Electrical Discharges on EEG - causality?

Posted by flowerbloom @flowerbloom, Feb 22, 2020

I’ve been feeling very unwell for the past 2 months. My main symptoms are dizzines, nausea, ocasionally i’m struggling to finish my sentences and my head empties(still aware, but way different from just losing my train of thought), agitation, headache, different vision disturbances (i now continuously experience some level of visual snow), tunnel vision on low light, muscle jerks. The nausea becomes worse with making an effort to think complex things/learning and physical effort. Every time i do that i get worsening nausea and dizziness, somewhat similar to motion sickness. For this reason i had to stop my studies. I was a straight A student. I became quite depressed, feeling continuously nauseated and laying in bed all day with no improvement of symptoms. I had something i was working towards now i can’t even read a page without getting sick.

I have some unknown origin “gliosis” spots on my brain i discovered on a MRI 10 years ago(around 6 of them possible vascular origin or MS). No new spots on MRI as it seems for now.

I have attached my EEG result from a month ago. My question is: can this electrical activity on the EEG be merely a result of anxiety and depression? I have had a rude doctor sent me to a psychiatrist. I don’t know if she even properly looked at my EEG. She said she was not interested in that.

I feel in my gut that depression is a result of the frustration of feeling sick for so long every day and getting no help. But I don’t even know if i should believe myself anymore at this point. I want a proper and well-informed diagnosis that is meant to really make me well again.

I have attached my EEG. One photo is after Hyperventilation and the other after Phonostimulation.

Those are the time frames where I got the most abnormal electrical activity from my understanding. Is this epilepsy or some kind of brain inflammation? Or can it be merely the result of depression? Is something like that even possible?

Thank you very very much for your support!!! I have some good news. I‘m very close to finding out what it is, I have some lab tests that are 3 fold increased. – some would be sad, but I‘m happy! I‘m so close to taking my life back!

The visit to the neurologist I highly respected(boy, I was so naive!) was a huge insuccess. She refused to see me and she let her intern consult me (she was only giving directions to this young resident doctor from the other room without f*cking talking to me personally- sorry for the language, but I simply have no other words for what happened). Not only did she refuse to see me, she increased my dose and told me to come back in 3 months!!! I insisted to talk to her, because there must be a misunderstanding, I told the intern I‘ll probably have to call the ambulance if I go home because I feel extremely sick, and I was told „okay, do it…“. What a joke! I recorded the conversation once I noticed something is not right( was the only thing in my power, I was simply powerless). I became increasingly aggitated while waiting the intern play „the telephone game“ between me and the doc in the other room. I felt as if I drank 50 coffees, it was torture, I couldn’t help but pacing around the room, it was awful (I think there is a good explanation why that happened, too). At that point, the doctor entered for 1 minute the room, told me I should visit a psychiatrist and left the f*cking room. I shortly asked her why I have painful cramps and spasms in my body if it‘s in my head, and she said „it‘s anxiety“.My muscles were basically all on fire, my whole body. As if psychiatry is the only speciality there is apart from neurology. I would ask her now, why are my lab tests through the roof if it‘s all in my head? (these positive tests were ordered afterwards by another doctor)
The papers I left the hospital with were signed in her name, and it was written „state at release from hospital: improved“. What a joke! The intern worked for her and she got the cash. Nice!

Luckily my mother insisted that i should see an endocrinologist. This endocrinologist asked me some personal questions (if I can have an orgasm- as if there was a link???) and if I have a boyfriend, and that i should have one. I told him I want to build my future before entering a relationship, and he still considered something is not right in my head. BUT at least he ordered the necessary tests. My Renin is 3-fold increased and my aldosterone 2-fold. My blood pressure is low (the record is 79/49 – yesterday). Which I guess screams Hypovolemia.. which could explain my agitation, my muscle cramps, spasms and the occasional paresthesias and muscle weakness, as well as the seizures and low blood pressure. I‘ll see a nephrologist in 2 weeks. I already missed my period for 2 weeks (I was very on time previously). I guess that‘s also „all in my head“. I lost my respect for the medical community, most of them have no regard for human life. I think I should have gone into Hypovolemic shock and lose my damn life to be believed.

Sorry for updating you so late, but it hurt me so badly feeling that people don’t believe me, and I didn‘t want to risk and get from someone the advice „maybe they are right, you should see a psychiatrist“ while I am literally feeling that I‘m dying. Some well-meaning relatives and acquaintances did that. (Well.. after all this *of course* I‘ll need a psychiatrist and a psychologist, it was a very traumatic experience- to feel that your body is shutting down and no one believes you)

Now that I‘m so close to an end I can speak about it. Maybe it helps someone else who’s going though the same thing.

@johnbishop Thank you so much for the TED Talk, I can’t wait to see it ! It feels good to know you are not alone going through that.

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Hello @flowerbloom,

I'm glad for the update and the fact that you saw an endocrinologist. It sounds as if that was a good appointment. I see that you are going to see a nephrologist next.

Will this doctor be looking for a reason for the low blood pressure?

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The endocrinologist recommended a nephrologic consultation due to my very high renin. I guess the nephrologist will hopefully try to find out what triggered these lab results and for sure what did not (high renin can sometimes be due to a benign tumor in the kidney). Usually high renin is associated with HIGH blood pressure, not low blood pressure. I guess my body is trying to overcompensate for something. At my first emergency admission when this all started, my Serum Sodium was below the normal range with a few points. Now my sodium is still a bit low, but normal. But I mean if the blood volume is low, it means Sodium is still low, right? It‘s just that the small amount of blood is concentrated enough with sodium so that it‘s still under the normal range. I guess what should also make perfect sense is to measure the amount of sodium that is excreted in my urine, to see if my kidneys are able to keep enough of it in my body. For the following 2 weeks, I‘ll try to keep my sodium intake high. (I‘m drinking up to 3-4liters of water a day because of increased thirst, if I don‘t listen to my thirst, my BP lowers). I‘ll see if the muscle cramps go away or the plasma renin lowers. I had the bad habit of drinking lots of coffee while studying, i guess that might have contributed to my abrupt low sodium that morning (I had 2 cups at once). But I don’t drink any caffeine now. I haven’t in months. I don’t know why this problem keeps perpetuating. I hope I‘ll have the exact answers after this appointment and I‘m sure I’ll get them, if they order the necessary tests and don’t brush it under the rug once again. I mean, why not try to see if the patient is maybe dangerously sick first and just *after* you have exhausted all the tests, treat him as a psychiatric patient? It‘s beyond me!

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