Am interested in connecting with people who have this or are significant others of people who have this condition. (I'm in the latter group).
Interested in more discussions like this? Go to the Brain & Nervous System Support Group.
Suzanne, I also have stiff persons syndrome. I was just diagnosed last summer. I don't have it too bad as it just occasionally effects my left leg and mid-section to where I stiffen up. I am now taking medicine for that but I also tried IVIG and I don't think it helped. My biggest problem is I can't walk through parking lots, or even walk outside without some kind of assistance and I get kind of dizzy and scared. I also tend to have a problem when walking in front of other people unless I have my cane or walker with me. I didn't know if this disease tends to get worse or not. I do much better in the summer it seems than in the winter. I just can't even walk down the sidewalk on my own, however I can walk in my own home and my office without any assistance. Makes no sense to me. I am on an anti-anxiety drug but it doesn't seem to help this part of it. I guess I'm lucky as I don't have pain.
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You describe almost exactly my symptoms. I've had it for more than 20 years. Was finally given a tentative diagnosis in 2008 based on my symptoms and EMG. Basically, everything else was ruled out. I know people wonder why I use a walker when I generally walk pretty well, but if you take it away (unless I'm at home with a cane) I stiffen and cannot walk. I retired in 2008 and my symptoms are much better due to less stress but I'm afraid I will never get away from the walker.
<p>Dose any one have sps that can give some info</p>
I was diagnosed at the Mayo three years ago at 21, the truth is no one knows what causes it and every medication I've been prescribed doesn't have effects for the stiffness or pain except benzos and pain killers. The disease gives you severe anxiety and depression because no one understands the feeling except the people that have it, which are few. Tramadol and Valium/clonazapam have been the best medications for me.
Hi, @hammere4, and welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. I am glad you have joined us here.
Sounds like you've been through a challenging time trying to get the best medications for your condition.
I thought I'd ask if @nan45, @suzanneleafbrock, @pattygail, @lora, @shellwil, @twirlgirl101, and @judiff, who have discussed Stiff Person Syndrome previously, might have any thoughts to share, especially about the emotional effects of few people understanding this disease, due to its rarity?
I am sorry to hear about the anxiety and depression. Can you tell us more about what you've been experiencing with these?
Hi, I think my husband does not expect others to understand. He sometimes tries to explain it, but it seems people just don't get it or they forget. So for the most part, he doesn't expect people except his immediate family to truly understand. I think he chooses to just carry on as best he can and avoids much conversation about the disease or its impact, emotionally or physically. That probably doesn't help much, but that is what I have observed in his situation.
Hello @hammere4, welcome to Mayo Connect. Thank you for sharing your story. I know it must be hard for others without stiff person syndrome to understand how you feel. I'm sorry that anyone has to go through it especially at a your young age. I would keep asking questions and searching for a better treatment to help you. You are your best advocate and there are a lot of Connect members that hopefully will be able to help you by sharing their story and what has worked for them.
I did find a research article from the National Institutes of Health from December 2015 - "Recent Advances and Review on Treatment of Stiff Person Syndrome in Adults and Pediatric Patients": https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4727915/
If you haven't already had the chance, you might want to read through the postings of the other Connect members in this discussion.
Hoping for a pain free day for you.
I also do Nero Feedback and it helps with pain
Hi Nutmeg.. I have the same symptoms as you mentioned. I walk well at home but can't walk in open spaces. I can walk near a wall but panic if I don't think I can reach something stable. I walk fine if I hold onto to someone. How are you doing now? Did you continue the IVIG? Do you have type one diabetes? I do have hypothyroidism and Pernacious anemia. Thank you for posting.
Hi. My sister was just diagnosed with Generalized Dystonia and Stiff Person Syndrome. We live in Ormond Beach, Fl. Just north of Daytona. We are having a difficult time finding a doctor to treat her. The Mayo in Jacksonville does not have an opening for this diagnosis. She has gotten one set of Botox injections from a doctor at Shands but she has gotten worse. We are unsure of where to turn. She has been prescribed Baclofen and Valium as well. She was neg for GAD and for cancer. They are calling this idiopathic Stiff Man Syndrome. In other words they really do not know why she has this disease. But it seems a small subset of people with Stiff Man Syndrome have the idiopathic type. Does anyone know a doctor in the Central or Northern Florida area who treats this disease? I would love to hear from anyone. Because she is so dilbiltated she cannot use the computer at the moment and I am helping her with the search. Thank you, Marita Kelly
@maritakelly Hello Marita,
Welcome to Mayo Connect! Your sister is so fortunate to have you as her advocate. I found some information on the NORD website, here is the link, https://rarediseases.org/rare-diseases/stiff-person-syndrome/
A few other members have posted about this disorder as well. I will tag some of the members who have mentioned this disorder and perhaps they will join in a conversation with you @suzanneleafbrock @mcrchicago @judiff @nutmeg @fivets
If you are comfortable doing so, please tell us a bit about your sister's history with this disorder. For example, what type of specialist diagnosed this and what type of tests did she have?
We look forward to supporting you and your sister.
Thank you for getting back to me. My sister was originally diagnosed with ALS in 2000 at the University of Pa. Hospital. She was later, 2010 taken out of the ALS diagnosis but still no diagnosis for what was wrong. She was finally diagnosed by Dr. Ogue, neurologist, at Shands Jacksonville with Stiff Man Syndrome and Dystonia. She brought her old EMG from 2010 and was diagnosed on the spot with SPS at Shands in October 2017. She received 30 Botox injections via EMG for Dystonia symptoms over a month ago. This appears to have made her symptoms worse. She is in a tremendous amount of pain. She is taking Valium and Baclofen now as well. Although we are grateful to the neurologist who finally diagnosed her, we are looking for another specialized neurologist to treat her long term for both SPS. We know there is an excellent neurology clinic at the Mayo in Jacksonville but they are not taking any new patients as hey are at capacity with no waiting list either. We are not sure where to turn. We appreciate any help and information you can provide. Thank you, Marita Kelly
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