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Author Topic: Dumb question  (Read 2231 times)

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Offline maddalfred

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Dumb question
« on: January 08, 2009, 05:38:02 PM »
I wasn't sure where to ask this, hence it ends up here.

Maybe about a year before my diagnosis, I started to experience something I had never before. It is hard to describe, but here goes. The first time it happened it scared the hell out of me, but subsequent times I have blown it off fairly quickly and I bring it up now because it happened again last night.

I go to bed, on the edge of dozing off or already asleep when out of nowhere I get this two or three second "flash" like lightning going off in my brain. Whether almost asleep or already asleep it wakes me fully and of course I get an adrenalin rush from the suddenness of the "attack" (for want of a better term). The "shock" itself isn't really painfull, just startling and didn't happen on a regular basis, just from time to time. It isn't like when you are just dozing off and suddenly jerk awake. The "flashing" part is mainly what makes it different.

Does this sound familiar to anyone here? I have an appointment with my primary care doc tomorrow and wonder if I should mention it or not or if it is something common I have never heard of before. Please no snide remarks, I haven't been in a great place mentally for a while and I don't know anywhere else to ask this kinda thing. :(

<img src=http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj56/maddalfred1959/Me.jpg>

Offline mecch

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Re: Dumb question
« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2009, 05:47:07 PM »
dunno what it is, but i suggest you "mention" it to your doctor.  I mention all the weird stuff like that - that's their job to listen and dismiss or take seriously.
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline BT65

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Re: Dumb question
« Reply #2 on: January 08, 2009, 10:53:44 PM »
Hi Rex,

I would definitely mention it to your doctor.  It could be stress, whatever med you're on, but who knows.   That's what doctors are there for-to explain weird things that we have no explanation for. :)
I've never killed anyone, but I frequently get satisfaction reading the obituary notices.-Clarence Darrow

Condom and Lube Info http://www.aidsmap.com/Condoms/page/1044833/
Please check out our lessons on PEP and PrEP. http://www.poz.com/factsheets/fs_2014_09_prep.pdf


Offline lucas clay

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Re: Dumb question
« Reply #3 on: January 09, 2009, 06:41:31 AM »
Mr. Rex
I don't get "the flash "you get, but every night as i start to fade out to sleep i fade back in to awake. I just roll over and try again.
In the middle of the night my eyes just pop open, and i roll over and try again.
I think its the meds in my case, I just don't sleep very well any more.
I would run this by your doctor.
I hope it gets better for you bro


Offline jennynyc7

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Re: Dumb question
« Reply #4 on: January 09, 2009, 09:00:29 AM »

This sounds very familiar to something that happens to me from time to time. The only difference I see is that after it happens to me I realize it was set off by even the smallest noise. I think it is because I am almost asleep and the noise startles me, but I get the same "brain lightning thing". It reminds me of how when you are watching a movie and in the movie they do a flashback and the screen flashes and changes really quick with a bright light.  It is quite scary. I have never thought much about it as I figure it just has something to do with sleep/brain chemistry/nerves etc. I have been on an anti-depressant for 10+ yrs so not sure if that has anything to do with it. I have never mentioned it to my Dr. but if it worries you, by all means, bring it up.

1/3/08-ARS began
Initial Vl=99000
2/14/08-began Truvada/Reyataz/Norvir
3/01/08=Swapped Reyataz for Viramune
5/1/08:     vl= undetectable
10/24/08:  vl=undetectable
                cd4=1172 (55%)

12/4/08:    vl=254 (hopefully just a small blip)

Offline Assurbanipal

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Re: Dumb question
« Reply #5 on: January 09, 2009, 11:44:07 AM »

Definitely mention it to your doctor. 

You say it is in the brain -- I had what might have been a similar set of flashes in the eye but I wasn't sure if it was the eye or the brain at first because it happened even when the eye was closed.  Started with just one or two weeks apart, but eventually like a little two hour lightening storm.

Turned out to be a symptom of the vitreous humour separating from the retina.  Apparently the risk of the vitreum drying up and retracting from the retina increases with age.  Note its only dangerous if the retina tears during the process.  Mine didn't tear, but it was still kinda scary/puzzling while it was happening.  Might be worth checking out.

