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Shakes Right After Exercise (Even Maybe Seizures)


Friedbrain
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I am working on getting a diagnosis so this may or may not be dysautonomia. I have had a variety of neurological and peripheral symptoms over the years, but having problems exercising....well, that's new and scary! If anyone has any input, I'd really appreciate it.

I have been exercising for about four years now, three or more times a week with the same routine: eliptical for 15 min followed by about 15-20 min weights. It usually made me feel great, worked out my stress, helped me. Lately, over the last few months, I started noticing I was a bit shaky after and craving popcorn...then realized it was the salt that was helping with the slightly shaky feelings. So I started adding full packets (2x) electrolytes to my water while working out, for the sodium; took care of my shakiness, no more popcorn cravings after.

Then I went thru some stress, noticed tachycardia, went to the cardiologist, ended up on this heart monitor. Needless to say, by the time I got the heart monitor, the tachycardia was gone (still having nighttime heart racing, but that's old and ongoing, and different). However, I had been noticing an increased dizziness after working out, while driving home. Then, I worked out last week without any addition to my water, in order to (my hypotheses) invoke an episode for my heart monitor. I left the gym, felt okay in the car, started to drive away, then became dizzy, followed by my heart pounding, that transitioned into what was possibly seizures (I had already pulled over)(had them a month ago during the daytime-ER doc called them seizures with no testing that I recall)-all over ballistic type body shaking for about 30 min or more (dh was able to bring me electrolyte/water to drink). My right hand and arm and my left hand went tingly afterwards (?).

Today, the first time since then that I was brave enough to go back to the gym, I had only half a packet of electrolytes in my water (the heart monitor did not catch the heart racing part of the last episode because of a malfunction, so I thought I'd try to achieve a moderate episode this time). What I noticed was that I was fine while working out. Heart going, breathing hard. When I went to get my stuff, though, my heart did not slow down. It was beating hard. I tried slow breathing but only got dizzy and shaky and had to sit down. Still beating hard. I had to leave (gym closing) so I took my stuff to car. After sitting again, not too dizzy but heart still beating hard and a little shaky. I was able to drive home (back roads, small town); when I got home (maybe ttl time 30 min) I couldn't feel my heart anymore but my body was "vibrating" (not large shakes) and both my hands were tingly (right worse than left(?)).

Any thoughts on why this is happening? The sympathetic nervous system didn't shut down, maybe? Thanks for any input on any part of this.

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Hey, really sorry to hear your having alot of issues at the moment. Dont worry though this lot here are sure to help you find a possibile cause there all great here. In my opinion these do not sound like seizures. I suffer from Seizures of a cardiac origin, these sound like body is deficient in something or that your body is trying to conpensate for some cardiac issues you might be having after your workout. Im not sure if you said you had the cardiac monitor on while you were working out? maybe you should ask your doctor for a stress test that maybe hold some very valuble information as to what is going on I would certainly suggest maybe some routine blood testing and then finally maybe A Head up Tilt Test. This may very well lead to some sort of a diagnosis. If you and your doctor are presistent then maybe an EEG or something along those lines to rule out neurological Seizures Disorders.

Best of luck I hope I was of some help at least ;-)

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I don't have any answers for you, but I get this too. If I walk longer than 15 minutes, my hands and feet will go numb. I actually shake badly during exercise as well. My theory is that it has to do with all the catecholamines that exercise stirs up. Beta Blockers work well for the tremor, but I can't take a high enough dose to take it all away under physical exertion. After exercise, I'll get crazy narrow pulse pressure as well: my systolic will drop, but my diastolic will stay up, so I've had an 87/80 reading before.

Try an extended cool-down and then lie down for a bit after you get home. Once I exercise, I'm done for the day.

