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Physical symptoms with anxiety
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Physical symptoms with anxiety

About two months ago I experienced some weird facial tingling. I went to my student health center and they referred me to a neurologist, but I couldn't get into to see him for two weeks. During that time I became more and more anxious and scared about what this symptom could mean. It made me more conscious of other physical symptoms I had had, including an inflamed nerve in my left arm and leg from two years earlier that I believed had never gone away. I was convinced I had MS. When I finally saw the neurologist, he scheduled an MRI of the brain and that revealed nothing except sinusitis.

I thought I would feel relieved when the test came back negative but I couldn't let go of my anxiety. For the past three weeks I've experienced additional symptoms that change, including sore muscles, pulsing sensations in my lower left leg, a strange rippling sensation down my left leg when I walk, crawling sensations on my left thigh when I'm at rest, shaking, prickling, etc. These are all on my left side and none of them is constant or debilitating, but very present.

I know there are a million things this could signify. I became a vegetarian two months ago and I haven't eaten very much since all this started (what I do eat is probably not the best thing); I have trouble sleeping. I feel like I focus so much on the day's symptom that I bring it on myself. But, at this point, how do I know for sure that it's all in my mind and a result of stress or anxiety rather than being something serious? How can I tell when I need to see a doctor about my symptoms? This episode has been problematic not just because of the emotional distress, but because of the bills. I don't think I can afford to visit another doctor or have any more tests and yet I can't stop worrying. Do you have any suggestions?
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242532_tn?1269553979
You should go back to student health service and ask them about treatment resources for generalized anxiety, which may be what is happening.  It is very treatable.
22 Comments
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Avatar_n_tn
I have the same problem as you...only thing is im 39 and it started at age 21....

Never got over the ms thing..my tests were all normal...
There are so many strange symptoms that you can see just from reading these forums.....
any way, the crawling sensations you mentioned..is that under the skin?? does it feel like something is dripping under your skin????  
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Avatar_f_tn
Hello annie.  My symptoms are the same as yours.  Mine all started about 6 years ago.  My only child started preschool, he cried every time I took him, when i'd get home from taking him, I would get this strange bug crawling sensation on the left side of my face.  I didn't think to much about it.  Then 2 mmonths later at a new years eve party, I had a major anxiety attack.  It scared me so bad, I was so nauseated, that lasted about 3 months, I lost 25 pounds.  One day, while on the internet, I came across a website stating nausea was a sigh of ms.  Oh my gosh, I thought. My grandmother developed ms when she was 60 years old.  I was scared to death and quite honestly, I still am.  Then the strange feelings really intensified, here I am, a gluten for punishment.  Never had an MRI, to scared, my doctor said it's anxiety.  Told me ms causes stroke like symptoms, your fine, just don't think about it, yeah right, easy for him to say.  My crawling sensations are on my legs above my knees, but only when I sit down.  The face thing, that's usually as soon as I get up in the morning, it starts.
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Avatar_n_tn
Thanks so much to both of you for responding! My crawling sensation in my leg was strange. It was like a tiny string moving just below the skin of my thigh and would last about a second. This seemed to happen when I was still and all over my upper leg. Then for the past two days that's gone away and I have a prickling sensation on my thigh when I walk and if I shiver or think too much about it I feel a sensation like a drop of water traveling from my thigh down over my knee and down my shin. This doesn't really happen when I'm sitting down. I slept on a sofa-sleeper for two nights and I know my back is suffering because of it, but it seems more similar to another symptom in this on-going saga. In a few days it will be something else.

