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Thread: Need help understanding

  1. #1

    Need help understanding

    I am Canadian but have lived in Osaka, Japan for the past seventeen years. I have relatively good spoken Japanese, but as I never studied properly, but reading is limited. This has made it a little bit more difficult to understand exactly what happened to me.

    In August 2009 I had sudden lower back pain and within three hours I couldn't feel or move my legs (for the week before this happened I had a terrible headache). I was rushed to the hospital at about 2:00AM and had emergency surgery at around 2:00PM. They told me there was something putting pressure on my spinal cord at T10/11.

    After the surgery they told me that they believed it was blood from a ruptured AVM. They offered me an angiogram which I didn't accept due to the risks and then went to a rehab hospital for six months.

    During this time, I got a lot of feeling back especially in my left side (almost perfect) and could tell hot and cold a pain. I had relatively low spasticity as was regaining some active motion. Then after about three months my spasticity shot through the roof and the clonus got crazy and was getting worse so they took an MRI. This time they found an arachnoid cyst, which they tell me is not uncommon after trauma to the spinal cord. The surgeon (different from the first surgeon) said that it was best to get rid of it as he was worried that it was massive and that it was making my spasticity so bad that it would get in the way of rehab.

    So, we got rid of the arachnoid cyst and I lost most of my feeling with the cyst. The doctor said it was even bigger than they imagined and had basically flattened my spinal cord. This time they cut my 17cms, hacked off some bone so they could get to it, and put a few bolts in my back.

    But other than losing my feeling I didn't see any improvement and the spasticity jumped back up within a few weeks. Finally after about 8 months my clonus is almost gone (the therapist has to give me ankle a good flex to get it going), my spasticity is going down and I've moved myself down to 100mg as opposed to 110mg and I'm going to try to lower it again. I also have feeling creeping back little by little and active motion. The second surgeon is quite hopeful and he talks about three years. He says that my spasticity and my pins and needles feeling is important to recovery and that I should make friends with them. Now, I like this guy and since most doctors don't make predictions like this, I tend to think he knows what he's talking about (or at least I'd like to believe him). So I'll keep up with my rehab.

    But my real question is this. The second surgeon doesn't believe I had an AVM but because I want to know, he suggested an MR angiogram which doesn't pose the same risks as a regular angiogram. So I did it and am awaiting the results.

    My current status on my charts is 硬膜内血腫 KOMAKU NAI KESSHU (I write the Japanese in Roman characters because your computers will probably not be able to see the Japanese). I'm having problems understanding the English name of this so that I can find out what happened.

    KOMAKU=dural NAI=in KESSHU=Hematoma

    I find all types of dural hematoma. Epidural, subdural, intradural, extradural. Are these all the same? I imagine that extradural is not it, but are the other three the same just different words?

    Also, is a hematoma and a hemorrhage the same?

    I've also been reading about spinal strokes. Is this just a generic phrase for the different kinds of bleeding that could take place in the spine.

    When I go see the doctor again, I want to know what kinds of things I should be asking about, so if you could give me any advice on this matter, too, it would be appreciated.

    In regards to what he says about spasticity and the pins and needles being good signs, I can't find any information about this. Would anyone know where I could find information about this?

    Sorry for the length of this post, but I figure that the more information I give, the more you'll be able to give. Thank you in advance for your help.
    Dennis Tesolat
    www.StemCellsandAtomBombs.blogspot.com

    "Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. And so we must straighten our backs and work for our freedom."
    Martin Luther King

  2. #2
    Moderator jody's Avatar
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    Dr wise is from japan. he can tell you what is what, but may not be able to answere right away because he gets busy.
    sorry you were hurt. welcome to care cure.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by jody View Post
    Dr wise is from japan. he can tell you what is what, but may not be able to answere right away because he gets busy.
    sorry you were hurt. welcome to care cure.
    Thank you very much, but I guess I didn't make my self clear.
    The problem I'm having is not so much a Japanese problem in as much as a technical problem.
    If I could read Japanese easily, I would just plug in KOMAKUNAI KESSHU and read about it, my problem is that I have to find the English equivalent of this and when I do that I find that there is subdural and intradural and even epidural. So I guess my questions is about if there is a difference between these three terms or if they are three things that mean the same.
    I'll keep plugging away on the internet, but if anyone knows the difference between these three terms, it would be very useful.

    Dennis
    Dennis Tesolat
    www.StemCellsandAtomBombs.blogspot.com

    "Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. And so we must straighten our backs and work for our freedom."
    Martin Luther King

  4. #4
    To my knowledge (which is kind of linited) the three are different. Hope that helps a little

  5. #5
    I think you need a reply from a medical professional, but based on my experience as a medical transcriptionist, I surmise that the differences are reflected in the prefixes. "Sub" means under, "intra" means between, and "epi" means on top of - so presumably, these prefixes would locate the hematoma in relation to the dura. But I do wish a health care professional could clarify this further.

    Regarding the difference between a hemorrhage and a hematoma: again, input from a medical expert would be a big help - but generally speaking, a hematoma is a bruise, and a hemorrhage is an active bleed. But there might be nuance and terms of art involved here that I am unaware of.
    Last edited by Bonnette; 01-15-2011 at 04:41 PM. Reason: addition

  6. #6
    Senior Member lynnifer's Avatar
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    A lot of us have that pins and needles feeling. I still have it after more than 25yrs. I do hope you see recovery!

  7. #7
    Thank you everyone so much for your help.
    I've figured it out. I had a subdural hematoma. It was so quick. From the beginning of the pain to the paralysis was about three hours.
    Reading up on this, I've found that it is very rare.
    Well, I'll soon get the results to my MR Angiogram to see if it was an AVM or not, but my surgeon doesn't think it was.
    Dennis Tesolat
    www.StemCellsandAtomBombs.blogspot.com

    "Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. And so we must straighten our backs and work for our freedom."
    Martin Luther King

  8. #8
    Wow, yes, that was quick. Fingers crossed that you'll get all the information and details you need from the angiogram results. Best wishes to you.

  9. #9
    Sitting and waiting in the hospital as we speak. Should get the MR Angiogram results in a few minutes (hours).
    Thank you very much for all your help.
    It was actually very interesting seeing the 0bolivian girl who had the surgery on her AVM and is now starting the long journey to walking after four years.
    Don't know if this makes me want an AVM so they can do the same magic on me.
    Regardless if all that, I'll know whether it was an AVM in just a bit.

    Thank you.
    Dennis Tesolat
    www.StemCellsandAtomBombs.blogspot.com

    "Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. And so we must straighten our backs and work for our freedom."
    Martin Luther King

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