Posted By CCF Neuro MD# on March 22, 1998 at 13:03:22:
In Reply to: Slurred Speech! No diagnosis! posted by Robert Striffler on March 21, 1998 at 23:26:39:
My mother has slurred speech that has progressed over the past 6 years. Has been to many doctors.The doctors have comfirmed paralisis of the palate,larnyx, and tongue. Was told Lou Gherig's, but after 6years that diagnosis has been disregarded. No other has been offered. She is having trouble swallowing and it's getting worse. Cat scans,mri, myesthenia, and dozens of other tests have been done. I haven't noticed any toxicology spinal taps or tests for spinal fluid disease. and I'm being told the strange metal dental artical that showed on the mri couldn't be the reason. What are my options? Chelation, Hyperbaric, Deficiencies? Please Help!
The condition you describe sounds like degeneration of nerve cells in the
brain stem which control the vagus and hypoglossal nerves , with possibly
some involvement of the cerebellum, this symptom complex is called bulbar palsy
and Lou Gherig's diseae is one of the commonest causes, the fact that it is so
isolated would at this stage would make that diagnosis very unlikely at
The tests done so far suggest that this is a degenerative condition, in other
words nerve cells are spontaneously dying for some unknown reason,
there are many diseases in this category Lou Gherigs, Parkinson's and
Alzheimer's being the best known. Unfortunately all of these diseases are
progressive and while treatment of the symptoms is possible in some
cases, medical science has not yet discovered a way to stop the underlying
In the absesce of treatment various therapies are always suggested, none
have been proven to be of any benefit, for instance chelation only works
if there is a documented excess of some mineral, hyperbaric oxygen has not
been proven to work in degenerative diseases, supplements should only be
given if a deficiency has been proven. (Taking acetylcholine to make
the brain " work better" is meaningless since there is no total body
defecit of acetylcholine in cases where this is a factor, the problem is
that the nerve cells delivering acetylcholine to tagerts in the brain have died).
Someone in your situation who is desperate help a loved one is often
a victim of very fraudulent (and expensive ) "therapies" and you should
evaluate any potential treatments very carefully before subjecting
your mother to unproven interventions.
The main focus of our approach in these cases is to be absolutely
sure that all possible potentiallt treatable causes are excluded,
I cannot comment on this without seeing all of her results but
would suggest that you obtain a second opinion and have all results
of lab tests, scans etc reviewed by an independent neurologist, ideally one
with expertise in the area of neurodegenerative disorders, in this way
you can at least be sure that all possibe avenues have been explore.
If you want a name of an expert in your area we would be happy to provide a name
in a city near you if necessary.
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