Says No to MS Diagnosis
MY DIFFICULT JOURNEY
This has been removed from the website. May 2003
It all started in January of 2001 when I would stay home from work due to my headaches. I could not stand up because the pounding in my head was so bad. I just wanted to close my eyes and fall asleep. That's when I knew there was something definitely wrong.
I used to be so energetic, but now I kept getting headaches. I used to be very active prior to my illness. I would go to the gym everyday for at least two hours. I would get home late and go to work the next morning. When I started having these headaches I lost all my energy. I wouldn't have them for just a day or two, but for three or four days at a time. I would go to the doctor and he'd tell me, "You're a healthy kid, go home! Take Tylenol."
Then I got a new symptom of tonsillitis. Every time I had a headache my tonsils would get infected. After being on antibiotics every two weeks for nine months, my doctor decided to remove them. The doctor thought maybe my headaches were due to my tonsils.
After having my my tonsillectomy in October of 2001, the headaches remained. My family doctor didn't know what to do for me anymore. He sent me to a neurologist; he indeed noticed something wrong with me. He noticed I had right optic neuritis. Even though I was not in any pain or having any visual disturbances he rushed me to the hospital to get a CAT scan of my head. He thought it might be a brain tumor.
I started crying my eyes out. He told me to jump in a cab and leave my car behind and just go. On my way to the hospital I called my boyfriend and parents. They met me there at the hospital and kept reassuring me nothing was wrong. I can't explain what went through my mind other than the thought that I was going to die.
I had just finished school for Dental Assisting three years before this happened, and I had been working since as a dental assistant. I was really looking forward to working my way up in life and to having my own home and family.
As soon as I got home from my head scan the phone rang. It was my neurologist. My heart fell to the floor thinking something was wrong. He just wanted to tell me that it was not a tumor, but he wanted me to get an MRI done in a few weeks since it is more detailed. I was sent to do many tests including an evoked potentials test. This is a test of the brainstem that could rule out many diseases. I was also checked for hearing and balance. The technician would say letters and I would have to repeat after her. In the balance test they would have me to lie down and they would put water in my ears and I'd feel like I was spinning.
I'm not sure what these tests were for but what I do know is that I never had problems with my ears and now they hurt me.
After five MRI's we were back to square one because we still did not know the cause of the headaches. The MRI'S showed inflammation of the medulla in the brain and three lesions. I had done two lumber punctures. Ouch that hurt!
What I kept telling myself was that God does not give me more than what I can handle. He is with me every step of the way, guiding me. All during these three months of suffering with headaches, going to work and being miserable, the girls I worked with and dentist were great. They helped me as much as they could.
I kept popping pills- Tylenol, Advil, or anything for headaches. I've never taken so many pills. The day of my 24th birthday in March of 2002 was the day that changed my life. I started seeing funny; I didn't know what was wrong. It seemed like it was double but I was new to all of this. My co-workers told me to go to the doctor. So off I went to see the eye specialist. All he told me was "Sandra, you're too young for this and if it doesn't go away I'll give you glasses!"
Can you believe this? Off I went home driving with one eye closed and one eye open. When both eyes were open is when I would see double. I finally I made it home and I was so tired. I fell asleep and in the morning there was a big surprise waiting for me.
Now everything was double! I had no balance; I was having problems with my speech; and my left side was numb. I called my boyfriend and he took my mom and me to the hospital. My dad had left to go to work.
The doctors saw me right away. They thought it was a stroke or brain tumor or meningitis. But after more head scans and a lumber puncture they ruled that out. They kept me there for a week with no treatment. Then they thought it was Multiple Sclerosis but a rare kind of it. They didn't know if it was a good or bad kind.
I had amazing friends. The nurses were amazed that my room was always full of friends. They had even decorated my room very tropical with fruit and palm trees.
My mom started hearing that amalgam in the mouth could cause problems if you have MS. She told me to have the fillings removed. But we really didn't know the proper way to have this done. So in April 2002 I had my mercury fillings removed. My dentist was aware of the reason why I wanted to remove my fillings and yet failed to use the right protection. I knew at least she should have used a dental dam, but she didn't. It was only five amalgam fillings but it was enough to worsen my condition. But you just trust the dentists. I was soon to find out that it is worse removing amalgam than putting it in!
For a couple weeks I thought my eyes were getting normal again. One day I even drove my car. But it only lasted one day. The next day double vision was back and this time it was really bad! So I was rushed to the hospital with my second attack! I could not walk up the stairs because my balance was so out of control. I had speech problems and I even had a hard time swallowing! This second attack happened shortly after removing the mercury fillings.
I had a CD of my MRI'S with me so they could compare them again with new tests. I did a MRI, lumber puncture and tests, tests, and more tests! They could still not tell me it was Multiple Sclerosis. They thought it was but they were not sure.
