Anyone with symptoms like mine?: It started... - Meningitis Now

Meningitis Now

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Anyone with symptoms like mine?

Chopper201 profile image
4 Replies

It started with high fever, a recurring headache and red welts across my chest. I hate being ill - and hospitals - so begrudgingly went to the local hospital with my wife only to be told I had shingles and should be put in a ward immediately.

However, that hospital did not a full-time skin doctor, so we were instructed to go to another hospital nearby by taxi and where we promptly registered.

I was confirmed as having shingles but after a few days (and a lumbar puncture) another doctor confirmed I had developed viral meningitis. This meant a two-week regime of acyclovir three times a day intravenously which ruined my appetite. During this time, I couldn’t walk, had a catheter inserted full-time and struggled to pass any bowel movements.

After three weeks, I was basically booted out as the hospital was not geared for long-term fixtures and then prematurely sent home. Once home, I hopped on the scales and was horrified to see I had lost 10kgs down to 65. For the next four weeks, I struggled with headaches, not being able to go the toilet without invasive measures, chronic stomach pain and ongoing urine retention. I also could not walk without the aid of crutches as the muscle in my legs had wasted away from being immobile in hospital but I also had a funny tingling sensation from the waste down.

It has now been Week 10 since I first was diagnosed with shingles and have gone back to work for the first time. I need a walking stick to keep me balanced and my gait is still wobbly, with constant pins and needles from the waist done. I finally had the catheter removed successfully yesterday but urinal flow is still slow. Constipation remains an issue.

I have scoured the internet but have not found symptoms or an experience that is close to mine. Is there anyone out there?? Would love to hear from you!

4 Replies
Starry profile image

I empathize, though my experience differs. I had shingles and viral-meningitis but not at the same time, that sounds like a truly horrendous experience. I wonder if your vagus nerve was damaged by the virus. Google gastropareisis

I had bowel problems while I was hospitalised and needed intervention but had just had bowel shave surgery before developing the virus so I suspect it was more likely that and opiate pain relief with me. I still struggle with constipation.

I relate with the weight loss too and being released too early. I lost 8% of my body weight in 6 days though your experience sounds far worse. Later I had issues with intolerances and was diagnosed with disease related malnutrition for a while. 18 months on I am just about up to my pre illness weight.

I don't need a stick but have balance issues and dizziness along with muscle weakness photo and phonosensitivity along with other issues and have been diagnosed with ME.

Its not an easy road to recovery.

While my experience was different I hope this in some way makes you feel less alone.

Chopper201 profile image
Chopper201 in reply to Starry

Thank you for your kindly worded reply. I will Google Gastropareisis after this. Last week I finally had the catheter removed after almost three months but still not back to normal - although I’m overjoyed I can actually urinate on my own. It seems that a lot of people struggle for many months if not years after contracting the disease so I hope I am one of those whose after-effects are shorter than longer. Many thanks for sharing your experience with me :) Highly appreciated.

Oooomeooooomy profile image

I was hospitalized for two weeks for VM; I was sent home with a Foley catheter as well, as I could not void urine on my own; I was battling constipation, but that part has seemed to resolve since I've been taliking magnesium daily; the magnesium helps with nerve conduction. I had numbness and tingling from the ribs down, and it is slowly resolving, but still present in my legs a d feet. I still have the catheter (it was removed at 4 weeks but I was still unable to void, so it was placed back in me...sigh). I hope it resolves soon (it's now been almost 7 weeks) I've already suffered 1 UTI and kidney infection dur to the catheter. This whole experience has made me feel and think so differently.

Chopper201 profile image
Chopper201 in reply to Oooomeooooomy

Oh my god! I am thinking of you so much right now. Except for the kidney infection, your symptoms are exactly what I experienced. I too had the catheter reinserted at one point but urine voiding issues have been mostly resolved for the time being (drinking alcohol is a no-no). I am still battling constipation, chronic tingling in the lower half of my body and unaided Walking has finally becoming possible after 5 months. I wish you fast relief and a quick recovery - my whole worldview has changed markedly after this experience too. Thank you for sharing your experience with me :)

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