Does anyone have problems with balance

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by emah, Jun 27, 2008.

  1. emah

    emah Member

    Hi everyone,

    I was justwondering does anyone have problems with balance. Sometimes it looks like I am drunk. I have to take my cane with me everywhere now.

    I'm wondering if it is the meds or is this part of FM too?
  2. CockatooMom

    CockatooMom New Member

    Yes, I have problems with balance and walking into walls and other things. But it's never gotten so bad that I needed a cane. I think a lot of us with FM have vertigo. Or maybe you have an inner ear thing going on? It could be either.

  3. margo60

    margo60 New Member

    Hi Emah,

    Most of the time I'm not very sure on my feet and I'm very aware of it and being careful.

    I don't have vertigo ... it's mostly like my feet are being clumsy and the rest of my body just follows.

    I notice it mostly on my bad days .... which have been a lot lately.

  4. sydneysider

    sydneysider Member

    Balance may be caused by meds(check for listed side effects), or can be caused by something else. May just be FM.

    My balance problem was eventually found to be vestibular (ear) damage. I also found that I have a mild hypermobility problem, which causes the body position messages going to the brain to be not as good as 'normals'.

    You can try a drug called stematil. You can also find vestibular exercises on the internet, if you want to try them. These usually make things worse before any improvement. I also recommend doing some mild leg strengthening exercises for your legs.

    Hope things go well for you.
  5. k5334

    k5334 New Member

    I do have balance problems. When I walk a straight line from car to store, it feels like something is pulling me to one side. I'm not dizzy as in the room is spinning but I just don't feel normal all the time. It makes me feel a little unsteady.
  6. DeborahLynn

    DeborahLynn Member

    I have terrible balance problems since I got ME/CFS and FMS, and I find that my cane is a HUGE help. I try to take it everywhere with me.

    god bless!

  7. Leaknits

    Leaknits New Member


    Yes! There I am, standing on a totally level floor, and my feet start this "walking backward" something, with the result that if someone doesn't catch me, boom!, down I go.

    It's getting to where I don't like to go out into what I capitalize as The World without my home-helper because she is very careful not to get too far from me...and is strong enough to catch me before I hit the floor.

    As usual with questions I bring up with dr, he seems to think it's amusing. Hmph, HE should live in this body that doesn't work very well and hurts practically 24/7 ---- and then have to deal with a dr such as he is.

    Oh, dozens of curse words, I just read what I wrote and yes, I'm feeling sorry for myself. So?

    To go from worst to I don't know what's worse than worst, a neighbor just came over, pantingly eager to tell me all about something called eft tapping and how there's a course which "only" costs somewhere around $100.

    Uncountable days ago, I gave this neighbor a copy of the Letter To People Without CFIDS, and circled the paragraph that (paraphrasing, sorry) says to please not insist I try every idea that comes down the pike.

    I wish she would READ the thing! On the other hand, maybe not. Another person said, "Well, if you don't want to learn about and try things that could help you, you must not want to get well."

    Did someone go and invent The Cure and only told Ms Well If You Don't Want To Learn?

    If it wouldn't hurt my hands and take too much energy, I feel like slapping these non-listeners.

    Please forgive my whine and (joke) yes, I'd like some cheese with my whine.

  8. monicaz49

    monicaz49 New Member

    My neurologist really thought I had MS, since I also have heat sensitivity, nausea, fatigue, etc. but I do not.

    I have many many symptoms, but balance has been one of the top on my list of the most scary, confusing, debilitating issues for me.

    I am in my home nearly all day. The reason for this is because of a few different symptoms, but mainly due to the balance. Its not vertigo (although i get that here and there) its just an inability to stand/walk without having to consciously monitor and pay attention to it. I feel like this problem is in my it feels out of whack, like sort of a vibration feeling, slightly blurry vision here and there...and a dull pressure in my head. I feel like its not my body but an equalibrium/head thing.

    When I do go out of the house i walk fast. People ask me why i walk so fast if i have bad balance. I explain my body as being like a motorcycle....if i go fast....ill stay upright, but once i go sloooooow its like walking a feels unstable.

    Sorry you have this too. I also noticed its even worse when i wear sandals or shoes that arent supportive. It just adds to the balance problem.
  9. Missizzy

    Missizzy New Member

    Balance problems are one of my greatest challenges. I must hold onto things to move about the house and am in a wheelchair on the rare occasion I go out. I also have a cane and a walker. Remember, Emah, that a cane will never break your fall so be careful. Four years ago, I moved like the wind and hardly ever sat down! Just like Monica, I am always unbalanced (yes, I look sloshed) but don't always experience vertigo. Vertigo hits me only once a month or so and that is the sensation of serious spinning. The rest of the time, I just don't know where my body is in space.I can't walk fast, though, to save my life. Shuffling with my totally flat Chinese slippers with straps is the best I can manage. Thank goodness they come in pretty colors.

    I've done all the vestibular exercises and they help a bit, I guess. I think, though, that my imbalance is going to be permanently "off" as the Mayo Clinic confirmed. I NEVER had a bit of this before my sudden onset and then it was just a steady and gradual degeneration.I think my continuing ear pain and tremor are also connected.