The negative MRI and the fact that I don't have any other major symptoms would suggest anxiety, but I can't stop thinking about this all the time! It's nice to know there are others in the same boat.
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Avatar_n_tn
P.S. And by that I meant I'm not the only one who thinks she's crazy. I certainly wouldn't wish this on anyone else! :)
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Avatar_n_tn
hi..annie..the symptoms you described about it feels like liquid dripping down your leg..thats what i have..but all over...its gotten worth with my anxiety..have you 2 ever found anyone who has found an answer to what that is???  Also, i have burning that feels like  a sunburn...
a woman emailed me from this forum..has many symptoms like me and just got an mri report taht said the white matter has high intensified areas...she thinks that means ms...maybe it does i dont know, but since she has symptoms like me, im thinking if she has it, i do too...does that sound normal to you?
ifelt better before that because the neru from webmd responded to me saying he thoguht my history did not suggest ms..and now im feeling bad again.
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Avatar_n_tn
My friend has MS.  You dont.  He has tons of pain.... you didnt describe any?
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Avatar_n_tn
There's no real pain involved, no. And I know that MS doesn't usually present itself with sensory symptoms only.
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Avatar_n_tn
Since you are a vegetarian, maybe you have a vitamin B-12 deficiency.  You could also be experiencing symptoms of stress.  A blood test is done for the B-12.  Good luck.
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Avatar_n_tn
Start taking B Vitamin Complex daily, you might be lacking. Any deficiencies in the B vitamines or in the absorption of B Vitamines can affect the nervouse system and cause similar symptopms.
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Avatar_n_tn
Wow!  I finally found other people that have the same problem as I do.  I have had the tingling and numbness in my legs, hands and face for about six months now.  It comes and goes.  Mostly when I sit.  My arms and hand fall asleep when I am talking on the phone and have my arm in the sam position for more than three or four minutes. I also feel like my lips, cheek, and tongue go numb also. I have been to all the doctors.  The more the symptoms come the more scared I get.  Last night my husband scared me while driving and I felt a shot of adrenaline shoot down my legs from my thighs down to my feet.  I didn't really give it a second thought until I got out of the car about  40 minutes down the road.  When I got out I felt like my legs were very week, like I had a stroke or something.  I was so scared I could not enjoy my dinner.  We went home early and I started to relax and the symptoms slowly went away after three or four hours.  I think that was an anxiety attack. As I am typing this I wonder if I am going crazy.... : (   The neurologist did some nerve tests and did find some slow responses from the nerves in my arms and legs mostly towards my fingers and toes.  He is wanting me to take some tests that are not covered by my insurance to see if i have nuropathy.    I also worried about the MS.  The MRI showed nothing, praise God!  The next thing they want to do is a lumbar puncture.  They want to extract the spinal fluid to see if they can see any inflammation.  I have made the appointment and cancelled twice. I am not sure if this is just anxiety attacks and I will be putting myself through a test that is not really necessary.  The lumbar puncture requires that you lay flat for 24 hours after the test.  The complications of the test are that you could have sever vomiting if you don't stay flat for 24 hours.  Being an anxious person the test thing is a bit overwhelming. The neurologist sent me to a psychologist.  I have been seeing him for about a month.  He has given me some relaxation technics that have been helping when I do them as instructed.  He wants me to take fifteen minutes a day and do a static progression muscle relaxation exercise.  It does take the tingling away, although the numbness does not go away.The psychologist seems to be helping, although in the back of my mind I wonder if there isn't something more going on.  I also feel better knowing that I am not alone with these symptoms.  I feel like it is putting stress on my family because I am always sort of bothered by the tingling.  If anyone has any answers please let me know.



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Avatar_n_tn
Hello All,
my sister is going through similar stuff as you all right now and i have found a new hope and thats the reason i am posting this. Please look into amino acid therapy, go to your book store, get this book by Julia Ross called "mood cure". There are natural ways of dealing with anxiety and depression and thats through 5-HTP and amino acids and without any side effects.
Also, read this articles,
http://www.naturalhealthweb.com/articles/Nelson4.html
http://www.fibromyalgiacfsstore.com/healthnews305.html

