Thursday, May 13, 2010

Ambulatory EEG

Many people have been wondering why I had an Ambulatory EEG.

First, thanks for asking... I truly appreciate the concern.

Several years ago I started feeling these weird "head spells" -it used to be infrequent but over the past year and half they've increased to several times per week. Some days, they are several times a day.

These head spells are very hard to describe but the closest I can come to describing it is by saying that it's kind of like a momentary disconnect between my body and mind. As a side note, when I was a kid I used to have night terrors and the same recurring dream. The scariest part was that in the dream I felt a disconnect from myself. Like I wanted to get to my family but couldn't because I didn't have control over my own body. This brief head spell is a very small version of that feeling. Another quick description of these head spells is that it's kind of like that feeling you get when you stand up too quickly (except I DON'T blackout and it's not triggered by standing up too quick).

It can be a split second or several seconds. If I had one while talking to you face to face, you most likely wouldn't know it even happened to me. Every once in a while, if it's a "long" one, I find myself shaking my head quick to kind of "shake it off." This isn't something that interferes with my quality of life in the sense that I can drive, work, play, etc even if I am having a day with many head spells.

The reason I went to my doctor about them is to rule out anything serious. I had an MRI last year to rule out tumors, MRA's of my head and neck to rule out poor blood flow to my brain, an EEG (the regular kind) last year to rule out Epilepsy, and now this 48 hour, Ambulatory EEG to rule out another kind of epilepsy?? I guess haha.

The way this Ambulatory EEG worked was I had about 25 electrodes glued to my head and the wires were connected to a battery pack I wore around my waist. My head was all wrapped up in bandages and then this sock thing and then finally a hospital cap over the top of it all. The battery pack was the size of about 2 VHS tapes, but heavier. I had to push a button on the battery pack box whenever I had a "head spell" as well as keep a detailed diary of everything I did (watch tv, eat, bathroom, walk up the stairs, napped, etc). It was really uncomfortable. Especially because I sleep on my tummy and the pack was on my stomach (although I have been informed that being pregnant also hinders comfy sleeping for tummy sleepers).

I will get the results back in a few weeks. I am hoping it's normal (duh). My Neuro has a pretty good idea of what this problem is (I don't remember what he called it and would probably not even recognize it if someone said it). But it's nothing that a little mind retraining and a little bit of meds can't control. Yay.

So, "thanks" to everyone who asked what the test was for and how the test went. It means a lot to me!

Oh and these pics are for Erin, who personally requested to see them, a few times. haha.

This is the mess of wires and the battery pack I wore
(sorry the pic is kind of dark)

Wires glued to my head

(I am smiling b/c this was right before they came off! yay!)

And the bandages and sock thing on my head.

What I looked like with the hospital cap on.

This was the first day... hence the sad face.

The back of my head with wires poking out.