    Just wondering, is there anyone out there who has extreme trouble walking up ramps of any sort? I can slowly but successfully climb steps but ramps stop me in my tracks. The doctors at the Mayo were puzzled. When I try to walk uphill in any sort of fashion, I fall or stumble. I feel as if I were trying to climb a sheer cliff. My husband has to wrap his strong arm around my waist and literally drag me up even the gentlest incline.

    One observation I've had is that I do much better in small and tight spaces. I was shocked at how well I managed in the motor home we bought for the Mayo trek. It's snug enough that I can hold on anywhere and even manage to prepare meals as I can stand in one spot, leaning into the counter, and work. I very rarely get to go out to a store but I've learned that book stores and small libraries work best for me. The aisles are usually straight and narrow, the lighting usually natural to some degree, and it's quiet. I just wither when put in a cavernous, large, or noisy space. That's sure to bring on a crash every time.

    So, I'm not really sure that the imbalance issue is related to FM or ME or a different subset entirely. Will we ever find out?


  10. marti_zavala

    marti_zavala Member

    But I may be wrong. I was Sudden onset CFIDS in '99 with no FMS and no balance issues. Then relapse in 2003, I developed FMS and slowly the balance issue is getting worse.

    I now walk with a cane when out until I can get to a motorized wheelchair (in a store). I switched bedrooms and use the narrow hallway to walk. I prefer flat and do very poorly with a cluttered walkway or uneven ground.

    I fall to the left rear only, though. Not backwards or to right.

    Probably from head injuries when young.

  11. texangal81

    texangal81 New Member

    I'm constantly banging into walls and running in to people. I can't walk side-by-side with someone, I list too far to the port side and run them off the sidewalk. I'm not really dizzy, I just seem to list and trip a lot.......
  12. lillieblake

    lillieblake New Member

    Yes, I hae problems with balance and you described it exactly, like I am drunk. I do get dizzy a lot, but even if I am not dizzy I run into walls. I think it has to do with the fibro. But i don't know what to do about it.

    Good Luck

  13. SoDanca

    SoDanca New Member

    Same here! I have terrible loss-of-balance b/c of my CFS. I don't get spinning vertigo, but I bump into things alot, and I always feel off-kilter, like I'm being pulled to one side. The fancy name my doctor gave this is "disequilibrium." I have never drunk alcohol (B4 or after DX), but I too am scared that I would fail any field sobriety test with flying colors. I'm one of the few people that would be BEGGING for a breathalizer test just to prove that I haven't been drinking (LOL)!!
  14. xphile

    xphile New Member

    I remember being at the bowling alley one time and I started to make my approach, brought my arm back, and as I threw the ball I toppled over sideways into the people standing at lane two!(I was bowling on lane 3) lol I am forever banging into walls, doors, and other barriers I should be dodging. I'm lucky the only bones I've broken are ribs during a car crash; you'd think I'd really be in fragments by now :)


    BILLCAMO New Member

    but , I had to pick myself off the floor 1st. LOL

    This problem seems to be common with these DDs.

    With me , it is not connected with meds. There are so many unanswered questions with these DDs......

    Blessings ,

  16. kyra07

    kyra07 New Member

    I feel for you! I'm walking like I'm drunk too and with strange vission issues when it happens. I'm about to have an MRI to make sure there isn't a growth or tumor, which they doubt. I've had vertigo for 6 weeks now, which isn't long compared to some. After several tests, no diagnosis yet. So far, a middle ear issue, which isn't always contracting to protect the inner ear from certain noises. And an uploading nystagmus on my VMG, which they think is a CNS issue. Haven't researched that yet, but they didn't say either are causing the vertigo. sigh.

    My FM doc says none of her patients have vertigo, but I think, based on these responses, that it is a FM/CFIDS thing (barring an "ah-ha diagnosis." I'm sure I'll get a different answer when I bring this up to Dr. E tomorrow! I was told it could be a viral infection, which makes me think about those pesky HHV1, HHV4 and HHV6 that I have. Or it could be the meds, too: I am on Lyrica.

    It is worth talking to an ENT or neurologist to make sure it isn't an ear issue. Or if you are prone to migranes, might be worth checking in with a neurologist. I just read somewhere that a silent migrane can cause vertigo: it is a migrane with aura without the pain.

    Hang in there! :)
  17. UsedtobePerkyTina

    UsedtobePerkyTina New Member

    I didn't notice.

    But my mom noticed I had balance problems.

  18. zerped

    zerped New Member

    For my first, last and only DUI, I was driving with WAY too much alcohol in my system. Even so, I passed all the field sobriety tests the officer gave me, so she started making up some on her own! Now, 20 years of sobriety later, I can't do ANY of them well enough to pass!

    My first clue, in fact, that something was wrong was when I was getting ready to go to a class and found myself walking into walls, walking into the door jamb rather than through the door, etc. For the first couple years I very often used a cane. People attach such a stigma to using a cane! I used to tell people, "I'd rather walk like a normal person using a cane, and have people think there is something wrong with me (which there is), than not use a cane and have people look at me with pity and scorn and say, "Look at that hopeless drunk!"

  19. jaba520

    jaba520 New Member

    I feel like something is pulling me to the side sometimes as well. but mainly when I am sitting down. It happens more at restaurants than anywhere else, I always thought it was part of my anxiety issues. Interesting and makes me think maybe it is FM....
  20. SusanEU

    SusanEU New Member

    I'm always bruised from bumping into things and i know i look drunk sometimes.

    Sue in ontario