MS or Migraine - Should I get second opinion?

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    Hi!  I saw an MS specialist at the Cleveland Clinic on Monday and the guy blew me off.  I am very frustrated.  I am so sick of everyone blaming all of my neurological symptoms on my migraines.


    I used to just have the following symptoms when I had a migraine.  But now I am having them all the time.  These include:  numbness and tingling in hands, arms, and face, muscle pain and weakness, severe sensitivity to heat, sometimes trouble swallowing, of course headaches, tremors, sometimes not being able to walk straight, visual disturbances (different colored spots, blurred, double, visual snow, etc).  An MRI done in 4/08 to rule out MS showed white matter changes and a focal lesion in the right temporal lobe.  The report stated "these findings would not be inconsistent with the diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis."  Well, my neuro symptoms have gotten progressively worse as have my headaches.  So, I went to the MS specialist.  He said that my exam was "too normal."  He ran some blood tests which I haven't gotten the results for.  He wouldn't do another MRI.

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    I am very frustrated.  Should I get a second opinion or should I be satisfied when they tell me that my symptoms are from my migraines?  Thanks - Kayleen.





    Dear Kayleen;


    If you are uncertain about your diagnosis or lack of, it is NOT unreasonable to seek a second opinion. Another option at this point would be to see a Migraine specialist and see if he or she would attribute all of your symptoms to Migraine. And, of course, you could get a second opinion on the MS and still see a Migraine specialist for their opinion.


    What is your Migraine diagnosis? There is only one type of Migraine that causes true muscle weakness, and that's hemiplegic Migraine. You can read more about that in Hemiplegic Migraine - The Basics.


    Your body - your health. It does sound as if a second opinion is warranted. Please let us know how things turn out for you?


    Good luck,
    John Claude Krusz and Teri Robert


    To review other questions from our Ask the Clinician Column,
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    About Ask the Clinician:

    Dr. Krusz is a recognized expert in the fields of headache and Migraine treatment and pain treatment. Each week, he and Lead Expert Teri Robert, team up to answer your questions about headaches and Migraines. You can read more about Dr. Krusz or more about Teri Robert.


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    Last updated September 2, 2009.

Published On: September 02, 2009