Well they gave me three days of steroids intravenously. After a week they sent me home. They wanted me to go see the MS specialist and thank goodness I had a friend that worked at that hospital or else it would have been at least six weeks before I saw him.
After seeing the specialist he gave me three more days of steroids IV's and then prednisone. It helped me tremendously, but was not my cure. He told me it was a rare kind of MS. But I still do not believe him. I will not accept this illness in any way, shape or form.
I am so lucky to have a family and my boyfriend and his sister and so many friends. They were there for me every step of the way. I had one friend that helped me take a shower and she took me outside in the wheelchair while I was in the hospital. I was briefly confined to a wheel chair while I was in the hospital for that week, but by the time I got back home I had my ability to walk back.
In June of 2002 I finally went to an Intergrative Medicine doctor that a friend referred me to. It's about an hour's drive but it is well worth the hour. He asked me what I did for a living and I said I was a dental assistant. He told me to find a new job!
I explained my symptoms and he told me he knew what I had......Mercury Toxicity! Mercury in dental fillings can cause brain damage. I was so happy to know someone out there could help me, but of course I had some doubts.
I did not know of Health Canada's recommendation for removing amalgam. I had been in dental school for two years and none of my teachers ever mentioned that mercury poisoning could happen to me. At first I did not believe it myself, but since I've been in treatment to remove mercury, I have only been getting better.
My Intergrative Medicine doctor did a hair elements test and in two weeks I got the results and it showed a high level of arsenic, bismuth, cadmium, and lead as well as mercury. They are all very toxic and poisonous. He put me on a strict diet of no tropical fruit, no canned food, no fish and many vitamins. He also put me on heavy metal chelation therapy because it improves blood circulation, removes pollutants that damage body cells, and enhances the body's immune system. Chelation takes a very long time but it is well worth the wait.
My brother got married in July of 2002. It was a terrible day for me as I had a headache! The cornea of my right eye was not visible and the pupil was shifted over to the left corner. Looking at me you could tell I was ill. I ruined their pictures. My faith got me through the day.
For nine months I was on intravenous DMPS chelation with my Intergrative Medicine doctor. I'm now on oral chelation with DMSA. I did a urine analysis challenge test and many of the toxic metals have been removed since I have been on DMPS chelation. IV chelation works a lot quicker so at first he suggested to do chelation intravenously but now that I have a lot less toxic metals he put me on oral medicine.
Friends and I have done much research and in fact I have many more symptoms of mercury poisoning than MS.
My family doctor does not believe it at all. The MS specialist was really bitter to me when I told him if it could be mercury toxicity. He does not believe it for a second. Well, what I do know is that something is helping me tremendously and as I've told all my doctors before, I will be a walking miracle! I was not going to accept this illness as MS because deep in my heart faith heals and I am not about to give up on life. I have so much to live for and many people to help. The doctors will be amazed and maybe they will start believing in mercury toxicity.
Right now I'm still not working. I usually go to PhysioTherapy, where I can run again. This has been a great help to me. I had a very hard time running because my balance was really off.
I still have double vision and I may need eye surgery but it is still too early to determine. My eye specialist is very surprised that my nerve in the eye is not damaged. It is just a weak muscle. She does not understand because most of her MS patients that she sees have the nerve damaged. It's because it is not MS!
I was ready to give up on life, and on everything, but at a very young age something stopped me....my friends, family and boyfriend who never gave up on me. They are the ones that are pulling me through this. It has been the help of all doctors and my faith that is leading to my recovery.....FOREVER. I will be the girl I was before that never stopped. This illness has only brought me closer to my friends, family and to God.
I've learned life is too short and live it to the fullest. You never know what tomorrow brings. It's a mystery. But there will always be sadness and happiness and we have to take it as it comes.This experience has only made me grow and I hope to help many others.
If anybody is interested for any further information please e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I will help you in any way I can. Take care and God Bless!
Sandra David lives in Toronto, Canada and continues to improve from mercury toxicity. Her Intergrative Medicine doctor practices in Markham, Ontario.
Dental Assistants are in great danger from mercury toxicity due to breathing mercury vapor as dentists drill out amalgam without the proper ventilation and breathing apparatus for assistants. See http:www.mercurypoisoned.com/dental_personnel for the dangers to dental personnel from mercury. If the assistant also has amalgam in her mouth, then the exposure is increased. If you are a dental assistant and want to be better protected from vapor, contact a biological dentist or the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology at http://www.iaomt.org to find out how you can be better protected. It would also be wise to do regular detox with the help of an ACAM doctor. If your employer refuses to safely rid the office of mercury vapor and help you to have optimum protection from mercury vapor, I would be looking for a new job.
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© by Sandra David, May 2003
This information is provided for educational purposes only, and does not replace a personal consultation with the health care professional of your choice.