In 1991 I had a weird episode of paralysis that lead to me being hospitalized with a spinal chord injury. They did some testing for MS and concluded 'suspected MS'. I think I had six bands.
In 2007 I went to a MS specialist clinic where they did extensive testing including a full spine and head MRI. They also contacted the person who originally did the oligoclonal band test in my cerebrospinal fluid. He actually remembered my result because it was so odd.
After all this testing the neurologist at the clinic concluded that I didn't have MS, and that in 1991 I had an episode of Transverse Myelitis. He suspected that a virus was present in part of my spinal cord and that my immune system attacked it, causing spinal chord damage as a side-effect.
It was after ruling out MS that I started looking for other possiblities for my symptoms and found that ME/CFS fit everything perfectly.
From the above link:
TM can be the presenting feature of MS. In individuals with acute partial TM and normal brain MRI, about 10-33 percent develop MS over a five to ten-year period. If the brain MRI shows lesions, the transition rate to clinically definite MS is known to be quite high, in the range of 80 to 90 percent within a few years. Those who are ultimately diagnosed with MS are more likely to have asymmetric clinical findings, predominant sensory symptoms with relative sparing of motor systems, MR lesions extending over fewer than 2 spinal segments, abnormal brain MRI, and oligoclonal bands in the CSF.
PatJ That’s really interesting! Thanks for sharing. I’m glad the TM was temporary. I’ve asked this question because my brother is quite debilitated with symptoms very much like ME/CFS. So far, apart from having early stage Alzheimer’s the only thing that looks amiss is having those bands. His neurologist’s NP didn’t say anything about it though when we went over his spinal tap results. I’m going to pursue an explanation from the doctor.
I was also curious to see if ME/CFS Patients ever have those bands. I have ME/CFS and also Idiopathic Polyneuropathy. But I’ve never had a spinal tap.