CFS or Fibro?
I am a 40 year old male who has had consistent reoccuring health issues for more than 9 years now. Over the past year, these issues have left me essentially disabled, unable to work and without an income. I've been labeled as a hypochondriac, lazy, and every other kind of negative term that goes along with being a reasonably young person with chronic health issues that doesn't have a diagnosis. Although a couple family members are supportive, most are not.
As I recall, this started back in 2002 after a long period of being on an antibiotic for a strange case of adult acne. I don't believe this has anything to do with my symptoms but I figured it was worth mentioning. At any rate, soon after I went off (several days) I developed an aching sensation in my lower back, followed by widespread muscle twitching and pain, severe muscle fatigue, increased GI issues (I've always had those) light headedness, agitation (mainly due to severe discomfort), mild (occasional) headaches and joint pain. These symptoms basically have waxed and waned for the better part of 10 years, although I've seen periods of improvement, things have gotten a lot worse this past year.
I've always had anxiety issues and was on a high dose of Klonopin for quite some time, I am now attemping to come off that which is clearly making things worse, but not the cause of the problem. Benzo withdrawal is nasty and I went through that last summer but I believe it to be a seperate issue that simply aggravates my exsisting symptoms.
I've been tested for Lyme a couple times, couldn't tell you what test they used but one was through my GP, one was in the ER, both were negative. I have no history of tick bites and spent most of my life in an area where Lyme is not so common. My brain MRI was normal in 2006, I've asked for another one to no avail. The most recent neuro I saw said she did not believe my conditions to be indicative of a serious neurological illness like MS. Blood tests have all come back normal, including Thyroid. EMG of arms and legs was normal in 03 and normal two weeks ago. Lumbar MRI revealed Posterior disk bulge with annular tear at the L5/S1 level, but was unremarkable considering the symptoms I'm having. Heart tests (I've had them all except for invasive procedures) have been normal.
Only abormal finding in my neuro exam was lack of ankle reflexes, unrelated (apparently) to spinal issues.
Any input, feedback or thoughts would be appreciated!