In April of 2006, when I was 17 I was diagnosed with viral meningitis caused by the Herpes Zoster virus, this was the conclusion as I had both red and white blood cells in my spinal fluid and displayed the classic shingles rash on which ever dermatone runs from the left side of the spine, and wraps around the very last couple of ribs directly under the breast. While in the hospital, I was heavily dosed with both antibiotics (for the first few days until bacteria results came back as negative) and Valtrex (via I.V., as I couldn't keep down fluids in order to swallow a pill), I was tested for multiple immune-definciency viruses (all negative), and received a C.A.T. scan to ensure that I did not have ensephalytis. There are so many strange things with my case, as it is unusual for a young person with a very healthy immune system to develope Shingles, let alone to have it develope into meningitis, but also, while in the hospital my blood enzyme levels were extremely high, around 97 as I remember. A few days after being discharged from the hospital, my current doctor had my enzyme levels checked again, they had dropped to the mid-80s and thus he seemed satisfied I was recovering from what ever problem that was. A follow up appointment was never suggested and never made; this is a major problem with military health facilities, doctors come and go very rapidly, so it is hard to receive focused care. To the point...
Last January I was positive that I was 'coming down with' Shingles and possibly meningitis again, I had severe aches where the rash had been before, was vomitting, and had a minimal range of motion in my neck and back, I did not want to hear that I had Shingles or meningitis again, so I decided to wait 24 hrs to see what happened. The next day I regained most of the range of motion in my back and neck, however I was still in extreme pain in the area of the dermatone that had been afflicted. I went to the Naval clinic where a doctor told me that she felt that I had a muscle in my back that was as hard as a rock, perscribed me a muscle relaxer and said to come back if I developed a rash. Two weeks later, the pain finally subsided.
My current problem is that about two-two and a half weeks ago, I began getting very sharp pains in my left side of my back and chest, starting from directly over the apex of my heart, and streaking in small increments around to my upper back, and upper chest, originating from the location of the dermatone that had the original shingles. The pain is very sharp, like very abrubt tears in my tissue, at times it is intense but only for a split second then it is gone or it has moved. The pain came back spread out, and then over a few days proceeded to spread more to my left shoulder, my elbow and my wrist. At first I was terrified that something very wrong was going on with my cardiovascular system, and still ponder as to whether it is, however, the pain seems very much nerve related. I can feel it constantly in the nerve that rests behind my 'funny bone' as a dull 'pinched-nerve' sensation, and this nerve also gets the very sharp pains that have been affecting my chest and back. There have been days where I hardly feel the pain in my chest and back, and days where it is very bad. I saw a nurse practitioner at the Naval clinic recently, she feels as though I might be developing shingles again, and has perscribed Valtrex. I am nervous because the last time I went to the clinic in regards to shingles I was told I just had shingles, that it was normal not to be able to keep my eyes open even in dim rooms, and to have very sensitive hearing, and to loose some range of motion, only to be rushed to the emergency room for not even being able to stand or coherently speak a few hours later. My fear is that this could be something more, a complication of some kind, that is being over looked as it was last time.
I am sorry that this is a novel, I just feel that every and any aspect could contribute to any one who may know something about this.
Thank you for your patience in reading this.