter pressure can fix it.

Within hours, sometimes minutes, the pressure intensifies and then my vision blurs, my skin turns salt-pale and then my fingers start to tingle. Sometimes its just a tingle. Sometimes I lose feelings in them for a bit. It just depends on, well, I have no idea what triggers it actually. I just recognize the first symptoms of its onset and then when its over spend a good few hours feeling so damn anxious about whatever the hell just happened.

The last time it happened I was sitting on the couch with Mark. I’d been feeling the pressure in the back of my neck all morning and was trying to ignore it when all of a sudden I shot up and told him, “I AM NOT OK!” After about 15 minutes of blurred vision, clammy skin and tingling in my fingers it was over.

Hardly unmanageable, but not exactly something you want in your life right?

I’m ready for answers.


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That sucks!! I think it may be panic attacks. I had them for 9 years and they are atypical. I had physical symptoms...v. similar to what you are describing. I had every test under the sun...MRI's, CAT Scans, EEGs, Sleep deprived EEGs, Blood work. etc, etc, etc.

Went for regular therapy, CBT and did a ton of exercises. Nothing worked. They stopped 6 months ago. I have no idea why. Very strange, but common for women our age apparently.
Posted by Blogger Kristine :  June 16, 2009

Lo peor de todo es no saber qué te pasa. Cuando lo sabes, te tranquilizas, porque ya sabes como luchar y cómo poner remedio. No me imagino que meses de angustia habrás pasado...
Yo tengo presión intracraneal, mucha agua en el cerebro, por causa desconocida. Me apareció a los 25 años. Me pasa a veces el hormigueo en la punta de los dedos, la visión se hace borrosa y parece que dejo de ver a ambos lados de los ojos, siento presion en mi cabeza, dentro de ella, pero no dolor, y a veces siento que me puedo desmayar.
La buena noticia es que tomando un díurético, el agua de mi cabeza se elimina. Puede que tengas algo parecido... pero la ansiedad también influye muchísimo, y puede provocar parálisis temporal.
Deseo de todo corazón que todo vaya bien... ¡estoy segura!
Posted by Anonymous Susana :  June 16, 2009

Hope all is well Karla. And that the results don't take an eternity to come back.
A x
Posted by Blogger Amanda :  June 16, 2009

I'm crossing my fingers for you. It sounds very scary, and I hope it turns out well.
Posted by Blogger ccr in MA :  June 16, 2009

Wow honey, I'm so sorry. That is so scary! Those doctors had better get their shit together, figure it out and get you going on whatever will fix it.
Thinking about you and wishing you the best through this frightening time for you.
Posted by Blogger Finelly :  June 17, 2009

Goodness, Karla. I hope you get your answers soon!
Posted by Blogger Candi :  June 17, 2009

Karla, I don't want to freak you out more but how do they know that it wasn't something indicative of a slight stroke? Have they done tests to rule this out?
Posted by Anonymous Anonymous :  June 17, 2009

hi Anonymous,
God, no extra freak out there. When Mark called 9-1-1 he thought I was having a stroke. The EEG (as I understand) will help determine (or rule) that possibility out.
Posted by Blogger karla :  June 17, 2009

I really hope you get some answers.. that's really scarey.

I hope that you have all the results very soon and then at least you will know what is going on.
Take care of yourself ~ sending love and big hugs your way
Tabitha XXXX
Posted by Blogger Tabitha :  June 20, 2009


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