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» LymeNet Flash » Questions and Discussion » Medical Questions » Dr wants me to have Electromyogram (EMG) test

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Author Topic: Dr wants me to have Electromyogram (EMG) test
gwb
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As I explained in another thread here a few days ago, I've been having some really bad leg pain from my groin to my knee on the inside of my thigh.

It has been going on for some time but I usually have a day or two when it isn't so bad. Lately the pain has been almost constant and the intensity of the pain has increased over the past few weeks to the point that it is unbearable at times.

Today I went to see a neurologist (not LL). He said my right leg is definitely very weak and he doesn't know if it's muscle or nerve related.

I told him I have Lyme disease and asked if this could possibly be what's been aggravating more lately. Of course, he had no answer for that.

Anyway, he wants to do a Electromyogram (EMG) which involves sticking needles and electrical current in the area of my leg that I have pain in.

Anyone had this test before? Is there any danger in having this test as a Lyme patient or not really?

You comments and input would be greatly appreciated.

Gary

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seekhelp
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I'm not sure about the Lyme aspect/dangers, but I've had it 9-10 times over 12 years. Not fun. [Frown]
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ecr1
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i have had that test a couple times due t severe muscle damage from lyme. had a cpk over 12,000. The test is not as bad as it sounds. You may be more sensitive in certain areas of your leg (behind the knee for example). I had it on my entire left side of my body. It may startle you at first but you will probably get used to it. Not sure about the dangers to Lyme patients. hope not. In my test, despite severe known muscle damage, the EMGs came back normal. Didn't show anything.
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Keebler
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I think such a test could send you into a major down spin from the adrenal shock. It will also make the spirochetes angry and borrow deeper. Spirochetes HATE vibration and will protest, spewing more toxins. (This is my opinion based on what I've read.)

I had this done to my arms over 20 years ago and it was the most painful test I've ever had.

You don't need to reply, this is more as a checklist for yourself:

Are you seeing a LLMD? what does s/he say? I would not trust a neurologist who is not LL to evaluate. No point in going through the torturous pain if you still have a ways to go with lyme treatment.

Now, if all your other lyme symptoms are better and this is the only thing still bothering you, maybe. But, just how would this change the course of your treatment from the neurologist? If LL, s/he would still have no clue how to proceed.

First, have you had cranial-sacral therapy to help your spine (and nerves to your legs)?

Have you had some acupuncture or massage? Yoga?

What is your level of magnesium and what form? Are you up to bowel tolerance with 1 - 2,000 mg a day?

Are you taking fish oil every day?

Are you gluten-free (that should help)?

You are not consuming ANY (even a trace) of aspartame?

And, are you exposed to mold on a regular basis (that can cause nerve/muscle pain)?

What is your liver support (as that will help lower toxins that affect your legs)?

Have you been assessed for other TBD (tick-borne disease) and other chronic stealth infections such as Cpn or mycoplasma?

see: www.cpnhelp.org - Cpn can mimic "MS"

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Keebler
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http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/09/17/the-alternative-medicine-cabinet-arnica/?scp=1&sq=Arnica&st=cse

September 17, 2009 - NYT

The Alternative Medicine Cabinet: Arnica for Pain Relief
By ANAHAD O'CONNOR

Excerpts:

. . . scientists have found good evidence that it works. One randomized study published in 2007 looked at 204 people with osteoarthritis in their hands and found that an arnica gel preparation worked just as well as daily ibuprofen, and with minimal side effects. Another study of 79 people with arthritis of the knee found that when patients used arnica gel twice daily for three to six weeks, they experienced significant reductions in pain and stiffness and had improved function. Only one person experienced an allergic reaction.

========
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/entrez
PubMed Search:
Arnica - 248 abstracts


http://www.vitacost.com/Heel-Traumeel-Anti-Inflammatory-Ointment

Trameel ointment (more like a lotion - the gel is very greasy so I'd avoid that). This is a good product for relief but I would like to find one that does not contain any petroleum products.

You can also buy pure Arnica oil (not petroleum based) but I don't have a source.
-

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seekhelp
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Wow Keebler, you must be super sensitive if that was the most painful test ever. It's not fun by any means, but spinal taps and other stuff made that seem like a breeze. I guess we're all different.

I only say this to not scare the person away if it may yield info. It's unpleasant, but tolerable in my opinion. Of course, we all have different pain thresholds. Mine with herxing isn't too high. [Frown]

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Keebler
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seek,

Never had a spinal tap. Never will. Doctors must find less painful ways to diagnose. Most of the torture stuff never really gives them great detail, anyway.
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seekhelp
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I agree Keebler, but if life or death..... Too many tests are run for nothing in medicine.
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massman
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Worked w a Chiropractic Physician who sometimes had them done in his office.

Some patients said they were very painful, others said not too painful at all. About the same as here.

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bettyg
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mine had ELECTRICAL SHOCKS to my legs; NOT all of it, but it was painful and hurt for awhile afterwards.

found neuropathy in certain areas....

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gwb
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bettyg, what treatment did the doctor give you for neuropathy?

Gary

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shelly23
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Is wasnt to bad its worth it in the end to prove to clear yourself of any other nero disease..