good luck to you all. Please do not stop your medicines cold turkey because you will go through hell. The key is to start amino acid therapy and then slowly wean off the prescription medicine. Amino acids r available in nutrition food stores and GNCs
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Avatar_n_tn
hI TO ALL, HERES MY SYMPTOMS, FOR THE PAST 15 YEARS OR LONGER i HAVE HAD EPISODES OF WEIRD SENSATIONS IN MY HEAD, HISSING IN MY EARS,BLURRED VISION, NUMBNESS DOWN MY THROAT, EXTREME ITCHING UNDER MY JAW WITH NO RASH FOR NO APPARENT REASON,LASTED FOR ABOUT A MONTH,I GET A FEELING LIKE SOMETHING IS SHORT CIRCUITING IN MY BRAIN,BAD HEADACHES, BONE AND JOINT PAIN, MUSCLE TENDERNESS AS IF i HAD A VIGORUS WORKOUT USUALLY I FEEL IT IN MY BUT AND MY UPPER ARMS, HAND ARM AND LEG TINGLING, NUMBNESS, A WEIRD WARM SLIGHT VIBRATION ACROSS MY BACK THAT WOULD COME EVERY FEW SECONDS AND LASTED ABOUT A MONTH,INTERNAL VAGINAL NUMBNESS, CONSTIPATION FOR LONG PERIONDS OF TIME, ECECTRICAL ZAPS ALONG MY SPINE BUT ONLY WHERE MY BRA HOOKS WERE,I GET CREEPY FEELINGS IN MY LEGS LIKE THEY ARE WOBBLY AND DO NOT WANT TO SUPPORT ME, I GET FLUTTERS UNDER MY SKIN, MY LIST SOUNDS WEIRD i KNOW BUT i GET THESE THINGS IS FLAIR UPS MANY TIMES A YEAR, I DO NOT GET ALL THEM AT ONCE AND THEY LAST ANY WHERE FROM A FEW DAYS TO WEEKS TO MONTHS, SO HARD TO PREDICT. i ALSO GET BAD PAIN IN MY FEET THAT MAKES IT DIFFICULT TO WALK AT TIMES BUT THANK GOD IT ALWAYS GOES AWAY, ANYWAYS FOR ALL THESE YEARS I HAVE BEEN TO DR TO DR AND HAD EVERY TEST KNOWN FOR BLOOD WORK, CT SCAN, BONE SCAN THAT SHOWED SOME ACTIVITY BUT THE DR DIDNT KNOW WHAT IT WAS !, XRAYS, I HAD 2 NORMAL MRI THEN THIS PAST SEPT I STARTED HAVING HORRIBLE HEADACHES WHICH SO I WENT TO THE DR AGAIN AND GOT ANOTHER MRI WHICH SHOWED A FEW SPOTS, THEY SAID IT WAS DUE TO MY HEADACHES AND SENT ME HOME SAYING I WAS NORMAL, WELL ANYWAYS BEFORE THE HEADACHES I LEARNED TO DEAL WITH ALL MY WEIRD SYMPTOMS SINCE NO ONE COULD FIND ANYTHING WRONG BUT ALWAYS IN THE BACK OF MY MIND I THOUGHT IT WAS MS, AFTER I FOUND OUT ABOUT THE SPOTS ON MY LAST MRI I STARTED DOING MORE RESEARCH AND FOUND A SIGHT THAT LISTED EVERYONE OF MY SYMPTOMS EVEN THE ONES YOU THINK WOULD NOT BE SERIOUS SUCH AS CONSTIPATION AND HEADACHES AS BEIND SIGNS OF MS, THE DISEASE IS SO UNPREDICRTABLE, I DO NOT WANT TO HAVE MS BUT I BELIEVE I DO, I AM GETTEING A SPINAL TAP ON MONDAY, THERE CERTAINLY HAS TO BE A REASON FOR MY LONG HISTORY OF SYMPTOMS AND YES I DO HAVE SOME ANXIETY BUT I DID NOT HAVE ANY ANXIETY UNTILL I FIRST HAD ALL THE OTHER SYMPTOMS FOR SO LONG THEN THE ANXIETY CAME AND IT DID MAKE THEM WORSE, BUT IT IS SAD THAT ONCE THEY LABLE YOU WITH ANXIETY YOU DO NOT GET THE ATTENTION FROM A DR THAT YOU DESERVE. IT TOOK ME 15 YEARS TO FINALLY FIND A DR WHO FEEL I MAY HAVE MS AND IS WILLING TO LISTEN TO ME!
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Avatar_n_tn
well i had my spinal now waiting for the results, anyone who ever has to get a lumbar puncture i am living proof that there is no pain involved, even the needles they used to numb my back were almost painless, i would get another one without having any fears.
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi All,

I too am experiencing some symptoms that are really starting to scare me.

