Excuse me, but I think I have a brain tumor
Last updated: November 2014
A headache. A seemingly benign symptom of life. I had one for 3 months that never went away. While suffering with that, I noticed dizziness. Then came the lack of ability to walk a straight line. I couldn't stand without holding something for balance.
When I finally went to the ER, I point blank told the doctor, "I need a CAT scan, I'm pretty sure I have a brain tumor." I've been a critical care nurse for 23 years, so the doctor obliged. She came back and said, my CAT scan did not show a brain tumor, but rather looked just like MS. That was astounding to me. Really? My scan must look terrible if MS showed up on it.
Turns out, the next day I had a MRI. I was diagnosed with Tumefactive Multiple Sclerosis. It's a very rare type of MS, characterized by "tumor-like" lesions that measure 2-3 CM, not mm. That explained the headaches which steroids relieved, but didn't explain how this happened.
It's now 3 months after my diagnoses. My latest MRI showed small hemorrhages in my lesions. While my symptoms have simmered somewhat, I'm realizing what MS has given me.
In time, I will come to realize my fate and figure out how I was so lucky to be in a group of <1% of everyone who has MS in the world.
There is little to no real research on Tumefactive MS, therefore I care must be taken aggressively as these lesions are large and affect more damage.
So now I adapt to the new me. My neurologist says it is very likely it will take a year to recover and even get to remission....
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