Its completly up to you but i would say overall its not that bad

--------------------
Shelly
~ IGM~Positive
CDC Positive
23-25 +
31+++
34++
41+


I am a Dreamer, Believer, and Conquer; I will overcome this disease !!!

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LisaS
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Mine came back normal on both of my legs but it showed nerve damage in my arms stemming from bulging disks in my neck. It also showed I had carpal tunnel. For me it was the first test that actually showed reasons for some of my symptoms, like numb and tingly arms and hands.

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gwb
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Lisa, what did the doctor do to help you with your nerve damage issues? Did he prescribe something and did it help?

Everyone who commented--thanks!

I am scheduled to get the EMG test on Monday. But the pain is so horrifically bad today that I am not sure I can hold up that long. It's the worst pain I've had in years.

Gary

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hurtingramma
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I have had EMG's done a couple of times. And I agree with Keebler. Painful! The first guy that did it kept going back to the same spot over and over so much that I wanted to haul off a smack him!

The 2nd one wasn't nearly as bad. The answer? Neuropathy. Treatment? None.

What's the point?

--------------------
"Few of us can do great things, but all of us can do small things with great love". Mother Theresa

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gwb
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hurtingramma, how do you deal with the pain?

[ 09-24-2009, 01:12 PM: Message edited by: gwb ]

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lou
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I have decided that with testing in general, it has to help with treatment or be required by a LLMD for protection purposes (his/hers).

If tests do not meet these requirements, I don't do them, especially if they are painful and not diagnostic. And especially if the results are interpreted by a non lyme literate person.

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IckyTicky
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I've had it done to my right arm because I get weakness in that arm and hand. It came back normal.

Yeah, it's not a pleasant test..and legs are a bit more sensitive. But I was calm through it and not traumatized or anything. Then again, needles don't usually bother me anymore.

--------------------
IGM: 18+, 23+, 30+, 31+++, 34+, 39IND, 41++, 58+++, 66+, 83-93IND
IGG: 31+, 39IND, 41+
Also positive for Mycoplasma Pneumoniae and RMSF.
Whole family of 5 dx with Lyme.

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Keebler
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Really, not to scare you but I wish I had known in advance that the needles they used for me were far longer than those used in shots - thicker, too. Now, they may be different now. I hope so.

You might ask to see the needles first and then you can say to go ahead or not. Also know that, at any point in the test if it gets to be too much, you have a perfect right to stop. You are paying for this. Make sure it works the best it can for you at all times.

If you take some music - & your favorite picture of nature, etc. - these things may help to make your time there more pleasant. Ask for whatever you need at any time.


I hope this goes well for you. Good luck.
-

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Elaine G
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GWB

I have the same pain from groin down to knee.

It was the result of a lumbar surgery herniated

disc cleanup 8 years ago. Now an active nerve

acts up when I bend too much. It causes

tightness.

My groin muscle gets tight then the piriformus

muscle tightens then the back muscles, then every

thing freezes up and I walk bent over.

I started doing a yoga pose to stretch the groin

and hip muscles and have averted many freeze ups.

The yoga pose is called a sleeping swan.

You can see an example for this pose:

Sleeping Swan

I usually do it before bedtime sometimes in

during the day also. It sure helps stretch that

groin muscle.

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gwb
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Thank you all for your comments regarding the EMG test. I'm certainly not looking forward to it, but I do believe it will be in my best interests to go ahead and have the test.

I started leg therapy yesterday and today and it seems to have helped me some already. I told the therapist that since I was sensing some improvement from the therapy I was thinking of canceling, or at least postponing, the test to another time.

The therapist believes the test will be beneficial because it can help them determine the best type of therapy to give me. If the problem is nerve related they will take a different approach with the therapy than they would if it's muscle related.

The therapist did say that they can work with my leg if it's nerve related but the results are not always as good as it is with muscle related problems.

Regardless of what the test shows, I do plan to continue with therapy because I feel even with just two treatments so far that I did get some relief from the pain. I wish I had started therapy a long time ago.

I will post the results of my test as soon as I know more.

Thanks again to everyone for your responses and input.

Gary

P.S Elaine, I had to laugh when I saw the example of the Sleeping Swan pose. This 56 year old arthritic body of mine could never come close to doing anything like that. If you are able to do that I applaud you BIG time! : )

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Keebler
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The yoga links here are for intending for those who can't quite to a pretzel pose. Her programs have been on PBS and I'm very impressed with her style in the "Yoga for the Rest of Us"


http://flash.lymenet.org/scripts/ultimatebb.cgi/topic/1/86028?

Topic: QiGong & Tai Chi & Yoga
-

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LisaS
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The needles they used in mine were very long but very skinny. Just felt like mosquito bites. Nothing bad, especially on my hands, but the legs were a little worse.

My neurologist just prescribed physical therapy. Which helped me learn some techniques to relax my neck but nothing that really works long term. He didn't suggest anything to help with carpal tunnel.

He saw me like two more times then said if I had anymore problems to go see a city dr. Didn't prescribe anything but steroids to help with my neck. He was annoyed with me because I questioned this being due to lyme, so he just dismissed me as a patient.

But I was still happy to have the papers saying I had nerve and muscle damage in my arms and neck, after being ridiculed by all the ER docs and my regular dr, that all this numbness, pain, and tingling was in my head!

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