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Anyone Develop Conversion Disorder After Long Term PTSD?

I have suffered from PTSD since I was a toddler (34 years) due to childhood sexual, physical, emotional and verbal abuse from my father. The abuse ended when I was a teenager but I blocked out almost all of it to the point that I have no memories of my childhood. My memory is slowly closing in and I can't remember hardly anything clearly, even things that happened today. Nothing is sharp in my mind.

About 7 months ago I woke up with symptoms of a stroke (confusion, cognitive impairment, pincer grasp weakness, imbalance, loss of memory) but my regular MRI of the brain was negative. I went in today to have another MRI done, this time with and without contrast. Since then I have gotten worse and developed other symptoms such as nystagmus (eyes shaking involuntarily) and times when I cannot move my arms and calves. I sleep a lot, even when I have things I want to get done. I must also mote that I have two autoimmune diseases as well that have just been discovered, systemic lupus and Sjogren's Syndrome. These are verified through blood work and other testing, but the neurological symptoms seem to have no other explanation other than conversion disorder. For those of you that don't know, conversion disorder is when PTSD manifests itself physically so you are sick but with no physical reason.

I have a little trouble believing that my symptoms that don't seem to have an explanation could be from my own mind. I am starting therapy in 2 weeks after many years of avoiding talking about the issues. I am afraid to begin but know I have to. Anyone else develop conversion disorder after long term PTSD?
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First Helper TheOddGirl
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replied February 6th, 2013
I have been having MS-type symptoms and have bounced around to 3 different specialists now, and had 3 MRIs done as well as electro testing. There is not enough evidence to constitute a demyelination disease, though my original neurologist is surprised. The second neurologist told me he thinks I have conversion disorder (which I did not know anything about that at the time and seeing as he knows very little about my past I am surprised at his seemingly insightful knowledge about my psyche) and recommended intense psychotherapy. Nothing like leaving the neurologist's office with THAT repeating in your head. I have gotten counsel since then, as well as trying to ignore my symptoms (not sure how helpful that will be in the long run), but my big toe is still numb, I have tremors, facial twitching, heat and stinging pain, occasional blindness in one or both eyes, seizure-like episodes as well as hallucinations (look up AWS, it is WILD). I am also told the symptoms may be because of silent migraines, which I can agree with mostly. I am a 31 year old, attractive female, and no one would know that I struggle with this, except my family. It has emerged in the last 2-3 years. My blood work is normal. Another doctor says that it could be the beginning of something like MS and to keep getting evaluated and keep a journal as these things can surface in the bloodwork later.

As far as PTSD goes, I do not yet have a diagnoses with that, so I cannot tell you specifically. I do have a lot of traumatic experiences I have been working through for years, so I wouldn't be surprised if PTSD is the outcome.

I do know that either way, it is important to support our stressed out bodies with a healthy diet and tons of b vitamins as the nervous systems depend on it. Since I have been on a gluten and dairy free diet my symptoms have diminished in intensity, though they are still amount of symptoms I get is increasing. If I wander from my diet, I immediately get joint pain and stomach pain (please note that the blood work came back negative for celiac). It may be worth looking into an "anti-inflammatory diet" to help your body cope and heal more quickly. Doctors will tell you that restricting your diet can be unhealthy, but I say, if it helps deal with a problem they cannot, it cant be any worse than doing nothing, and might even diminish or eliminate the need for so much therapy.
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