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MS Diagnosis at 50
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MS Diagnosis at 50

About a month ago, I woke up with a horrible headache, vertigo and double/blurred vision. I went to the doctor who said that it was an inner ear infection. A few days later, when my double/blurred vision and vertigo hadn't cleared, my GP sent me to an opthamologist. The opthamologist said he couldn't see anything out of the ordinary but sent me for an MRI. The MRI results came back with several lesions and with contrast, a few were new. The opthamologist sent me to a neurologist who sent me for blood work and a spinal tap after we reviewed my health history.

Yesterday I met with him again and he told me that based on my MRI and the results of the spinal tap (there were bands in the fluid), he could rule out everything but MS. He is very surprised that it took until I was 50 for the first real symptoms to show up.  He explained about all four different types of MS drugs but recommended Refib.

Does his diagnosis make sense or should I have some further testing done? My vision has returned to normal and I only have a little dizziness left.
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6 Comments Post a Comment
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195469_tn?1388326488
I am so glad you decided to join us. Welcome.  I am sorry that it is under these circumstances, but we are here to support you, every step of the way.

I am sorry to say, that your doctor's diagnosis does sound correct.  It doesn't mean a death sentence, Su.  It just means that there will now be struggles in your life.  But struggles you don't have to face alone.

Rebif is the strong version of Avonex.  It's a Interferon Beta 1A.  Just in a stronger dose.  I would read all you can about Rebif, so you are well educated.  The fact that your vision has returned to normal right now, means that you are in a remission.  These can happen without any medical intervention, but MS really never sleeps.  It is always active, whether you feel any "symptoms" or not.  So I highly suggest you take one of the drugs meant to help reduce the flair-ups or attacks of MS.

It sounds like you have a GREAT doctor who is on top of everything.  Thank God.  I am so glad, when so many of us are stuck with nit-wits....

We are here for you, Su.  If you have any questions or concerns, please drop us a post and we will get back to you as soon as we can.  This is a very fast moving forum, so hope you can keep up.  I have trouble keeping up with it from day to day.  You've come to the right place.

Again welcome.  You are NOT alone...

Heather
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Avatar_n_tn
Thanks so much for your warm welcome. I have to tell you that I'm actually relieved to have a diagnosis of something that is cronic (chronic) but treatable. Of all the things he could have found (cancer, brain tumor, etc), this seems to be the best of the worst.  It's all so odd because I feel fine - just a little dizzy which goes away when I take Dramamine (the Less Drowsy version). Other than that, I feel the same way I did on the day before my killer headache arrived.

My doctor is terrific. He is gruff with almost no bedside manner but you can tell that he is brillant. When he speaks, you can tell that neurology is his passion.

I guess being diagnosed late is a good thing. Being diagnosed in my 20's or 30's would have freaked me out. When you are 50, you are pretty prepared for your body to start wearing out a little bit. Heart disease? No, that part is good. Arthritis? No, the joints are holding up well. MS? Well, the brain has taken on a new challenge. I explain it to people as little twisties that are unravelling. The medicine helps slow down the rate. Plus, now I have an excuse to get more hours of sleep every night.

The idea of injectable drugs is a little daunting but my husband is an EMT so he is looking forward to chasing me around with a needle.  

I told my boss and coworkers this morning and I can tell that they are baffled by how calm I am about my diagnosis. I guess I should put a scarlett MS on my clothing and mope but that's just not me!

Thanks again for the nice welcome. I look forward to reading about everyone's experiences.

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230625_tn?1216764664
Welcome to the forum, and I too, am sorry for the Dx that brought you here.

You really have a wonderful attitude about this.  I could learn a lot from you!

I'm 45 and was hit upside the head with "possible MS" this year.  Still trying to deny it, but still looking for a definite Dx of SOMETHING!  Like you said, it could be worse.  I too think that being Dx'd later is better.  I can't imagine being Dx'd in my early years.  :(    

Not looking forward to injectible drugs either.  I so wish they would hurry up with the oral versions!!

I'm happy that you are feeling well and welcome again!

Take care!  Pat :)

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Avatar_n_tn
Welcome to our cyber family,

Your neuro is awesome,he done the test and properly diagnosed you with efficiency and describing your lesions as UBO's or telling you that lesions are a sign of older age.

I was Dx'd right before my 41st birthday,rebif was my gift.

Rebif is the stronger of the disease modifying meds.I self inject,the rebif comes with an auto injector and ya don't even see the needle,I however self inject.the rebif is injected right under the skin and common reactions are flu-like symptoms and site reactions.I do my shots tuesday thursday and sunday that way I have the weekend off .I do them right before bedtime and take tyelenol an hour before.

Ya don't even feel the injection they use a 29 gauge needle.

You have a very possitive attitude and thats whats needed to conquer the symptoms

T
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Avatar_n_tn
Thanks again for the welcomes. That's the great thing about the internet. One day you are all alone and next day you have a new group of "friends" that have a common bond.

Regarding positive attitude, the great German philosopher Friedrich Nietzche said "What does not destroy me, makes me stronger." When it comes to things like this, unfortunately no one asks our permission. It's not like any of us got an email from some higher power that read "oh by the way, if you aren't busy in October of 2007, would you mind getting diagnosed with MS?"  So, you take the cards that are dealt and just keep playing the hand.

When it comes to diseases, they have different scary priority levels in my mind. Diabetes would have been scarier than MS (I love food and I don't think I could adjust). Heart disease is way scarier and cancer is the scariest of all.

Thanks for the injection info, too. That part sounds like it's not a lot of fun but I'm sure I'll get used to it.

Susan
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi Susan,

Just wanted to say that my gram was diagnosed at age 60.  She lived until she was 79.  She never used a walker, scooter, or wheelchair. She passed away from complications after bypass surgery.  She did very well for her age, and her disability.  Take care, God will watch over you.
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