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Jonathonireland, thank you for your input. I agree that I'm not sure they are seizures (or primarily neuro origin), which adds to my concern because if something else is going on, I don't want it just passed off as a *shrug* seizure (which the ER doc had done a month prior). What I didn't add, cuz I was rambling on, is that I DO have a seizure disorder. 8 ys ago I ended up in the ER with status epilepticus-seizures where I was unconscious for a long time. I had breakthrough seizures twice, a month apart, at the same time of night: hence, nocturnal catamenial (right before my period) epilepsy. I continued having minor episodes periodically (exacerbated by daytime stress) at the same time over the years: woke up with racing heart, heat flash and pressure in head, followed by all-over body shaking. Since the timing was all so similar to the status epilepticus episode, it was always assumed to be seizures and the neuros have treated them (even the now-daytime episodes) as such. I hope that makes sense. They never did discover the cause (or the reason for all the other MS like symptoms which also, coincidentally, fall under autonomic control....).

But knowing what I know now, I'm wondering if they are actually secondary to dysautonomia or some kind of blood pressure dysfunction. That's what I'm trying to get answers to. Unfortunately, this kind of question is out of my neuros' range of knowledge; and even my endocrinologist's, which is why I'm seeing this new cardio who is familiar with the disorder.

Firewatcher, thank you for your thoughts. It makes sense, and I've been thinking about that. I generally have low blood pressure, though, and I'm so afraid of bottoming out. In fact, I used to take xanax for the middle-of-the-night shakes/seizures but I started feeling so weak afterwards-like my heart was barely beating and this was before I knew about all this stuff and that didn't seem logical-that I got scared of even xanax. I have had that very low pulse pressure that you talk about, too (when I woke up in the middle of the night with a racing heart. I wanted to take my blood pressure at the gym yesterday when I was feeling so awful, but they didn't have one.

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There is a type of rare epilepsy that causes autonomic type seizures its very rare though. Also I they diagnosed me with epilepsy before they found the true cause on the HUTT. The fact you had epilepsy tells me that maybe the Electrical bursts could have damaged the autonomic region of brain which has left you with dysautonomnia. especially the fact you have suffered status epilepticus I mean that almost always causes brain damage! I think you would certainly benefit from MRI scanning and maybe a PET scan some plasma prolactin blood levels before and after work out and also some telemitry ECG monitoring. I couldnt possible give an opinion as to what might be going on unless we had some solid medical examination ya know. sorry for the spelling and also sorry for the whole medical look on this I did 2 years nuring studies its kinda a passion of mine. ;-)

I think others should comment on this topic and give opinions I can only imagine how confussed and scared you are.

Im here for you though and so is everyone else.

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I had known for a really long time that things were not quite right with me, especially after exercising or any type of strenuous physical effort really. I was lucky enough to have a stress test done. You know the famous treadmill test? Mmmhmm. Well, that's when they realized this was not just in my head.

The cardiologist had to stop it because things got too bad. Actually, the funniest thing... The nurse took my heart rate before I took even got prepped for the test and she got really worried. She refused to be left alone with me so the cardiologist had to stay. Hehehe. My heart rate was way high, I turned pale and my lips turned blue, and I had the shakes. Of course, they rushed to check my saturation but that was fine. I didn't make it through to the end of the test. The doctor did push a bit further than the nurse wanted but it really revealed what he wanted apparently. Anyway, since then, I have had my dysautonomia diagnosis. He pieced together the missing links.

So yeah, physical exersion? No fun. I'm currently working on an exercise plan but I will have to take breaks every few minutes. I cannot do more than that as the beta-blocker can only do so much.

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I'd like to add a different view. Since I have a long history with low blood sugar, I'm so "aware" of clusters of signs/symptoms. It's just a thought.

Exercising is notorious for lowering blood sugar. Diabetics even lower their insulin dose if they plan on exercising. If you start out lowish/normal to begin with, it could be going lower. If not corrected, you could experience seizures. If your body corrects the low, it will be with a cascade of adrenaline hormones, with all of its wonderful effects <_< . Do you recall if your electrolyte water had any sugar in it? The popcorn would have helped the low blood sugar.

Not saying you have it, just saying it could happen. It could easily be checked by checking your blood glucose before and then again after(or at symptoms) you workout.

Even your nighttime symptoms of heat flash, shaking, etc. sound like a low glucose.

