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Forum Name: Neurology Topics

Question: Vertigo,ataxic gait, sound is painful...just to start


 KonLight - Mon Apr 20, 2009 1:42 pm

My father, a 52 year old male, 6'4 and 280 lbs with a history of hypertension(since his 20's), high cholesterol, anxiety,depression, mild narcolepsy, RLS, positional sleep apnea, plagued by migraines for 35 yrs(seemed to be food triggered and stopped a year ago all of a sudden), folliculitis(has reoccurred every year) and gout. Hit by a car when 10yrs old, (unconscious for 3 days- '66), motor cycle accident in 2004(one and only time his BP was low, injured shoulder and hip) 3 hernias('72,'74, '76)and knee surgery in 2000
Family History-
All aunts,uncles,mother and grandfather(all on mother's side) all had either an aneurysm(aortic,abdominal,and brain) or an aortic dissection(yes i mean EVERY one of them(2 aunts, 3 uncles, mother,great uncle, grandfather)
Mother-died of brain cancer

He has the follwing symptoms:
-Ataxic Gait-progressively gotten MUCH worse over 9 months....now cant walk without help of a person or a wall for balance, looks like he's completely drunk when walking (when doctor was testing him, had him put his head back and my dad lost all balance control and his body fell backwards)
-When sitting, head and body seem to be in constant motion(ranges from non-existent to noticeable and occurs most days), only laying down seems to remedy this
-Vertigo which ranges from mild to extreme(triggered by auditory,visual, and physical stimuli)
-Nausea(occurs with the vertigo)
-Dry heaves when vertigo/nausea is severe (triggered by movement/activity/when riding in the car cant follow the scenery or gets VERY ill)
-Nystigmus
-Slurring speech(occurs intermittently)
-Mental confusion/cognitive issues-gotten worse over 9 months
-has a hard time finding words
- has a hard time following conversations and fast speech(must talk slowly for him)
-Has a much harder time following oral directions than he has in the past
-got lost when driving(took alot longer for him to realize where he was and what he was doing)-no longer drives
- lack concentration/things that requires mental processing are hard for him and make him sick(nauseous and malaise)-worse when the activity is more complicated
-Memory is much worse than in the past
-When watching tv, all of a sudden he couldn't understand what they were saying, he said it was all garbled and sounded like a foreign language,has occurred a few times
(my father is a highly intelligent man who NEVER EVER struggled with these things)
-1 episode of a visual hallucination(saw multi-colored lizards crawling on the walls out of the corner of both his eyes)-occurred in the last 2 weeks
-1 episode where he put on the deodorant he has used for over a decade and it smelled like rotten bananas to him(smelled fine to me)-occurred in the last two weeks
-Very minor shaking of the hands which is occurring almost on a daily basis now
-Sound is painful to him(first noticeable symptom and especially high pitched noises)
-Tinnitis in both ears( was just a keening now a keening and a roaring sound)
-Lacking/very weak reflexes in legs-first appt was weak, last one was lacking(they havent tested his arms so I can not comment on that)
-Writing and other fine motor activites are becoming more and more difficult
-Sunlight/bright lights make him sick and can trigger vertigo and nausea
-Trouble sleeping
-Fatigue
-HUGE increase in startle response
-Has NO headaches or pain
-No longer has a reaction to Xanax(took it to help him sleep the other night, took 0.5 mg and had NO effect at all. Before all this, 0.25 mg would knock him out and make him sound like he was HEAVILY drugged)

-Seen a ENT 3 times-thinks it is neurological
-Seen neurologist 3 times-blows him off
-Seen neurologist specializing in migraines 1 time( being treated for basilar migraines with wellbutrin and a calcium blocker-has showed NO improvement after 6 weeks and the doctor isnt addressing any other possibilities)-has appt end of May,soonest he could get in
-Has an appt in June with a vertigo specialist-soonest he could get in
-MRI a few months ago showed only small ischemic areas in brain including one small one on the cerebellum and 4-5 in the white matter (doctors ruled it meant nothing), Just had another one this morning after my father pushed the neurologist
-Acoustic reflex test-failed 3 out of 4
-Hot water/cold water test in ear-NO response at all, said it felt good
-Hearing test-normal, no hearing loss at all
-follow red light on wall test-couldnt complete, within seconds EXTREME nausea and vertigo set in, had the dry heaves
-Blood tests all came back normal
-Neuropsych evaluation
-Showed issue with working memory,attention, and a very slowed motor response when performing mental activities(like math)
-Showed he still performs well intellectual(general knowledge)-as I said before my father is HIGHLY intelligent,managed to work overtime(40+ hours) and go to the University of Chicago Business school for his MBA and graduated with honors-have definitely noticed some major changes that the doctors blow off because they never saw him before all this started
-Said the tests were consistent with a neurocognitive disorder and depressive disorder-neuropsychologist (neurologist said the tests mean nothing)
-MRA on cartoids showed the were clear
-ECG w/bubble-normal
-sleeping EEG-normal

Current Medications:
Lorazapem-0.5 mg 2x daily
Budeprion SR-150mg 2x daily
Verapamil-240mg ER 1 every morning
Aspirin-325mg 1 every day
Vitamin D-2000 I.U. 1 daily
Men's Multivitamin-1 daily
Niaspan-500mg ER 1 daily
Ondansentron-4 mg up to 3x daily
Ketoconazole-200mg 1 every day for two weeks(for folliculitis)

Doctor just discontinued:
Avalide-300mg/25mg 1 daily
Simvastatin-40mg 1 x daily

-BP, even on meds, is still not normal(its elevated but not dangerously high), doctors don't seem to think its an issue

*** If someone could please help, my father is only getting worse,I'm concerned at the lack of concern these doctors have/the way the don't see these symptoms as an BIG issue. The doctors seem to blow off his symptoms. He hasnt been able to work(he cant perform his job),drive, and progressively becoming less functional. Household things like washing dishes and doing laundry is becoming harder for him as it is making him sick/causing pain with the sounds. Any ideas or opinions would be great. Thank you for taking the time to read over this and comment on it.***
 KonLight - Sat Apr 25, 2009 12:58 pm

Got the results to his most recent MRI-Nothing has changed
 KonLight - Tue Apr 28, 2009 12:00 am

Also, he had another hallucination episode-creepy crawler things out of the corner of his eyes.....

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