Angioma Caused Seizures


From:"Renee Miller" Ren1416@webtv.net
Sent: August 1, 2003

In 1998, at the age of 25, I started having strange experiences and feelings, little did I know they were seizures. Finally out on my own and independent for the first time in my life, with a promising teaching career, I did my best to ignore those strange feelings. I just thought I was a little nervous and anxious about being in a new job and in my own place for the first time but sooner or later I would feel comfortable and have the life I wanted, like I had planned.

It didn't turn out that way though, not even close. Within the next year I hated teaching because these strange feelings wouldn't go away, I was stressed out and I knew deep down something was wrong. That's when the visits to the Dr. started. I heard everything from, "you have vertigo" to "you have anxiety attacks". Then the medication began, but that was like giving an aspire to someone who's paralyzed and saying, "here ya go, now you'll be up on your feet in no time at all!" I basically threw those meds. in the trash, I knew I didn't have vertigo or anxiety attacks, I could feel it was something more serious.

Finally they sent me to see a neuro, after I broke my elbow from what turned out to be a Grand Mal seizure. We didn't know that yet at that point though. But even he was clueless, I sat there and told him everything that was happening to me and he didn't say the word 'seizure' to me once. He let me walk out that door, have an EEG a few days later, and before my next visit with him I had another Grand Mal while driving home from work one day. Knowing what I know now about seizures it was obvious that I was telling him that I may be having seizures, especially with a previous broken elbow from a GM seizure, and it angers me so much that he didn't say a word to me. I luckily survived that car accident and didn't hurt anyone else, my car was totaled and I fractured a vertebrae, which 3 yrs. later is still sore. I have that brain-dead neuro to thank for that.

I moved back home, left my job for obvious reasons, and searched for a neuro who knew what they were doing. I found one who located a cavernous angioma in my left temporal lobe, I had never heard of those before. He kept asking me if I had hit my head at some point in my life, maybe that caused it, but I haven't.

By 2001 I was having 30 seizures a month at least after the car accident, no meds were helping at all and things didn't look too good. By Jan. '02 I started tests for brain surgery and after 6 mos. of tests everything was approved and in July we went ahead and did it.

They removed the cavernous angioma exactly one year ago today and I've been seizure free exactly one year now. There were 3 surgeries altogether, but removing that angioma was the biggest one and the most important.

My life isn't back to normal again, I don't know when it ever will be. I don't want to teach again, I have no desire to after the experience I had before. My memory isn't the best, I know a lot of people say that but for a 30 yr. old I'm a little pathetic as a result of the surgery. After everything that happened within the past 5 yrs. in my own personal life there's no way to just stop having seizures and say, "I'm all better now, I think I'll go back to the life I had before." I wish I could but I can't and it makes me mad and makes me cry.

Trying to find a new path to start over a happy, healthy life for myself is my goal right now. I know I'll find it, hopefully sooner than later.

Renee Miller