Oh -- here's a link to a better explanation

Good luck
5/06 VL 1M+, CD4 22, 5% , pneumonia, thrush -- O2 support 2 months, 6/06 +Kaletra/Truvada
9/06 VL 3959 CD4 297 13.5% 12/06 VL <400 CD4 350 15.2% +Pravachol
2007 VL<400, 70, 50 CD4 408-729 16.0% -19.7%
2008 VL UD CD4 468 - 538 16.7% - 24.6% Osteoporosis 11/08 doubled Pravachol, +Calcium/D
02/09 VL 100 CD4 616 23.7% 03/09 VL 130 5/09 VL 100 CD4 540 28.4% +Actonel (osteoporosis) 7/09 VL 130
8/09  new regimen Isentress/Epzicom 9/09 VL UD CD4 621 32.7% 11/09 VL UD CD4 607 26.4% swap Isentress for Prezista/Norvir 12/09 (liver and muscle issues) VL 50
2010 VL UD CD4 573-680 26.1% - 30.9% 12/10 VL 20
2011 VL UD-20 CD4 568-673 24.7%-30.6%
2012 VL UD swap Prezista/Norvir for Reyataz drop statin CD4 768-828 26.7%-30.7%
2014 VL UD - 48
2015 VL 130 Moved to Triumeq

Offline maddalfred

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« Reply #6 on: January 09, 2009, 12:48:45 PM »
In case anyone is interested. It dawned on me that these spells usually coincided with another thing that began happening a while back, usually a day or two after the "flashes". 

I got lost on my way to the docs appointment today. She is only a few exits down the road from me and I have been there innumerable times but as in the past, as I was driving along I suddenly had the sensation I had no idea where I was or how to get where I was going. Needless to say, I ended up on the third floor of an entirely different building than she is in and had to have a nurse call her office for directions. Made me late for my 930 appointment by about 15 minutes and I had left WAY early so as not to be late. She is on the second floor of the right building, as I later learned. It also made me feel downright stupid.

So. I decided to take a chance of getting locked up in the looney bin and told her nurse and her what had happened and about these "flashing" episodes. They had me take a memory test, not sure if I passed or not, but it did get me another donation to the vampire they have in the closet there and a possible appointment for an MRI. She thinks possible "mini-strokes"? wtf is that, anyway?

She also seems to think I need to see a gastro-enterologist (sp?) cuz of the lingering pain all the way through my mid section and have a more serious talk with my HIV doc about the Hep C.

I figured I would write all this down because there is a good chance I won't remember half the shit she said today by tomorrow. All this shit just adds to the feeling that I am pushing being the biggest waste of time and airspace in the world or the worlds biggest hypochondriac. You pick.

Here's wishing ebody else's day has better nooz than mine has so far. :(
<img src=http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj56/maddalfred1959/Me.jpg>

Offline franfrog

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Re: Dumb question
« Reply #7 on: January 09, 2009, 12:57:44 PM »
Not a dumb question at all.  I n fact I have had something very similar happen but it was not at night.  It was actually so severe and happened just about every 2 minutes or so all day.  I did contact my doctor who was puzzled.  It did seem to go away after a day or two but it is just not as severe now.
I still do get it but it is not as often or that much.  I do plan on telling the doctor again when I go back and also test me for MS since it runs in my family.  I just want to cover every aspect.

I hope you feel better and let us know how you make out. 
7/05 diagnosis cd4- 52 vl -?
08/05 cd4-299 vl-1900
10/05 cd4-249 vl-349
12/05 cd4-349 vl-52
03/06 cd4-454 vl-<50
06/06 cd4-508 vl-<50

Offline BT65

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Re: Dumb question
« Reply #8 on: January 09, 2009, 08:34:30 PM »
Rex, I would definitely push for getting that MRI to check your brain.

