brain fog is my only symptom

Posted by: Didier

brain fog is my only symptom - 02/17/20 05:06 AM

Hi AS kickers,

I have had AS and UC for 15 years, though mostly asymptomatic. This last year my symptom has been a weird brain fog, a mental fatigue that comes and goes most days. I am ok when I wake up in the morning but often within a few hours I start to feel groggy and have trouble keeping up with social situations and following what people are saying, and often can't think of what to do say myself. With enough coffee I can still do written work, I can do physical exercise, but I just lack the alertness for in-person meetings and conversation.

Last time I checked my blood work, my inflammation markers like ESR, CRP, etc. were pretty low. I don't have much pain or stiffness, but this brain fog seems to improve, to some extent, if I use my NSAID celebrex, so it seems nevertheless like it is related to inflammation.

Anyone experience something like this before? Most accounts of brain fog I have read from other people coincidence with high levels of inflammation and pain, not as the only symptom. As a result, my rheum considers me to be in remission and has no idea about the mental fatigue.

On the Facebook AS group, most suggest taking vitamin and herbal cocktails (curcumin, B12, etc.) but so far haven't had much success with those.
Posted by: Didier

Re: brain fog is my only symptom - 02/17/20 05:26 AM

Here was an interesting comment from someone on another message board. Unfortunately no links to studies so not sure how valid any of this is "Our best understanding is that autoimmune fatigue occurs as a somewhat separate process to inflammatory activity. It may even be the residual result of inflammatory damage, rather than an ongoing process, and consequently only symptomatically treated (ie - with dopamine agonists and stimulants ) Even biologics make only a slight difference to fatigue levels, that is most likely explained by better sleep and rest due to symptomatic relief."
Posted by: mulehound

Re: brain fog is my only symptom - 02/17/20 09:14 AM

I have no idea why this is plaguing you. I hope you get it figured out.
Posted by: thebluedog

Re: brain fog is my only symptom - 02/21/20 12:58 PM

I understand your frustration! I had been dealing with brain fog/fatigue for years. I could never figure out why. Like you I'd wake up with no brain fog and by mid day I would generally feel the brain fog/fatigue. It was an actual physical sensation in my head too. It was hard to think clearly, mental clarity was weak.
Fortunately, just in the last 6 months I generally don't have brain fog anymore.
At the start of 2019 I altered my diet to very low starch and before that I focused on healing my leaky gut. My diet isn't as strict now.
I think the brain fog/fatigue may be a result of leaky gut. Leaky gut can cause food sensitivities. I did notice that that after eating fructose my brain fog seemed to be more intense. Not always though. Still happens sometimes.
Leaky gut and gut dysbiosis is essentially what is at the root cause of AS. You may need to focus on healing leaky gut. Maybe that would improve your brain fog.

* I just received my CDSA stool test results today. My zonulin levels are now within normal range. Zonulin is a marker of leaky gut.
Posted by: Dotyisle

Re: brain fog is my only symptom - 03/02/20 05:54 AM

hello there,

At times I have had to deal with some brain fog, not necessarily at same time I have some stiffness or pain in my joints.

Hope you can find some relief.