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I have had POTS for several years now-being treated with Zebeta, Clonodine, lots of extra salt and water-with variable success. A year ago I went to a neurologist for neurologic complaints and after an abnormal 72 hour EEG, she told me that I had left temporal lobe epilepsy. When I started taking anti seizure meds (Keppra), my POTS symptoms improved dramatically. If you do some research on temporal lobe epilepsy, you will find that it can cause autonomic symptoms. My autonomic MD thinks my POTS is caused by the epilepsy. My neurologist is not as convinced.

So I guess my point is that, some types of seizure activity can cause some of your symptoms. I suggest finding a good epileptologist. And do a web search for temporal lobe epilepsy and see if it seems to fit your symptoms.

But the previous poster makes a good point about hypoglycemia causing your sympotoms.

Good luck finding a solution to your symptoms.

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Trainsboysmomrocks, I hear ya about working out. Since my last two workouts (over a two week period) were so scary, I am now afraid to go again. I skipped twice this week. I see the cardio on Friday-not sure how much he'll help but I will at least get some input since he will have cardiac data from those events.

Gackedo, you may be right about temporal lobe involvement. I was in the hospital over xmas after having my status epilepticus seizures, and when I came home (after 4 days) I had no emotional memories. It was SO odd, looking around at my neighborhood, at my house, at the presents I'd gotten the kids, and felt like a visitor who had been there only once before. Familiar but no attachment or emotion. But I don't (didn't then, anyway) have an inherently unstable brain. Since my neuro at the time didn't know the reason for my seizures, I went to an epilepsy expert, who put me into the hospital for a 48hr VEEG. No problems. Well, away from the kids, no stress or movement, reading in bed for two days.... So the guy told me I didn't have seizures. My neuro had a good laugh over that, since she had seen me in the ER when I was unconscious seizing. Over time, it became clear that my seizures occurred during very specific times-right before my period, in the middle of the night.

Jonathonireland, the episodes I call "partial seizures", in the middle of the night, seem like they could be autonomic to me: heart racing, feeling I'm gonna throw up, heat flash, shaking... It makes sense that there could have been some brain damage :( Now that episodes are invading my waking hours.....it becomes not only scarier, but more crucial that I control them. If they ARE seizures and I'm having them during the daytime, I could lose my driver's license! So I'm trying to understand the WHY. Blood pressure too low (why?), glucose too low (Why? like someone said, the body should manufacture glucose in response to it getting low) heart problem (or autonomic control of heart? and why?)....

Thank you for everyone's input!

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Friedbrain, please keep us posted re what you find. I find the things we have in common interesting. Whatever's wrong with me is also much worse pre-menstrually and I was also having odd episodes like you describe at night - I wondered if they might be a kind of seizure.

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Thanks, Sara4. I went back to the cardiologist today, the one that is familiar with dysautonomia (vs my neuro and endo who have been treating me for a while....). My heart monitor does not show arhythmias (sp?), which I didn't think it would. He said he thinks I have dysautonomia and recommended up to 6g of salt a day (and water), spread throughout. He thinks the episodes after exercise are because of this. He said that what was happening was that the water doesn't stay in me. My blood pressure drops, brain perfusion drops, which could even result in seizures. Makes sense to me.

He also thinks I'm hypersensitive to adrenaline (which I agree with, simply based on my reaction at the dentist's! but other times, I've noticed that, as well), so I should consider seeing a doc for a prescription for an anti-anxiety that would reduce adrenaline released (?). I get the concept, just have never heard of it worded that way (and I've taken a pharmacology class before). He said it's not that he's saying I'm an anxious person, but that my body over-responds to adrenaline released just like it's released for everyone. And that by taking an anti-anxiety, I would "smooth out" the body's physiological responses and make it less likely that I would have adrenaline-induced episodes. Like I said, this makes sense conceptually. Does anyone here take a med that does that with adrenaline? Most work through serotonin or norepinephrine, but I suppose they indirectly could affect adrenaline. I will have to research that.

So, although I skipped working out again today, I feel very hopeful that it is something I will feel confident in trying again next week. Having him lay out steps I can take to try to get my health under control.....well, it helps a lot!!!

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