About a month ago a significant region of my left thigh has lost sensation and hasn't come back since.  My cousin has MS and is in very bad shape, this has scared the hell out of me.  I've been the doctor and they told me to come back  a month later.  I did so the other day although since noticing the leg thing I'm know getting pins and needle like sensations in my feet and hands.  Is it possible for these symptoms to be generatede purely out of anxiety?  They feel so real.  

I had blood tests this morning to check for Diabetes and Vitamin B12 deficiency.  I want the MRI scan to rule MS out, I understand this is a long wait and even after the scan you still don't know for sure.  I'm real scared at the moment, scared of the Vit B12 results coming back normal, scared of what the MRI scan shows and scared of the fact even if it shows no sign of MS, I 'll be totally paraniod after this for years to come, experiencing symptoms brought on by anxiety that never disappear.  I'm 30 and have a 10 month old daughter with my Wife.  This is putting a very dark cloud over everything.

I don't know what to do with all this
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Avatar_n_tn
I am just curious.  Are any of you using artificial sugar,e.g.,Diet Coke or other aspartame continaing products?  I had similar symtoms (symptoms) back when I was dieting and using diet cola drinks, had MRI that was clear,no problems, quit using aspartame containing products, problems went away.

It is amazing how some common products can produce such wild side effects.  I have not had any problems with sucralose (Splenda), but I won't hold my breath.
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Avatar_n_tn
Thank you for that information-I have had many of these symptoms for the past year.   I am having a lot more aspartame and I truly hope this is the culprit. I am stopping the use of sweet and low immediatley-Does anyone else here use these products?
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Avatar_n_tn
Wow I am perplexed!!!!!!!!! I just can't believe this website exits I have soooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo many similarities wtih you all!!!!!!!!!!!! if anything it so helps minimize the fear of feeling like "I am alone" A TON AND TON of thanks to all of you for your time and understanding!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Purple ones
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Avatar_n_tn
I kow a lot of this tickling feeling as if something is crawling on you can be a symptom of vitamin deficiency  so try using a sublingual b-12  and add a B-150 daily available at Walmart no script nessary.
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Avatar_n_tn
Hello, I am having the same problem with the crawling in the legs, it feels like a blood rush or something, yet I mostly feel it in my shin area and sometimes in other parts of my body. I have felt it before but never really noticed it until this morning. This feeling has last all day and night up until now, its 5:09 and I am still feeling it and I can't sleep with the thought of something moving in my body. I am so afraid that I don't know what to do...if I go to the doctor, they won't believe me. Pls someone tell me something on what to do, I am having a nervouse break down, I won't sleep with this moving that I am feeling....
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Avatar_n_tn
I too have severe anxiety which was/is still ever so slighty causing first numbness in the thumb and right arm. Then, numbness on the right side of the face, numbness and tingling on the lips and tongue, and headache only on the right side. I had an mri and ct scan, blood test, ekg,etc. Along with all of this, I was so weak and sick from throwing up yesterday that I had to crawl around my house to get to my phone to call my husband for help, and I am a stay at home mom of a 10 month old. I started taking Rescue Remedy yesterday by Bach's, and it has helped me throughout the entire day. In fact, writing this is making my face tingling for the first time in the whole day and it was going on for 5 months before the ER told me yesterday that I am all healthy. So, I am about to take my Rescue Remedy and go to bed. This is a terrible thing to deal with, but I am confident that it is temporary. My husband had panic attacks too, for about 2 years.
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Avatar_n_tn
I just want to let everyone know my situation because I truly believe my story can help may of you suffering from my situation.  On May 4, 2006, I started having needle like sensations, first in my legs, then arms and then all over my body.  I got reall scared and immediately went the neuro who did every test immaginable on my and everything came back normal. I was freaking out because i was convinced there was something wrong with me.  Then my mom took me to a neuro muscular doctor and he diagnosed me with myofascial pain. ( http://www.sover.net/~devstar/myopain.htm ) It is stress - it causes trigger points in the muscles which affects the nerves and there is a pinching - like sensation when the skin gets caught on the points.  At first i didn't believe it, but i started going to session and getting deep deep tissue massage and everyday I am getting better.  Please research this and see if your symptoms are similar, because this thing is totally correctable and I know i just felt much better knowing there was some type of relief.  

good luck!
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