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seaann (@seaann)

Symptoms taking over my life and I’m only 33

Heart & Blood Health | Last Active: Dec 18, 2018 | Replies (8)

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@seeann In reading about your symptoms with migraines, shoulder pain, passing out, and because your symptoms change when you lie down that causes numbness, and a shock…. these are things that make me think there could be a spine related problem that might change the blood supply to your brain. Migraines can be related to altered blood supply. My best advice is to come to Mayo if you can. They will do things very quickly to figure out what is happening, and you might spend months looking for answers elsewhere and waiting weeks for appointments. It sounds like this is a problem that has been getting worse for a few years. Have you had any injuries like a whiplash that affects your neck? Between every vertebra spinal nerves exit the spinal cord. An electric shock type pain is usually nerve compression, and I have had them because I had a spine injury years ago, and I had spine surgery at Mayo after 5 local surgeons could not figure out my issues. Migraines can be caused by a spine problem when misalignment of vertebrae puts tension on muscles. There are issues like Bow Hunters Syndrome where vertebrae that are turned cut off or diminish blood supply to the brain. That certainly can cause fainting (and so can fear… I had that problem for years). If you have instability in your cervical spine and if muscle spasms are moving things around, it could cause any related symptoms to come and go. I have experienced that myself with cervical stenosis and spinal cord compression. A problem in the brain or spinal cord and exiting nerves can cause the problem somewhere else in your body if those specific nerves are not sending signals properly. There can be cysts or tumors compressing the spine too. It sounds like they are focused on your heart and not thinking about neurological issues. Spine problems can cause shoulder pain too. With lying down causing numbness, is that in your arms? Let me explain why I'm asking this. I have Thoracic Outlet Syndrome (TOS) which does cause arm numbness and it cuts off circulation. My hands used to turn blue and get cold. It is a compression of nerves and blood vessels passing between the collar bone and rib cage caused by tight muscles, injuries, or bad posture, and laying down at night made it worse because of the position of my neck and arms. I also had carpal tunnel compression in the wrist and then developed compression on the spinal cord in my neck. I had neck spasms that would cause a spasm into my chest and I went to the cardiologist, but there wasn't a heart problem. I was working with a physical therapist on the TOS when my spine got bad and for 2 years, I couldn't get a surgeon to help me. During that time, my therapist would keep realigning my spine (which was moving around because of spasms). Sometimes I walked with a limp (foot drop), and when my neck was realigned, I walked normally again. Where are you getting shocks when you lay down? Just before I had spine surgery, if I bent my neck, I could send an electric shock down my entire body. That was because there was no room around my spinal cord and in bending forward, it was stretched across the bone spurs that were digging into it. It was held in place and couldn't move as it should. TOS is often missed and most doctors don't understand it. They don't spend time on it in most medical schools. When I came to Mayo, I needed a place that understood TOS as well as my spine issues and I was so glad I came to Mayo because it changed my life. I wish I had come there first. I agree that you need to see a neurologist, and preferably one who is a specialist in brain and spine issues. A neurologist would also look for autoimmune diseases and you mentioned some abnormal blood work and inflammation. Sometimes you need to see a lot of different specialties to figure out something like this, and that is what Mayo does so well and so quickly. If you want any specific information about my Mayo doctors, just ask. I did see a spine center neurologist first before I met the spine surgeon. Please check in and let us know how you are doing. You don't have to wait the 30 days on your heart monitor tests to ask to see other specialists, like a neurologist. You do need to advocate for yourself when you think they are not listening or if they don't understand. You can always look online for answers too. I did that and found medical literature with cases like mine so I knew what 5 surgeons had missed. I sent that paper in with my request to be seen at Mayo. It may help to get copies of your medical reports and look up what you don't understand. That would tell you what your doctors are thinking, hopefully, and they might just leave out what they don't understand. I saw that with my records, and some made comments that say they didn't know why I had pain all over my body.

Here are some links for information that might help:

Thoracic Outlet Syndrome https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/thoracic-outlet-syndrome/symptoms-causes/syc-20353988
Bow Hunter's Syndrome https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3836934/
Symptoms of Numbness https://www.mayoclinic.org/symptoms/numbness/basics/causes/sym-20050938
Shoulder pain causes https://www.mayoclinic.org/symptoms/shoulder-pain/basics/causes/sym-20050696
Headaches https://www.mayoclinic.org/symptoms/headache/basics/causes/sym-20050800

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Replies to "@seeann In reading about your symptoms with migraines, shoulder pain, passing out, and because your symptoms..."

Thank you SO much for your response! To answer some of your questions, I haven’t had any significant injuries that I can think of, although I did spend most of my life in the military and in a law enforcement job so, physical activity was a constant and I’m a relatively small framed female so I’m sure I may have and brushed it off. The pain is a burning achy pain, I wouldn’t say I have many spasms. It’s more of sharps pains?? BUT my arms and legs and always cold and my lips turn blue from time to time especially after the shower. Since you mentioned that, I’ve also noticed some webbing on my skin that had blue patches, I’ll post it here, could that also be spine related like you said? Would going to a chiropractor help at all while I wait for an appointment? I’d love to go to Mayo, I’m too far away…