This is my first time posting here. I am a 48-year-old male, 6'3" 200 pounds in average health. For years now I have had occasional numbness and feeling strange on the right side of my body--face, arms, legs. It comes and goes, maybe every few days. I am also noticing a tremor in my right hand.
I know I need to see a neurologist. Any suggestions as to what this might be?
Thanks for using the forum. I am happy to address your questions, and my answer will be based on the information you provided here. Please make sure you recognize that this forum is for educational purposes only, and it does not substitute for a formal office visit with your doctor.
Without the ability to examine you and obtain a history, I can not tell you what the exact cause of your symptoms is. However I will try to provide you with some useful information.
One-sided numbness of the body is most commonly due to a problem in the brain (as opposed to other areas of the central nervous system such as the spinal cord or peripheral nerves). Many possibilities exist, and depend somewhat on your age, your risk factors, and the nature of your symptoms (whether or not the numbness started suddenly or gradually, whether it is a complete loss of sensation or a tingling, whether it is an objective finding on examination or it is only a feeling that you have etc)
The most concerning cause of numbness on one side of the body is a stroke. Please understand I am not trying to imply you have a stroke, but if your symptoms intermittently come and go (with resolution in between) this would unlikely to be a stroke, but could be a TIA, or transient ischemic attack, due to reduction of flow in a specific vessel in the brain.Strokes and TIAs occur predominantly in people with risk factors: smokers, high cholesterol, diabetics, hypertensives, and people over the age of 55. However, they can occur in any age.
Seizures are another cause of intermittent one-sided body symptoms that resolve in between. Other potential causes of one-sided symptoms that would be more constant rather than intermittent include multiple sclerosis, a brain tumor, a vascular malformation, and others. Transient one-sided body numbness (lasting for example for minutes up to 30 minutes then resolving) could also be due to a migraine (the aura of migraine, in which case following the numbness, a headache occurs).
You would benefit from evaluation by a neurologist. Depending on your history and physical examination, he/she may choose to order an MRI of the brain, which would be able to assess for several of the disorders discussed above.
Thank you for this opportunity to answer your questions, I hope you find the information I have provided useful, good luck.
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