Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Sore Muscles & Headaches?

Hey everybody. I was just wondering if these two things might have a cause-effect relationship. I've still had headaches and neck aches in the year since surgery. I've wondered why I still have headaches even though the Sandostatin seems to control other symptoms so well. I had an especially tense semester at school and ended up with a really bad migraine. So I went to see a nuerologist. She would've suggested meds but I didn't want them, so she sent me to physical therapy. The stretching exercises seem helpful. The one thing that's really seemed to help is the suggestion of sleeping with a different pillow, one that's cylindrical in shape, or even rolling a towel up underneath my neck. I wonder if each night I'm extending my neck in a way that stretches my neck muscles too much, or in the wrong position, and that may be contributing to my headaches and neck aches. I do notice that when I tuck my knee under me while I'm sitting in a chair, my knee will become very sore and tender for days afterward as well. Anyone else with similar experience?

Monday, March 10, 2008

BBC- diagnosis by handshake

Handshake diagnosed brain tumour
Dr Chris Britt and Mark Gurrieri
Dr Chris Britt (left) realised Mark Gurrieri's condition straight away

A GP diagnosed a rare brain tumour just by shaking a man's hand.

Mark Gurrieri, 36, from Loughton, Essex, was working in a restaurant when a friend introduced him to his dining partner, Dr Chris Britt.

The GP said he knew something was wrong when he shook Mr Gurrieri's large, spongy feeling hand.

Mr Gurrieri underwent tests and was found to have acromegaly - caused by a tumour in the pituitary gland which leads to excess growth hormone.

The condition is seen in just three people per million, and can have serious effects if left undiagnosed.

It's so rare most GPs wouldn't have seen patients with it
Dr Chris Britt

It causes problems with vision and can lead to diabetes and blood pressure problems.

If untreated acromegaly can also cause premature death.

Mr Gurrieri thought his hands were getting bigger because of too much DIY and working in his restaurant kitchen.


He told the Ilford Recorder newspaper: "I felt good in myself up until that point, and didn't think I had a problem - just thought my conditions were down to getting older."

He immediately booked an appointment with his GP, and tests confirmed he had the condition.

In January surgeons removed most of the 2cm benign tumour growing at the base of his brain.

Mr Gurrieri, who has a seven-year-old son, must now take medication to keep the condition under control.

"My mum thinks Chris is my guardian angel," he said.

"I could have lost my sight, or I could have had a number of other ailments, so I think I owe my life to Chris - and a few meals at the restaurant."

Dr Britt, who works as a GP in Woodford Green, said he had not seen a case of acromegaly since he was a medical student working in a specialist hospital.

"It's the sort of diagnosis you might make once in a career if you're lucky. It's so rare most GPs wouldn't have seen patients with it."