Waste of space? Naw, a waste of space is litter on the side of the road.  If you're feeling that blue, you might want to think about seeing a counselor and/or psychiatrist.  I know you've not been feeling "up" lately, and it seems to be lasting.  Please take care of yourself.
I've never killed anyone, but I frequently get satisfaction reading the obituary notices.-Clarence Darrow

Condom and Lube Info http://www.aidsmap.com/Condoms/page/1044833/
Please check out our lessons on PEP and PrEP. http://www.poz.com/factsheets/fs_2014_09_prep.pdf


Offline OneTampa

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Re: Dumb question
« Reply #9 on: January 09, 2009, 08:47:17 PM »
This is not a dumb question at all.  I agree with others regarding talking to your doctor.  If you are seeing flashes you should schedule a visit with your opthamologist. It could be any thing from a retina tear to early signs of glaucoma.

Stress, anxiety and disturbing dreams that occur outside of deep sleep can also trigger spontaneous panic attacks that can increase your heart rate and wake you in the middle of the night or make it difficult to fall into a deep sleep.

Please check with your doctor.

Take care.
« Last Edit: January 09, 2009, 08:57:14 PM by OneTampa »
"He is my oldest child. The shy and retiring one over there with the Haitian headdress serving pescaíto frito."

Offline J.R.E.

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  • Joined Dec-2003 Living positive, since 1985.
Re: Dumb question
« Reply #10 on: January 10, 2009, 12:23:56 AM »

Get yourself a good eye exam. Maybe your dealing with Ocular Migraine. Just a thought...



Current Meds ; Viramune, Epzicom, 40mg of simvastatin, 25 mg of Hydrochlorothiazide.
Metoprolol tartrate 25mg






Diagnosed positive in 1985,.. In October of 2003, My t-cell count was 16, Viral load was over 500,000, Percentage at that time was 5%. I started on  HAART on October 24th, 2003.

 As of 9/16/16,  t-cells are at 501,   Viral load remains <40

Current % is at 12%

 65 years young.

Offline maddalfred

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Re: Dumb question
« Reply #11 on: January 13, 2009, 07:14:50 AM »
Went for MIR yesterday afternoon. Since I had reported having had metal fragments removed from both eyes years ago when working in a muffler shop, they did a preliminary x-ray to determine if there was any possibility of dislodging any remaining specs and popping an eyeball or blinding me from the MRI. Would have never thought of that as a possibility.

MRI went well; some discomfort, (weird taste) from the contrast dye. Supposed to get a call from primary care within a few days with results. (I'm sure it's all in my head) Little sick humor there. Not stressing over whatever the result do or don't reveal. Just surprised that the MRI machine could get a lock on the two remaining cells bouncing around in my skull long enough to take a picture. I did find out my internal counting clock is off by about 49 seconds. (8 minutes only took only 7011 seconds) I guess it has slowed down along with everything else about me.

Having said all that, I called in sick today. Feeling really punky and just so tired. I wish I had a magic energy pill to go with the 11 others I take every day if nothing more than to round it out to an even dozen. 11 is such a bad number when you have mild OCD.

I do appreciate all the comments others have made and believe it or not I DO want to get better, I just have to make it through this latest round of funkiness. I have a bad habbit of pushing people away from me when I have a very low spell and Ieven though I know mentally it is wrong, I haven't figured out a way to
<img src=http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj56/maddalfred1959/Me.jpg>

Offline MarcoPoz

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Re: Dumb question
« Reply #12 on: January 13, 2009, 10:11:23 AM »
Veteran of MANY MRI's here ;-)  My internal clock slows  as does my breathing and heart rate--due to meditating in the tube ;-)
Oh--and they aren't joking when they say "remove ALL piercings"

I've had the 'flashes' before and no medical/organic explination to them.  Stay calm, don't sweat it.  I used to get those way-too-long episodes of where-the-hell-am-I, and found them to be VERY disturbing.  That decreased in frequency when I was able to de-stress.  For me, I think it was just that my brain going into hyperdrive and 'missing' some basic thoughts while I pondered everything else.  Could be the ADHD or as I like to say, "I'm just completely interested in absoultely everyting".


Get the results back and plan accordingly.  Hang in there, Bud!


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