Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Encephalitis - Seizures Again 15 years later

In September of 1995 I woke up in the middle of the night with the thought that I was being possessed by a demon and should be on the X-Files.  I was having a grand mal seizure.  After it was over I managed to drag myself across the house and get my parents up.  I had a few more that night and was taken to the ER.  It was determined that I had encephalitis - an inflammation of the brain.  The only warnings I had were that evening I had had a slight headache, sensitivity to light, and was slightly chilled, but none of that had stopped me from playing in my soccer game.  I ended up being in the hospital for four days and sent home with an Acyclovir treatment and put on some Dilantin anti-seizure medication.  I ended up being allergic to Dilantin and so they switched me to Tegretol.  I took it for six months, stopped taking it, and never had a problem since.

Until last Thursday the 23rd.  Floyd and I had both got the flu and were throwing up and just not feeling good.  The girls however were feeling fine and were not very sympathetic to our plight.  I was hesitant to call family for help because I didn't want to expose them, but by the afternoon we were getting desperate.  I called my wonderful sister and she said she could come over and take them out for a bit so we could take a nap.  So she came over and rounded up the girls and took them out, while Floyd and I crawled into bed for a nap.  I hadn't been asleep very long when all of a sudden my left foot started jerking.  While pregnant I had had some wicked leg cramps so that was both Floyd and my first thought.  But then the twitching traveled up my body till I couldn't breathe.  I was having a seizure.   I don't remember much after that, but Floyd called 911 and an ambulance came and took me to the hospital.  I had another seizure in the ambulance.

We all went back to my parents house and we spent Thursday and Friday night there.  They put me on Tegretol, but I have not responded well to it at all.  I feel sluggish, dizzy, my head hurts and in general I feel like I am walking through Jello.  I wanted to be on Tegretol versus Keppra because the literature seems to indicate that Tegretol is safe to take while breastfeeding while Keppra is definitely not recommended.  But I can't function on Tegretol and I need to function.  I am slightly frustrated because I'm not positive I need to be on drugs.  It could have just been a complete fluke, but then I cringe at every muscle twitch and am terrified of having another seizure.  I am also frustrated because I want to talk with the neurologist some more about medications, but don't have another appointment for two weeks.  At the previous appointment I was walking and talking (but not doing math very well --apparently I said that 100 take away 3 and take away 3 again was 234), but now I cannot remember anything that happened that day. 

But I called and got a prescription for Keppra.  I nursed Allie to sleep and that is the last time I'm going to nurse her.  I weaned Selena before she was ready, and felt bad for it.  I figured Allie would get the benefit of more gentle weaning.  I planned on nursing her till she was two, give or take 6 months, but she would definitely be closer to two than one.  But its not going to work that way.  She is going to be so upset when she wakes up in the middle of the night.  My poor baby.  I just hope the Keppra does work for me and this torture won't be for nothing.  And yes, I know there are plenty of benefits to weaning and some of them I am really looking forward to, but I could have been patient.  Allie is my last baby.  There was no hurry.  Then to add insult to injury I can't drive for six months.  That is going to be a huge pain.  The only good I can think about that is that hopefully I'll learn how to take the bus.

1 comment:

Jennie said...

Oh my goodness Laura! How scary. I'm so glad to hear you are doing better.