Episodes of swaying sensation+neck pain_head throb+swollen glands, brain ALL LEFT SIDE ONLY.

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I hope someone here can look over everything below and point me in the right direction??

Quick background 47 yr old male,- No health problems at all before this. Always had normal annual checkups/bloodwork.

It started a 2-3 months ago with fatigue and some brain fog that I dismissed as lack of good quality sleep.or maybe cold or flu. I thought it would just go away itself which has always been the case in the past.

Then 1 month ago I ended up going to ER because along with fatigue, dizzy(felt like I rocking on boat sensation), left side of face felt numb(not pinns+needles but felt like it was alot less sensitive than rt side and had the sensation like it was swollen but it was not swollen). ER checked for stroke even though there was no drooping mouth or eyelids. Blood,urine, CT normal.

Followed up with my doc next day, more blood work including checking thyroid Came back normal. referred to neuologist.

Neuro ordered MRI of Brain, heart monitor for 2 weeks and 24 hr EEG.

MRI came back normal with no indication of MS according to my doc.I'm waiting on other results.

Over past month I have have these episodes around every other day. that would last about an hour. It almost feels like I am intoxicated or someone just put me in a "wrestling sleeper hold" and after an hour or 2 it passes and  I feel hungover and exhausted and just sleep. I can tell its coming  becasue left side of neck(area of carotid artery) starts to pulse/throb followed  pain at back of skull/base of neck.

a few weeks back, 30 minutes after MRI, parotid gland left side swolled up, lasted for an hour, drained which tasted disgusting and was sore. Since then I have notice swolen lump at side of neck where cartid artery is. Everything is on left side only.

Ultrasound of neck was just done with following results -

Two benign appearing Lymph nodes(14x6x10mm and 8x4x10mm at level 2/3) Nomal flow is noted in its fatty hilum-no sonographic findings are noted to account for patients symptoms.

based on everything so far, Doc or NP  has no idea what is going on. He suggested I see Infectious disease specialist and continue to  followup with neuro. Both of which take weks to get into and Iv'e been  out of work for over a month so far. Everything has been only on left side including sore throat, occasional canker sore near left tonsil that comes a goes.left tonsil swells up a litte with white junk that comes off it sometimes.

Ibuprofen or excedrin seem to settle it down if I catch it early enough. If I don't, then I end up laying down and can feel my entire left side of neck and hear throb...not as in pain..but like my heart relocated to my left side of neck!

Infection? Vrus? Vascular problem? Doctors so far don't seem to have any idea. If there something I can suggest to them???? What type of specialist do I try next?

I'm getting to the point of just asking to go back to work this way and wait for it to either get better or worse.

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4 Replies

  • Posted

    I forgot to mention I was alos tested for Mono. test showed I had it in past but not now.... whatever that means!
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  • Posted

    So far, it does not convicingly sound neurological.  The left facial numbness is most likely caused by involvement of the facial nerve as it passes through the parotid gland, which you said later swelled.  Feeling like being in a boat is not vertigo, and therefore probably not vestibular/brainstem/nervous system.

    It all sounds immune mediated.  I would go to infection specialist rather than neurologist at this stage.  The latter speciality is less likely the one you should be seeing as a priority.

    Eleftherios S. Papathanasiou, PhD, FEAN

    Clinical Neurophysiologist

    Fellow of the European Academy of Neurology

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    • Posted

      Thank you for the reply. I finally am getting into a an infectious disease doctor in two days.

      One symptom I forgot to mention in my post was  a dull ache pain that I had at base of skull, left side, occipital area that I have always had for years. SInce I had these other symptoms, this pain has been constant,   Over the past week this  pain  has gotten alot worse. I did get some relief from ibuprofin and also Tylenol Sinus medicine. I have had minor nasal sinus issues in the past during this time of year becasue of minor seasonal allergies which Ive always treated natually. This week my allergies acted up again so I took the OTC sinus med but the pain in that occipital area was really bad, the worst I ever felt.

      After  doing a quick search, I stumbled upon somethng called Sphenoid Sinusitis which presented very similar symptoms to what I have. Have you ever heard of this? Is it possible  that my problem stems from the  left side sphenoid sinus? If so, what type of doctor  could diagnosis this?


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  • Posted

    Hi, I had kind of the same problems ,just not the numbness I'm the face. I did all kind of tests and doctors but everything is fine ... then I visited a chiropractor and I have problems with my neck . It's pinched nerv along with silent migraine and anxiety with panic attacks and all this make a very unpleasant experience. It's just bad combination. After the chiropractor therapy is felt well but money stopped me to do it more often. Then I discovered that I'm very light sensitive and I order a special glasses made for photophobia and migraine Axon Optics, they did wonders for me also taking a high doses of magnesium. Magnesium is good not just for the bones,but for the nervous system and overall digestive system. Helps with aggravated nerves,migraineso and panic attacks. I feel way better

    I will recommend to you to check your neck and change your diet. Start with easy exercise ,like walking and good vitamins ( my advice is take the vitamins separately not a multivitamin, because a lot of the vitamins cancel themselves and other has to be taken with fat,like vitamin D)

    That way you will clean your system ,boost your metabolism and immune system. With the exercisesame you will bring more oxygen to your brain and overall healthy heart and body.

    Good luck I hope everything goes well with you and you feeling better.

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