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Child having weakness, migraine, photosensitivity. Prescribed multivitamins with milk. Should psychiatrist be consulted?

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Practicing since : 2004
Answered : 1835 Questions
My son is 15 yrs old. Since last year he has started getting these bouts of weakness and migrane. He suddenly starts feeling weak and is not able to even get up from bed. He complaints of headaches as well. We have referred him to a physician twice. Docs opinion is that he is getting this cuase of harmonal changes and the growing age. He has prescribed multivitanim tablets and fesubin (again a multivitamin powder) with milk.
This time my son has developed photosensitivity alongwith previous other symptoms.

My doctor colleagues ( i m not one), are insisting that I should take him to a psychiatrist as he might be faking all this to bunk school. My husband as well as my in-laws also think the same. but I dont think so as he has time and again is saying that is does not have any issues in school or teacher etc..
Pls advise whether I should take him to a psychiatrist . Secondly if the first diagnosis is correct.
Posted Wed, 23 May 2012 in Mental Health
Answered by Dr. Ashish Mittal 1 hour later
Thanks for your query.

I appreciate your efforts for medical consultation in so much distress.

Important aspects of your query are:
•     15 year old boy
•     No history of school difficulty
•     Complaints of: bouts of weakness and migrane.

To me also it appear less likely from study related issues. From your description it appear that your child is suffering from condition called as cataplexy. It is a type of disorder related to narcolepsy.

In Cataplexy there is sudden loss of muscle tone while awake that makes you unable to move. Usually onset of this disorder occur between 15-30 years of age. Strong emotions (such as laughter or anger) can trigger this. Most attacks last for less than 30 seconds and can be missed. In severe cases, a person may fall and stay paralyzed for as long as several minutes.

For final diagnosis patient are investigated by investigations like: ECG, EEG and Sleep study to rule out seizures and sleep related disorder. After diagnosis patient treated with medicines like modafinil and lifestyle modification in form of:
-identifying & avoiding triggers
-small-frequent meals, nap after meals
-multiple short naps in day time.

I hope this information has been both informative and helpful for you. In case of any doubt, I will be available for follow ups.

Wish you good health.
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