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Thread: Banding?

  1. #1
    Senior Member lynnifer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Windsor ON Canada


    I've read lots of Transverse Myelitis sufferers say they have 'banding' pain.

    What exactly is this? I've felt like my spine is being choked by two fists - literally - and it's been getting worse over the past two years - moreso since the beginning of this year (can't sit or lay down comfortably).

    I haven't seen a neuro since my diagnosis at age 12 and since I was static - there was no reason to. I'm a tad bit concerned. I've always felt lucky to avoid the pains so described by so many TMer's.

    If I'm going to start having new symptoms, I'll be more inclined to 'opt out' because my coping skills are in the negative at the moment.

    Anyone else have TM for more than 20yrs and notice something new, other than aging, lol?
    Roses are red. Tacos are enjoyable. Don't blame immigrants, because you're unemployable.

    T-11 Flaccid Paraplegic due to TM July 1985 @ age 12

  2. #2
    TM and MS both feature this symptom. In MS, it's called the "MS hug" - a benign-sounding term for something that can actually feel like being squeezed by a boa constrictor. I didn't experience this symptom until two years ago (nearly 15 years after my first symptom of MS, initially diagnosed as TM), and now it is almost constant - and very frightening, especially at night. This banding is caused by lesions in the cord, which is why it is a common feature of both TM and MS. It can appear at any time in the course of these conditions.

    Like so many of the other issues with TM and MS, there's not much that can be done about the hug/band - antispasmodics can sometimes take the edge off, but that's about it. The good news is (and I'm not kidding or being sarcastic) that it won't actually kill us, it just feels like it will.

    The hug or band can manifest as anything from slight local tightness to squeezing pain of the heart attack variety. Given the recent onset of your fist-choking sensation, it would probably be advisable to rule out cardiac or disc issues, but if none of those things are present, you probably have The Band - even 20 years-post.

  3. #3
    I get this too, I've since found out that it is the 'MS hug'.

    At first I thought it was pain due to some previously broken ribs, bad posture, the underwire of my bra, indegestion, at it's worst I thought it was a heart attack or something.

    The pain can be so instense , it takes my breath away and I get light headed, I believe that I'm very lucky as I don't have this constantly and when I do it usually passes within a few hours or days.

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Florida, USA
    I don't know if it is banding (but I think it is) but many times the muscles around my stomach (below the belt line to the sternum and breasts) and back seem to constrict very tightly and it is very uncomfortable. It happens a lot at night, especially if I have constipation issues. It seems to help to wear very loose clothing when I go to bed.
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  5. #5
    This is a type of radicular pain, sometimes found in other causes of SCI/D as well. It usually is along a specific dermatome.

    TENS can sometimes be helpful with this, as can acupuncture. Both are worth a try. Other meds for neuropathic pain such as Neurontin or Lyrica can also sometimes be helpful.


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