View Full Version : Yet another question from me....

11-06-2005, 12:03 AM
Hi everyone!

I just found out that I have a cyst on my brain... They have told me that they can't really tell me much right now, but, I am wondering could this possibly in ANY WAY be caused by the Lupus? Does anyone know?

I'm not sure if I'll feel better if it is or isn't caused by the Lupus... I'm just curious I guess...

Anything will be helpful!


11-06-2005, 06:37 AM
Oh sweetie! I hope SaySusie can jump in - she knows so much more. I'm not sure if there's a connection or not. Anything to do with the brain is frightening - you're in my thoughts as this moves forward and is resolved.

I'm in line for an MRI in the near future as I've been feeling more brain fog than usual. Was your trek to this point because of fuzzy thinking? I liken it to a brain wrapped in cotton - all input and output has to get through the fuzz.

Keep us posted as you learn more - and I will do the same with my MRI (Hasn't been scheduled yet)

Hugs, dear, and remember we're all in this together --

11-06-2005, 11:23 AM
Thank you Hatlady :):):):):):):)

I get the fuzzy headed thing, too... But that's not what got me here... Do you ever find that with the fuzzy headedness you can THINK clearly, but not speak clearly? I often find that if I'm trying to speak to someone I can't articulate very well, and sometimes stutter (Which I've NEVER stuttered before) but, I can type or write out what I want to say fine... It's weird...

Originally, my doctor was going to set me up for a CT scan because I had been having all of these headaches, (and I don't typically get headaches) and vision problems, and shaking, and muscle weakness, and light headedness. Well, when the headaches stopped being so prevelant, (They used to be almost constant, they aren't that frequent anymore YAY!) she cancelled the CT scan, and we pretty much figured that everything was med related.

Well, I'd been having these spells where I get so light headed I felt like I was going to fall over. I attributed that to all the blood pressure medication and the diuretics I am on, so I didn't think too much of it, because I need that to keep the protein in my blood or something... I'm not really sure how it works, but it IS!

With the light headedness, sometimes I'd get dizzy, too... But nothing unbearable... Well, I guess it was two weeks ago now, I had one day where the room was spinning all day long... And then the next day I was so dizzy I was having a hard time even standing... I was at work and a co-worker saw me kind of slide down a wall to regain myself and she insisted that I call my doctor. I called my doc and asked what I could do. She told me to go to the ER and get a CT... Which was when they found the cyst.

Since then, I've still been dizzy, not NEARLY to the extent that I was that day, but more than just light headed. Also, I had one day this past week, where all day long I felt like I was going to pass out... It was really weird.

So, this past Friday I went to the Neurologist and he basically spent an hour and a half telling me he couldn't tell me anything until I get an MRI.(which he has to set up, still) The other thing he told me was that the only way to get rid of it was through surgery... Eeep. So, I'm hoping it's not going to come to that...

Keep me posted on your MRI! Have you ever had one before? Is it as scary as they say it is? I hope that your "brain fog" is something easily fixed!! Let me know how it all goes, and thank you again for your good thoughts! I think I need all the GOOD thoughts I can get! I know I'm having enough bad ones to last for a while!! LOL!!!

11-06-2005, 11:45 AM
Hi Solesinger;
My research indicated that there are different types of brain cysts. First, let me tell what I learned about cysts in general.
Cysts, thin-walled collections of fluid, may form within the ventricles or in the brain itself. They may be caused by infections or tumors, but in many cases the cause is unknown. Because people with Lupus have abnormalities in their immune systems that predispose them to develop infections, they may be susceptible to brain cysts or leptomeningitis (fluid in sac surrounding the brain), although this rarely happens from what I've learned.
Brain cysts may be asymtpomatic and are often noted on CT or MRI scans performed for other reasons. In some cases, cysts may cause headaches, weakness, seizures or hydrocephalus (he abnormal buildup of cerebrospinal fluid in the ventricles of the brain).

Arachnoid cysts are the most common type of brain cyst. They are fluid-filled sacs appearing in one of the three layers of tissue covering the central nervous system. Brain cysts which causes symptoms were traditionally treated with open brain surgery or shunting. Endoscopy now provides a minimally invasive alternative to treat these disorders. Cysts can either be removed endoscopically, or holes can be made to drain the cyst internally into the brain's nomral fluid pathways.
Small cysts are usually asymptomatic and are discovered only incidentally. Large cysts may cause cranial deformation or macrocephaly (enlargement of the head), producing such symptoms as headaches, seizures, hydrocephalus (excessive accumulation of cerebrospinal fluid), increased intracranial pressure, developmental delay, and behavioral changes. Other symptoms may include hemiparesis (weakness or paralysis on one side of the body) and ataxia (lack of muscle control). With treatment most individuals with arachnoid cysts do well.

