SL761

Scared of ALS

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Hi there,

I'm a 21-y/o male. About two weeks ago, I noticed what feels like a stiffness in my right foot and a burning / stinging pain located in my right arm / right leg sometimes. Both limbs seem weaker than usual, and today I noticed some mild twitching in both my right arm / leg as well.

This is about the third time I've been anxious about ALS / other degenerative diseases.The first was in 9th grade, and the second lasted for around four months in my 12th grade of high school. This time around, it almost seemed like a joke at first... I thought to myself "Huh, my arm seems sort of weak today, I guess I have ALS". Fast forward to now, and I can't get it out of my head... This time around, it feels like I'll be lucky if I don't have the disease. I'm scared to plan for the future because I don't know if I'll live to experience it or not.

If I can be reasonable for a moment, I guess it's possible that the large amounts of stress generated by some university exams and a recent heat wave could exacerbate my anxiety to the point that I could invent these symptoms. Still, I'm scared that even anxiety couldn't create feelings of soreness, stiffness, weakness, and twitching only in my right arm and leg. Is that even possible? Really, I'm just scared... Should I visit a doctor? Since I've come to the family clinic with unfounded concerns a lot in the past, I'm worried that my doctor will just brush me off this time. I don't want to end up like the boy who cried wolf.

 

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I spent almost a year certain I had ALS. I had it all. Perceived weakness, fatigue, massive twitching all over, you name it. It was stress. It was anxiety. It was fake. Yours is too. If you couldn’t walk suddenly, I’d say see a doctor. The fact that your mind is focusing on it makes it worse. You’re manifesting your own worst fear. Do yourself a favor and ignore it and forget it is happening. Run up some stairs or go play a sport. If you can do those activities then you can’t have ALS. You’re fine. You got this. Turn back now before you fall into the spiral. 🙂 Remember you’re afraid of the thought of ALS, you don’t have it. 

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You’re 21. Odds are like 1 in a million. You have pain. Pain and other sensory symptoms are not part of the ALS clinical picture. Perceived weakness is another way to say anxiety and hyper focusing makes you believe your limb is weak. Like Stealth says, clinical weakness is obvious..you can’t climb stairs, hold a coffee cup, rise from a seated to a standing position, turn a key in a lock.
 

Tough love here...stop this nonsense NOW! Going down this road will only needlessly torture yourself.

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I have said this many times on this board and I will say it again. ALS is an extremely, extremely, extremely rare disease with only 5,000 cases diagnosed per year in the USA. I have also known a fair amount of people who have had it, including my former bosses wife who passed away from it last year at aged 62. Your symptoms are nothing like theirs so I would concentrate your worries on something else. 

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Thank you all so much for the replies. It's funny how even just spending one day without worrying about my own premature doom can make me feel so much better. I'm sure this fear will come back again sometime, but at least now I've got a little more knowledge on what kind of messed up symptoms my brain can create out of nowhere. Thanks again!

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Hey there m8...27 y/o male here and let me tell you my issues started a lot like yours...i'm 8 months into the twitching zone now  with no change in strenght or w/e...most of the pain and other stuff are gone but when it first started it was a lot of stiffness and pain and tingling and burning...what somone with A S told me is that Als starts subtle and it's not that acute if you know what i mean...it wont start as body wide havoc....it will start subtle and usually in the little muscles...and by the time you notice any other symptoms you already know smth is not working right....mb this will help you...for what is worth after 8 months i still have bad days when im thinking .."what if i'm that unfortunate dude to have that really rare and slow kind of progression" ...it comes with this ha stuff or bfs or whatever this is ....in time it does get easier to shake it off and live the moment tho😁

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Thanks for the reply, I really appreciate it. I'm glad to say I'm doing a lot better now. The twitching and soreness isn't nearly as bad as it was, and taking a few days to go hiking around outdoors and get myself out of my own head helped a lot. There will definitely be bad days in the future, but I'm glad I have all of you here to talk to whenever things get bad.

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