Straight from the doctor’s mouth.
For those keeping score, the last few weeks have been a bit of a drain on me.
Last week I spent more time in the hospital than ever before in my life, and it was after my second brainwave scan that the neurologist sent me the following (slightly edited) note;
I am surprised because I didn’t think this would be the diagnosis but am happy because it is very treatable.
The repeat EEG clearly shows seizure discharges. (2.5 to 3 Hz spike and wave discharges in a generalized distribution)
If you recall, I thought the clinical hx of a relatively prolonged feeling of being lightheaded with tunnel vision and sleepy was extremely atypical for a seizure disorder (it still is) but in your case I believe it is your seizure “aura” or “warning syndrome”.
The other thing that was unusual was that it seemed to be triggered by physical exertion which is also weird for epilepsy. However, it is not the actual muscular, cardiac exertion, it is the hyperventilation that is the trigger. Hyperventilation changes the pH in your system and that can be a trigger for seizures.
When you hyperventilated during the EEG test is when the mini seizure discharges really started to appear more frequently and last for a longer time. (You may not have necessarily felt them). So, you don’t need to continue the cardiac tests or keep the appointments.
I guess the bottomline is this means that breathing hard changes the pH in my system and can create a perfect storm in my system, potentially resulting in a seizure. Considering the fact that I’ve been engaged in activities, (the constant component of which is always cardiovascular exertion), since I could move my body, I reckon this might not be an issue I need to take too seriously.
He went on to say he’d like to put me on a specific kind of medication, the possible side effects of which range from dizziness, discombobulation, mouth sores, to death… This seems like a pretty legit trade-off.
While the miracles of modern medicine are many, and I certainly wouldn’t have this perspective on any of my situation without it, I don’t feel as though throwing pharmaceuticals at the issue is necessarily the best option.
So it’s with this, I hope to close the chapter on May of 2018.
While we’re on the topic of breathing hard, did yinzers catch the news that local Nor Calif honch, and former lurker of all things one speed, Yuri Hauswald nabbed second place in the 350 mile running of this year’s Dirty Kanza?;
Photo courtesy of Myke Hermsmeyer.
Photo courtesy of Vanessa Hauswald.
The way I hear it is it took him twenty-five hours and fifty-one minutes, which is about twenty hours and fourty-nine minutes more than I would want to do almost literally anything in the world.
Bless his ridiculously strong heart, and congratulations on a well deserved week on the sofa watching cartoons.
Or really, I suppose he’s earned picking whatever relaxing activity he wants.
Speaking of relaxing activities, here’s a thing I went way down the rabbit hole with this weekend. Folks might remember this post from last summer when I got the very fortunate oppritunity to skedaddle out to Colorado and spend a week with Joe and Laura from Soulrun.
Besides riding bikes, and playing with their dogs, it was during Joe’s birthday barbecue that his old college chum Corey pulled out a few RC rock crawlers for us to play with, and I very nearly lost my mind;
As a little boy (like many children do, I would suspect) I adored trucks. Especially the ones I saw in books about the Baja races, and monster trucks of every sort. As a matter of fact, there was a toy store at Southwest Plaza in Littleton that would play a Tamiya promo video featuring their RC Baja cars, and I would sit and watch it in loops. I could never afford one of my own, but watching the video filled my mind with visions of playing with one in local creeks, or building my own little tracks in the woods.
The point is, I’ve been thinking about those crawlers for a year, and it was on Friday when I decided that maybe I should finally maybe pick one up for myself. For the sake of full disclosure, when I moved to the house in which I currently reside, I sporadically played with the idea of building a little track in the yard for my all time favorite childhood toy;
-But I never got around to it.
I figured my own yard was a safe place, as grown men playing with trucks at the local playground I suspect is generally met with a fair amount of concern.
The more I thought about a crawler, the more I realized this checks the same box as building model cars did a few years ago. It’s meditative, it’s solitary, and it soothes that internal child, which for some reason, I can’t seem to shake.
In the here and now, this seems to be about the best possible medicine I could take for my old, and battered brain.
When I posted a mention about this on the Instantgrahams the other day, nerds came out of the woodwork. I’m still shopping around, and won’t make any snap decisions, but if you wanna ever come over, get high and play with trucks, have your mom call my mom and we’ll set something up.
Until then, take two of whatever, and ignore me in the morning.
I wanted a radio controlled Bigfoot so much when I was a kid. They were high-dollar fun, and I was operating with a low-dollar budget, though.
Why the hell don’t I have one now? Great, thanks for planting this seed in my head…
Hopefully you’re now on the path to getting your body sorted out. It always concerns me when the Docs want to give a pill that has side-effects that are scarier than what they’re meant to be treating.
I’ve read that these things are pretty amazing fun. https://www.rcsuperstore.com/Traxxas-BIGFOOT-Classic-2WD-RTR-RC-Monster-Truck-p/tra36034-1.htm
Great link, thanks. Lots of cool stuff that kid-me dreamed of. I guess adult-me likes it, too.
I had a 79 Bronco. I need this piece in my life in a very real way:
My son saved up for a year and bought the Stampede 4×4. It is awesome and fast but not a great crawler. The 4×4 is really fun in the woods. Now dad needs one!
Good for you for acknowledging your inner child (who, BTW, you needn’t shake)! You have definitely earned some play time. Go for it!
Hm… good and bad to know, right? I have a history of unprovoked idiosyncratic seizures in my family as well. My aunt seized while driving with high school friends and one died, another was permanently maimed (not to mention her injuries). My uncle seized while employed as a pilot for Delta. Neither ever had another seizure, though. So whenever I lose track of time, I wonder, have I seized?
I guess keeping your CO2 down would then be a helpful thing… maybe a good medicine would be to then also drop your intake of sugars and alcohol. Rather than taking that medicine?
Oh, and what about Erica M. here in this post? Let’s hear it for the LAYDEES!
I’ve got her covered on Wednesday. I never neglect my duty.
How long of a drive from San Diego?
if you remember the little Stomper 4x4s, single AA battery hand-sized trucks that could do some decent crawling over things, I’m here to report that if one runs over a long-haired cat and winds hair up into the axle so that your hell raiser is ready to kill anything within five feet, once you catch the cat the problem is resolved by taking out the battery and putting it in backwards and then turning the machine back on.
I’m bringing mine to Northstar/Interbike this year because reasons
It’s also great fun to stuff a crawler in a pack and go for a ride to a nice rocky part of a trail, set up camp and have at it.
“…if you wanna ever come over, get high and play with trucks, have your mom call my mom and we’ll set something up.” Awe. Some.