My Recent Relapse…
Editor’s Note: Everyone has their own unique journey with MS, and The National MS Society blog strives to amplify the diverse perspectives of people in the MS movement. While the content of this blog may be sensitive to some, the author is sharing his personal, authentic journey with MS.
I felt weak and sat down on the patio steps at family’s home in Spain. I laid back and suddenly, from the neck down, I went paralyzed. I couldn’t even lift my phone from pocket. I spent so much time screaming for help, as walls are high and this time of year, people are using AC so it’s harder to hear.
Eventually, a neighbor came to the rescue. But at this point, I had been out 5 hours in the direct sun! Next thing I know, the fire brigade came as first aid. Between the police packing a bag for me to take to the hospital and the neighbors and fire brigade feeding me my medication and water, I realized I was having a relapse and was dehydrated.
A pseudo-relapse is when there’s a worsening of neurologic symptoms that go away within a 24-hour period. It could be triggered by stress, exhaustion, exposure to heat or cold if you’re sensitive to it. It also can be caused by bladder or other infections.
Relapses in relapsing-remitting MS, which is what I have, are when there are new symptoms or worsening of old symptoms marked by lasting at least 24 hours. A relapse will be followed by a remission. During a relapse, symptoms get worse. During a remission, symptoms partly or completely go away.
Two weeks now after my probable relapse, both my legs feel like they’re full of concrete. Although I have experienced similar symptoms before, this time it’s definitely worse. However, after being hospitalized and given treatment, I am getting there. Although I fully understand this will take time to recover from, my speech has become slurred at times, and I’ve seen an increase of brain fog.
At beginning of this episode, I was paralyzed from neck down, I couldn’t even move my little finger to try and contact emergency services. My right leg was trapped underneath my left which has left a deep wound. Bruising to my body is starting to fade. My feet and ankles are still swollen, especially my left foot.
After 3 doses of steroids at the hospital, my mother had flown out spent next 7 days resting before flying home. Starting a 5-day course of oral steroids, MRI to be scheduled along with physio.
Still smiling and fighting on.
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