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 IIH and confusion/personality changes

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chemistrygeek
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PostSubject: IIH and confusion/personality changes    Fri Aug 09, 2013 6:57 am

Hello. 

I was diagnosed with IIH a month ago. I had bacterial meningitis this past February. My headaches refused to go away after I came home from the hospital, and I had my first LP in April. The pressure was high. I had two more in July. I have basically had the severe headaches we all know and hate for five months now.  

I was put on Topamax when officially diagnosed in July, which has been awful for my memory. I can't even hold on a five minute conversation. I am cognitively pretty low functioning on that drug, and am paying a visit to my neuro tomorrow to see about switching over to Diamox. It has also had a negative effect on my maturity, normally I am 20 but act 30, now I am 20 but act 12. 

What concerns me is the personality changes I incur when my pressure is high. Now normally, I am a very kind, patient person. When my pressure is high, I am a JERK! My mom and I are quite close, but this morning I screamed at her, and I'm not sure why. I haven't done that since I was a child. The other day, I woke up with the sudden urge to take a shower at 3:30 in the morning. There was another incident where I didn't recognize the upstairs of my parents' house for a minute. 

I never actually had a MRI or CT after the pressure issues surfaced. They just thought it was safe to assume I didn't have a brain tumor because the CT scan I had when I first came to the hospital with my meningitis came out "clean". However, this was late February, and I started getting high pressure symptoms in March. 

Are the personality changes considered normal with the pressure on the brain that is associated with IIH? Am I irrational to start worrying about a frontal lobe brain tumor? 

Thanks.
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medmisfit
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PostSubject: Re: IIH and confusion/personality changes    Wed Aug 14, 2013 6:50 pm

Welcome to the group!!! I'm sorry for the late reply, we do usually try to address posts more immediately.

I would say chronic pain can definitely affect your "personality", but so can meds. Topamax gave me horrible headaches and made me down right nasty, so I'd definitely follow up with doctors. You are also in a very stressful situation, which adds to the pain. I have no doubt that your patience and tolerance is low right now.

I would suggest that you start a symptom log to track any changes, especially if you're looking to change meds. It will keep you from having to remember specifics and provide your doctors with more info. There are samples in Useful Guides and Print Outs section.

Honestly, it's not out of the ordinary for IIH to start after an episode of meningitis and having a "clean" MRI in February is pretty good if symptoms started in March. Diagnosis and treatment of IIH is tough, so just try to rest and take care of yourself. If you notice changes in vision or symptoms (especially following a med change or procedure), be sure to let the ordering physician know.

Check out the site and let us know if you have any questions. We'll do our best to answer them and help you through it!!!

Take care,
Julie
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Wylee
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PostSubject: Re: IIH and confusion/personality changes    Wed Aug 14, 2013 8:30 pm

I would voice those concerns with a doc.  If you have a gp or neurologist that listens to you, I would start there.  Let them know that you are concerned about personality changes that you don't like.  It may be the meds, it may be the pressure, but the docs need to know and investigate.
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harmony21506
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PostSubject: Re: IIH and confusion/personality changes    Fri Sep 13, 2013 3:26 pm

i have had the same thing hapen. whenever my pressure is up i turn into a crazy jerk. i am not on any medication for my ih right now, so i can safely assume it is not the meds. personally i think its just being miserable and taking it out on everyone. most people do that and you jsut cant help it most of the time. but i agree with the others if you are concerned i would keep a log and talk to your dr.
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