Friday, 20 February 2009

Psychiatry to neurology!

After coming home from work on the Friday I mentioned, back in 2007, I lay almost every hour of the day on the sofa in our lounge. My wife and son constantly badgered me to go to the doctor. I just wanted to lie there. The only positive outcome of that time was losing almost two stones in weight as I couldn't be bothered eating!

Eventually, after four weeks, I gave in and was taken by my wife, Susie, to the docs. He listened to me and to Susie. I was finding it hard to put a sentence together as I couldn't concentrate on words and meanings, etc. (couldn't read or even listen to music as it took too much effort). The doctor agreed with Susie that I was probably suffering from depression. And, true enough, when I filled out the questionnaire he put on front of me, I had to admit that I had depressive symptoms. "But, what about this dizziness I've got? And this strange numbness in my head on the left side?" I asked. He said that depression could bring strange symptoms and it would all probably go away. It didn't. It got worse. Much worse.

That was in July 2007. By Christmas, the numbness in my head turned to pain and my balance and walking were getting worse. I loved walking. I was out on the West Highland Way almost every day (we live beside a section of it), and although I wobbled a bit like a drunk man from time to time, I loved getting out and being among the hills and moors - watching the timid deer in the distance and the buzzards soaring overhead. I could never tire of that.

With some difficulty, I returned to work around Christmas 2007. I had seen a psychiatrist (remember they were still treating this as depression and I was looking for all the help I could get!) who arranged for me to work half days for a month to ease myself back in. I was back to work, but I knew something was far from right with my health - and I was pretty sure the problem was in my head - so, I asked my GP to refer me to a neurologist. The GPs words were "OK, but they won't find anything."

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