Colloid cysts are another type of cyst which grows inside the ventricles and may block the pathway of spinal fluid. Small colloid cysts may be observed without treatment in some cases. If the cyst is large or is causing headaches or other symptoms, treatment is usually necessary. Open brain surgery is the most common treatment for colloid cysts. In some cases, however, cysts may be removed endoscopically.
Colloid cysts compose 0.5 - 1% of intracranial tumors. They arise from cells which are so-called "neuroepithelial" meaning that they arise from primitive cells during development. Colloid cysts, usually located in the anterior portion of the third ventricle, can block the outflow pathways for the cerebrospinal fluid and cause water in the brain (hydrocephalus). Some colloid cysts are also located in the septum pelucidum.
The treatment of a colloid cyst may consist of bilateral VP shunting, but this will not take care of the affect of the cyst on the hypothalamus which it is against. Therefore it may be necessary to remove the cyst. The rationale for removing the cyst is to avoid shunt dependency, to eliminate the risk to the hypthalamic cardiovascular center as well as to eliminate the risk of tumor progression. The surgical options include an open craniotomy going through the corpus callosum of the brain. Also possible are stereotactic drainage procedures and ventriculoscopic procedures, the only problem with which is getting a total removal of the cyst.

I hope that this information has been helpful to you. Let me know if you need anything more. With early treatment, the prognosis is good for both types of cysts!

Peace and Blessings

11-06-2005, 11:48 AM
I know what you mean about the fuzziness impacting speech but not wirting - I SO prefer interacting via e-mail lately!
My fingers walk
better than the mouth talks... :roll:

I have had a brain MRI once. But it wasn't for a "reason." How's that for a statement that needs explanation :?: :!: I used to work at a hospital. Years ago they got a new MRI and needed volunteers to help them calibrate it. Volunteers as in people willing to get an MRI. So I was a test subject - MRI of my brain. The pictures were FASCINATING! and it proved that I have a brain. :roll: And also that I cannot deny that I have my father's nose. (...sigh...)

The MRI itself, if you end up going to a "closed" one like I was in, is a tight tube. they will make sure your head can't move, probably some sandbags or such on either side, etc. THe tube is open at both ends, it is light, there's plenty of airflow. It is close, the tube feels to be about 3" in front of your nose. But it wasn't scary, since there is light and air.

When they were doing the calibrations, I kept dozing off, :sleeping: which the techs found hilarious. THe sound really didn't bother me. I guess (back then) the test is supposed to take about 45 minutes, they had me in there for about 1.5 hours since they were testing stuff. It might even be faster than 45 minutes now.

Some MRI's now are "open" - more like that CAT scan you had. In any case, it will be an interesting experience, and I'm looking forward to looking inside my head - hopefully I'll still see a brain in there, and if it turns out to be packed in cotton, I'll know what the problem is!

11-06-2005, 11:50 AM
Wow, thanks SaySusie! I was "crafting" my reply when you entered yours.

11-06-2005, 12:08 PM

11-06-2005, 01:24 PM
Saysusie and Hatlady,

Thank you BOTH so much for the information!

The neurologist DID say something about different types of cysts and that he wouldn't know what it was without the MRI...

If I'm reading right you're saying that the cyst could be lupus related, but just because I am more suseptible to infection? Meaning I shouldn't worry that the lupus could be attacking my brain, as well? Or am I reading wrong?

About the MRI, I've been told that even if you aren't claustrophobic that you feel like you are in the MRI tube thingy... Did you find that?

Thank you again for all of your help and support... The whole thing just makes me kind of nervous...


11-06-2005, 01:48 PM
I'm sure claustrophobia could be an issue for some, the tube is tight. I just calmed my breathing and let myself know that this was OK. For me it worked. I was relaxed and the experience was fine.

I think if you go into it knowing that it will only be for a little bit, and that you're safe, you'll be fine. The light and the airflow make a lot of difference too - if it were stuffy and dark - YIKES :!: :shock: But it isn't.

YOu also may get scheduled at an open MRI - then it is just a ring thing that is really not tight at all.