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Flu Shot revives Bells Palsy

I contracted Bells Palsy just as the fever broke from a near fatal 3 week long West Nile Virus infection in the early summer of 2004. I lost considerable hair, which came back gray/white, now have arthritis in many areas, my nails and cuticles grow in strange patterns, and I seem to be prone to fungal infections other than athletes foot. My energy levels are nothing like before the infection and I have trouble maintaining a normal weight.
The Bells has been largely in remission except when I'm very tired, until receiving a flu shot a couple weeks ago. It is now back, though not as bad as the initial infection. Immediately after receiving the flu shot, my ears were ringing for about 24 hours, and now my arthritis has flared up terribly. I'm 61 years old, am very physically active, eat well, take supplements,etc. I'm convinced the immediate onset of these symptoms is related to the flu shot. Anyone else out there who has had a similar experience, and more importantly, have you found anything to ameliorate the side effects? Thanks. Bob.
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See a sleep center. Recurrent "Bells Palsy," memory problems, insomnia symptoms, chronic pain, and twitchy feelings in muscles are actually very characteristic of narcolepsy with cataplexy. In fact, often times, it's not "Bells Palsy," but cataplexy. Viruses and some vaccines (namely the H1N1) can actually precipitate this, but it can happen seemingly in random fashion, too.

Common misdiagnoses are depression, epilepsy, and migraines.

It doesn't look the way you think it looks. I struggled for years to find an answer, and was misdiagnosed several times. I had it with just sleepiness during the day and what looked like insomnia at night for probably about 15-20 years before I ended up with more serious symptoms of narcolepsy that actually included cataplexy (random muscle weakness that can either be isolated, or widespread). Onset is typically in teenage or early adult years but it can come later, and earlier, too.

The cataplexy manifested first in my face, as what looked like episodes of Bells Palsy that came and went when I was tired, stressed, or even when I was happy and smiling.  But when I paid closer attention I realized I got weakness and twitching (not uncommon) in my other muscles sometimes too, though I chalked it up to clumsiness until I paid attention. I also had issues with my vision randomly and sleepiness.

I went undiagnosed for about 15-20 years, until I finally saw a sleep specialist and she nailed the diagnosis right away. The vast majority of doctors have absolutely no idea what it is or what it looks like, and no routine lab tests, MRI, CT scan, x-ray or anything of that nature will detect it. 75% of people with narcolepsy never get diagnosed in their lifetime.

I was tested for epilepsy, migraines, MS, all kinds of things. But nope, it turned out to be narcolepsy!!

Get seen by a sleep center!
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Bell is caused by a virus - as close as they can tell but it also only lasts a few days.  I believe the two events to be unrelated or else everyone with bells would be immunized for the flu as a cure.
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