new sensations

by tinglyfeeling on January 31, 2010

This whole business with the MS originated in my lower right leg. As far as I know, anyway. The numbness mostly affects my mid-to-outer shin and wraps around to stop in the middle of my calf. And sometimes it spreads down past my ankle and onto the top of my foot. Tapping the skin there just feels like a dull thudding.

Sometimes, just to be extra interesting, the tissue near the base of my right toes appears swollen, as if my foot is retaining water. It doesn’t hurt. It’s just annoying. No one can tell me why it does that.

I’ve come to accept these symptoms as the norm. Even on my good days, my right leg is partially numb. It is what it is.

But lately, the leg has been bothering me more. I’ve been feeling a weird sharp, prickly sensation just to the right of the back of my knee (I wish I knew the names for all the body’s tiny parts) where the tendons connect lower thigh to upper calf. It’s a really irritating sensation, one that’s caused me to favor the leg more–I put my weight into my left leg, and even balance on one foot to take pressure off of the right foot, which has been feeling more like I’m standing on a block of wood than a foot. When it’s like this, I feel uneven, like my right leg is longer than my left.

And I’ve also felt these random shots of heat, like something thick and warm oozing down my leg. This sensation mostly spreads down the outside of my shin, over my ankle and onto the top of my foot, but sometimes it will start at the back of my thigh. I might trigger this when I put pressure on my foot, but otherwise, it just happens. Like most things with MS, it’s unpredictable.

Then there’s today, where I felt something vibrating like the beating wings of a buzzing insect trapped under the skin just above my ankle. I couldn’t see any twitching and when I touched my fingers to that spot, I didn’t feel anything different. I massaged the muscle and was only reminded of how numb that part of my body is.

I don’t mean for this to sound like a complaint. I’m not terribly concerned about these sensations–not yet, anyway. I just thought I should note these changes somewhere. So I’ll just wait and see if it gets worse, I guess. Until then, I’ll keep doing yoga, walking as much as possible, and in the spring, I’ll start riding my bike again. Party on.

And because this blog post’s title is a nod to INXS, who I loved in the late ’80s and early ’90s, here’s a video of them performing “New Sensation” at the 1988 MTV Music Awards, with an intro by Arsenio Hall (where is he now?):

Wow. That was a little embarrassing. I can’t imagine that I’d like this music now if I hadn’t first liked it in 8th grade. And check out the shoulderpads and ruffles on Michael Hutchence (may he rest in peace).

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  • greenandchic

    I'm sorry you're experiencing these symptoms. Its always alarming when we have a new symptom to focus on and worry about. For me, I have to keep in mind that not everything I will experience will be MS related. The best thing to do is keep a daily journal so that you have a clear record of what and when.

  • tinglyfeeling

    Thanks, Carla. Do you keep a daily #MultScler symptoms/WTF journal? Where do you write it–on your computer or in an actual notebook? That's sort of what Twitter was supposed to be about for me, but I spend so much time internetting as my non-MS self that I sometimes neglect this space–and I don't want to talk about my symptoms every day. Anyway, while I don't keep a daily journal, I do record how I felt during the week & what's going on with me in the journal I keep for my weekly shots. So there's that, at least. It will be interesting to review it in a couple years. heh.

    As for the new-ish symptoms, I've been really busy at work lately and I wonder if the added stress might have something to do with the leg acting up. Also, the weather has been unseasonably balmy. There I go, looking for causes for the effects again, even though I know I shouldn't…. :-)

  • Lori Kidwell

    has daily trackers for many things, including MS.

  • tinglyfeeling

    Cool–thanks! Have you used this site to keep track of your MS symptoms? Do they allow for customization or the creation of categories to group symptoms, or do they just provide you with a checklist… aaaah, I should just look at it, I suppose. ;-) Thanks!

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  • Lori Kidwell

    There is some customization available. I do use it, and it's mostly good at just spotting trends, and mentally prompting me when something new has started and seeing if it sticks around.

  • greenandchic

    I keep a daily (or sometimes weekly) journal so that I can have something to refer to when I see my Neurologist. I would have a hard time remembering if it was only on my computer, though I also have my Blackberry…

  • jesbwally

    I call them “hot pokers” and they suck! I seriously kept looking for something burning my leg over and over until I asked my buddy with ms if he had ever had that feeling. Tell your doc…and yes more drugs that we can't afford! It took a couple months for the pokers to go away. I now have the joy of my right mid-section and upper leg go numb. MS is such a strange thing and so hard to describe! The best thing to do is just what you are doing…talking about it! Hey did this happen or have you ever felt this…makes us less “alone” in our journey…ha and makes us feel a little less crazy! onward my friend!

  • tinglyfeeling

    Hey, thanks for the comment! Hot pokers sounds really awful–the sensation I was feeling was warm, but not burning. I haven't felt it for a couple weeks, but tomorrow is a new day. heh.

    I also sometimes experience numbness on the right side of my torso, but it feels like it's *on the inside.* Sounds weird, I know, but I swear it feels internal. Ech. This is a strange disease we're living with, my friend.

    Thanks for reading. :-)

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