I was wondering if Chiari can be asymptomatic and become symptomatic later in life?
My MRI came back with "Borderline Mild Chiari Malformation 1 with 4th ventricle effacement" My brain extends 5 mm below my foramen magnum. I went into the MRI for elevated prolactin levels and they found a pituitary tumor that's a microadenoma (5 x 4 mm). I'm not sure what the symptoms would feel like, with both of these newly found issues.
My health insurance runs out in a month, so the question is should I get this looked at more closely? My neurologist said the Radiologist was being "dramatic" in the MRI results. However, if I don't have symptoms ever, then I don't see need to spend money on the issue.
I was diagnosed at 52 after I developed balance issues. I had never had typical Chiari headaches until just before my diagnosis. Looking back, I’ve always been clumsy, drop and spill things, and terrible hand writing – all probably due to chari. So - you certainly can be diagnosed later in life, can have virtually no symptoms, or at least symptoms you can tolerate. My advice is not to worry, and enjoy your good health. All patients are unique, and you will know if you your symptoms become increasingly difficult that might require surgery. For now - you have more information about your health than you had before. No need to do more unless you really need to seek relief.
Thanks for the reply Elle-- I'm 25...ha, so not trying to rush to the surgical room. They didn't tell me much about it, so I just wanted to get an opinion. I only have quick headaches every few days.. its not debilitating. Just got my degree, trying to head to Europe, see an old lover, etc.etc. eetc. ha, dont want anything to slow me down. anyhow, the tumor's enough on my load anyway.
Curious, did you have surgery? Or are ya breathin through it?
Hello, I was diagnosed at 39 and have had surgeries I didn’t need. I was told my balance issue was from my inner ear. Make sure you get good information before any surgery. I got to the point where I just wanted my symptoms and my pain to go away. I hope all goes well with you.
Not to change the topic, but you will need long term(probably years) of treatment for your described prolactinoma. Medical management is quite good for those(and quite expensive). Talk to your treating MD, ideally an endocrinologist, and figure out what your treatment will be. You may need to maintain that medical insurance, even at a high cost.
In terms of your Chiari, with 5mm and no symptoms, that is something that doesn't need treatment currently(and will hopefully never need treatment). I would recommend getting a CD-ROM of your MRI(they should give that to you for free or for minimal cost). I routinely repeat an MRI 1 year out just to assess change but there is no good science there(it is really for my and the patient's peace of mind). However, if you truly have a prolactinoma and need treatment, you'll need repeat MRIs for that anyway.
Thanks for the response! I'm sorry you had to go through unnecessary procedures. However, it is nice to see someone on the webs with the experience. Alot of people seem to push surgery. I could do without the pain, costs, and time off work. Anyhow, optimistcally..maybe your surgery too early prevented future problems. Or you could just pretend (; thanks!!