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Living with Multiple Sclerosis


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My experience and diagnosis

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Pictures taken a couple of years ago


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I started with problems when I Were just 14 years of age, it was never diagnosed as been ms but it was all to do with my spine and problems have persisted ever since.  I was kept off school for over six weeks at the time and struggled to move from the sofa, I stayed there day and night, the only time I moved was to go to the toilet, then I needed help to get there and back, luckily we lived in a single storey house (bungalow) which is the same as a ground floor flat.


From there on I had to just make the best of my life the best way I could, until about 1998 and my back started to feel numb, as though it had been frozen and never gained any warmth. It was very sore, and I couldnt bare anyone to scratch it or even touch it.  I went to see the doctor regularly, I was placed on pain killers and anti-inflammatory capsules to try and keep the pain at bay.


In 1999 the frozen feeling turned to complete numbness, I couldnt feel anything to do with my back, from then on the numbness just spread to my thighs and up past my hips and my stomach, to just beneath my breast bone. My left hand became swollen and unable to use, I was getting to what felt like electric shocks down from my neck to the base of my back, and then the shocks started to continue down my left leg to the extent where I felt as though I was going to have a fit of some kind. Then came a point where I had no feeling of temperature down the whole of my left hand side. Whenever I got into the bath, the water would be hot on the right and cold on the left. My husband called out the doctor one night as my leg was freezing, but I couldnt feel the fire right up against my foot.


The doctor diagnosed a trapped nerve in my foot, and prescribed me something to help me relax to go to sleep as this was about 5 in the morning and I hadnt even closed my eyes.


The following day I went to see my regular doctor. He asked me what had happened the night before, so I told him. It was then he decided that it was time I went to see a specialist in Neurology as soon as possible.


I got in to see a Neurologist within 1 week, he did the usual senses tests and asked the usual questions, with that, he said was I able to go into hospital for a few days to have some tests done, because something definitely wasnt right. As I remember this was on the Wednesday, and I had a phone call from the hospital to ask me if I could go into hospital on the Monday.  I didnt have anything else on my schedule, so it wasnt a problem.


It was after all of this that I found out I was already taking all of the medication for ms.


Whilst in hospital I had all of the tests done, MRI, Spinal Tap, and some other kind of test to do with the brain. I was in hospital for 1 week. I was convinced that I had ms by this point, but the doctors didnt confirm or tell me anything at this point.


I saw my Neurologist about 2 months later to give me the results of all of the tests and as I thought was to give me a diagnosis, how wrong was I? He said that everything showed up inflammation of the nervous system, if I didnt get any other type of ms symptoms then it would be just put down to a disease that made the nerves flare up, otherwise we were looking at ms.


Approximately 10 months later I got Optic Neuritis in my left eye (but I wasnt aware of what it was, or what had caused it) I left it for about 6 weeks, I was totally blind in the left eye, then I decided to go to the doctors to find out what it was, he looked in my eye and told me to go to the hospital straight away, there I saw my Neurologist, and ended up on steroids, for the second time. There they told me that I could probably take that as confirmation that I had ms, my next appointment with my Neurologist I got a definite diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis.


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