Balance Issues When Outside

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I am 56.  After never having any health problems, three years ago I had four months of vertigo.  Was diagnosed with RA.  Over the last three years have had muscle weakness and the usual RA stuff. But my balance has gotten worse and worse and last year I fell problem 8 times.  Have been to the balance doctor, neurologist, ENT, acupuncturist, chiropractor, spine specialist, eye doctor.  I was on heavy medication for the RA and weaned off of that as I felt much weaker taking it.  Have given up dairy and caffeine and lost 35 pounds.  Here is my issue, I have kind of been able to cope with the dizziness, it's better if I am at home or inside my office.  If I go to a big area like a grocery store that gives me sensory overload, but I work around that too. I had gotten to where I had to use a cane if I was walking outside then about a month and a half ago I could no longer walk outside without someone to help me.  I don't need a lot of help, just need to be able to touch something, an arm or a railing.  If I park close to a buggy I'm good to go.  If I am 10 feet from a door and there is no buggy I have go use a walker.  It's the craziest thing!  I have never been prone to anxiety but the way I have to push through on some things is making me wonder.  Anybody experience something similar.

 

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11 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi Kathy,

    I suffer very similar symptoms in that I am fairly OK inside the house but when outside in wide spaces I am very unsteady on my feet and need to walk with a stick to just touch the ground. I find walking on narrow paths very challenging, and walking on uneaven ground or in the dark impossible. i have seen a neuro-otologist who has diagnosed vestibular hypofunction. I have improved slightly over time, but this has been down to bulding of confidence more that anything, there was a point when I could not leave the front door unaided. The support of a cognitive behavioural therapist who has helped deal with my anxiety. I have found using a long hiking stick, and wearing thin soled shoes that I can feel the ground helpful. I do hope your situation improves. Jan.

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    • Posted

      Jan that is it!  almost exactly!  Narrow paths and uneven ground and in the dark are the worst.  I am almost in tears as I type this - I really have been searching so long for someone that had experienced anything similar.  I did buy a walking stick that seems to help and I do better when I have on no shoes.  I thought maybe I had neuropathy since I needed to feel the ground but they ruled that out.  I will look for thin soled shoes.  Thank you so much for responding!!!!!!!!
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  • Posted

    Hi Kathie. I know it feels like you are the only one in the world with this and it is good to share with others in the same position and with those who completely understand. I also have oscilopsia which is a visual disturbance where everything is bobbing up and down, but that has improved a little. Tiredness always makes things worse as does stress, Christmas has been a challenge.

    Please feel free to private message me if you would like. Jan.

     

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    • Posted

      Thanks Jan.  I appreciate your encouragement.  I am sure learning a lot about other things while in this forum.  Have never heard of oscilopsia.  I'm glad the holidays are almost over.  Tiredness and rain are my two worst things.  Sounds like yours too.
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    • Posted

      Jan since you mentioned visual disturbance - do you have any particular problems when it rains or when you have to walk across something wet?  It really messes me up.
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  • Posted

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fsD3RDUqgJU

    Hi Kathie not sure this link above will work but this is exactly what I see.

    I find walking in the rain difficult as the rain coming down adds to the "confusion" of what I see. I have to feel confident in where Im walking so needs to be as flat as possible, also I need to wear sunglasses in bright sunlight, and impossible walking in the dark. Jan.

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    • Posted

      Wow! That video made me dizzy to watch.  This bouncing is not one of my problems and now that I have seen what you go through I feel even worse for you.  Do you have this all of the time?  I hope not.  But your comments about the rain are right on point.  While looking at your video I did watch a few others by someone named Ed that were on the side and talked about Meniere's disease.  I do not have that but a lot of the symptoms were the same so thank you for getting me over to that set of videos!
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  • Posted

    Hi Kathie,

    I replied to your post but has been sent for moderation as I included a link showing what you what II see. I will check tomorrow to see if the post has been sent OK. Jan.

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