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Is this TMS?

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by gregor1, Feb 22, 2015.

  1. gregor1

    gregor1 Newcomer

    Hi guys. im new here. Writing is somewhat painful for me, so I will try to keep it simple. I originally posted this message on another forum, but recent research has brought me to the subject of TMS. Could someone please tell how plausible it is that I'm a TMS sufferer.

    I am 26, male. As for my problems... Let's say it all started with gradually increasing back pain last summer. It was caused by hard physical labor (moving company) abroad plus bad furniture that I had to use where I stayed (bed, chair, pillows etc.). I have bad posture (deep lower lordosis) and always experienced some degree of low back pain after prolonged standing or walking, so I wasn't too concerned when It started hurting me after work. It never was really painful, just unpleasant. After a while I noticed that this pain would go upwards toward my head, making my spinae erector muscles really hard and stiff - but still not that painful unless I sat in my chair that was not so comfortable. I knew this was not good, but I had to work only one month more (the job itself was not painful at all), so I thought "not a big deal, I will get better home". When I got home it did seem to get better with time, my muscles loosened up a bit, the pain was decreasing.

    But here is where this all gets weird and seemingly unexplainable. I had moderate pain and stiffness only in those two long muscles that run along spine. I didnt have any nerve pain, no acute fits of spasm. Now, as the pain subsided, it began to wonder towards my hips (muscles at the side of my abdomen hurt for two days), then ribs, then I had some pain behind scapula, my shoulder hurt a bit. The pain resembled that when you exercise and feel the tiredness accompanied by weakness. It would go away, if I lie down flat on the ground and then move elsewhere. Every place the pain went to, it seemed lesser and lesser.

    I dont like doctors after being misdiagnosed on many occasions, so I didnt see one that far. I though that this is natural, that muscles re-adjust somehow. What I didnt want to acknowledge up to that point, is that every spot the pain went to - left muscle weakness and stiffness. It just seemed too weird to accept and I decided not to bother. Pain was going away - thats all I cared about.

    I was working out the weaker spots and it all looked as if getting back in track, until one day I woke up with really stiff neck (not painful). I freaked out and made an appointment to get an mri of my spine. In the meantime, just like the other muscles, my neck got really thin, all those tense muscles that I got just disappeared overnight. Not only those - ALL the muscles in my back were much much smaller.

    The mri of my spine showed no significant changes, nothing that could cause those symptoms. Every doctor I saw told me to either get a mri of my little brain or get some PT. Since im my mind all of this was mechanically inflicted, I figured they won't find anything in the brain and I went with physiotherapy. The guy told me I have lower crossed syndrome and made me stretch a ton. Then we continued to strenghtening exercises. But just like before, after some improvement, my muscles get weaker no matter how hard I train. Even if I perform better at the training, I have increasing problems with dailly tasks. Everything just seems getting heavier for me, I can feel the weight of my own body, and its not nice. I get tingling and burning sensations all over.

    This all lead me to the conclussion that I must indeed have some musco-sceletal or autoimmune disease. It just doesn't make sense. Why would my hands and calfs get so weak after some trauma to a completely distant muscle? I also developed slight sight loss and mild tinnitus.

    If anyone could shed some light on this one, I would be very thankful. Let me just mention that I do have a strong tendency to somatise my mental state, I have a history of re-occurring depression, I grind my teeth at night, and get mild flu nearly every time I get upset.

    thank you in advance
  2. Ryan

    Ryan Well known member

    I'm no doctor but it sounds to me like you have tms. Especially since your mri came back clean. Time to get to work. Start getting in your head like you never been before. Look at your current stressors and how you react to life.

    I would start reading books. Try healing back pain, great pain deception, and divided mind. Piece together your own puzzle, you have come to the right place. Best of luck and never give up, you will heal when your ready. We are what we believe.

    Lizzy likes this.
  3. gregor1

    gregor1 Newcomer

    Thanks Ryan. I am 50% convinced that it is TMS. The other half tells me it is repeated strain injury (which is often linked to TMS). I have done many blood test and am on my way to do EMG, CT of brain, you name it. However, something tells me nothing will show up as it hasn't so far. Let me list why I think it is and why I don't think it is TSM.

    - I feel better while and after exercising.
    - Migrating pain/discomfort/burning/ tingling all over body
    - Perfect symmetry on both sides of my body
    - Perfectionist. Emotional person.
    - Tendency to somatize emotions (e.g bruxism)

    - True muscle atrophy as the main symptom
    - Very gradual onset
    - Brushing it off for a long time instead of dwelling on it

    I would really appreciate someone telling me how often you see people with this kind symptoms as I am going crazy ...
  4. Ozzy

    Ozzy Peer Supporter

    Gregor, looks all the all the hallmarks of TMS to me too.

    Two gems of advice I was given on this forum which aided a very swift recovery (in four days the worst pain I have ever known had reduced by 95%, three weeks later it was gone completely):

    1. To heal from TMS you have to be 100% convinced of the diagnoses - any doubt about whether it is caused by a physical reason or a psychological one has to be eradicated - only when you are 100% convinced that it is psychological can you make a full recovery.

    2. To work out if it is psychological or not keep a Pain Diary. Every day write the time of day, what you are doing/feeling/experiencing and start to make links between when the pain is there and what you are feeling or doing.

    For me the Pain Diary was overwhelming evidence that it was psychological - my pain disappeared at night, it got worse when I was helping other people instead of myself, etc.

    Sounds like you are very self-aware so you will sort this out.

    Good luck,


    PS - the fact you feel better while exercising - if this was physical you'd surely get worse pain for aggravating the pain site with movement.
    Boston Redsox likes this.

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