Saturday, February 21, 2009

Alice in Wonderland Syndrome

Well, I'm finally back here. The excitement of the election and the inauguration of Barack Obama has finally died down a bit and I'm able to tear my brain away from politics enough to concentrate on doing some medical research.

It also helps that I recently discovered a brand new condition that is fascinating to me and will be of interest, I'm sure, to all of you hypochondriacs out there.

I discovered it because a friend recently told me that when she was a child she experienced spells where everything around her - the door, the window, the furniture, whatever - seemed abnormally large and she felt abnormally small. This experience was accompanied by a distinctive odor. I immediately thought that if this was something neurological, which it appeared to be, it probably had a name like "Alice in Wonderland Syndrome," since it sounded so much like what happened in the story..."One pill makes you larger, one pill makes you smaller..."

So, being me, I had to go Google it. Imagine my surprise when I found there really is a syndrome called Alice in Wonderland Syndrome!

According to HealthCentral.com, Alice in Wonderland Syndrome was first described by C.W. Lippman in 1952, but J. Todd actually named the syndrome "Alice in Wonderland" syndrome in his 1955 article, "The Syndrome of Alice in Wonderland," in the Canadian Medical Association Journal. As a result, the syndrome is sometimes also called Todd's Syndrome.

What Are the Symptoms of Alice in Wonderland Syndrome?

According to the Migraine Aura Foundation, the syndrome refers to "a variety of self-experienced body image disturbances affecting the experience of the size, mass, shape of the body or its position in space."

Sometimes the affected person experiences a feeling of everything around them being much larger and they themselves feel smaller (macropsia) or vice versa - where they feel very large and everything around them seems very small (micropsia). These perceptions are also known as macro-somatognosia or micro-somatognosia.

These symptoms can appear along with other distortions, in time, vision, or other senses (including smell, which would explain the odor my friend experienced).

Sufferers may also see changes in the size of body parts such as their hands.

Following is a full list of possible additional symptoms:

"- feeling as if walking doesn't get them anywhere, as if they were walking on a treadmill
- the perception that only parts of their body are larger/smaller than normal
- - the feeling of walking on sponges
lingering touch sensation, i.e. after you've touched something, you continue to feel it after you've stopped touching it. Touch sensation hallucinations can also occur.
- lingering sound sensation, i.e. you continue hearing something after the noise has stopped
- anxiety
- loss of limb control and general discoordination, usually because of distorted perceptions of where one's body is in relation to surroundings
- agnosia / memory loss (though this is thought to be more of a side-effect: If you're having to think really hard about every movement, it's hard to pay attention to anything else and thus hard to remember things.)"


What Causes It?

Alice in Wonderland Syndrome can be caused by/associated with:

- Migraines (the symptoms of AIWS may be part of the "aura" that precedes a migraine; often no headache is actually experienced).
- Certain drugs (including cough syrups containing dextromethorphan)
- Viruses (Epstein-Barr, which causes Mononucleosis, or other viruses)
- Epilepsy
- Brain tumors
- Schizophrenia
- Delirium Tremens (from alcohol abuse)

What Are the Treatments?

Generally there is no specific treatment for AIWS; the root cause is what must be treated. For the most common cause, migraines, there are a number of remedies, as well as dietary restrictions that can help mitigate the symptoms. See this link to the Mayo Clinic for full information about migraine headaches.

For more information on treatment for epilepsy, see this link to Epilepsy.com.

Often the syndrome occurs in young children and eventually they may outgrow it. Others don't experience it until adulthood.

Will You Get It?

Probably not, unless you are a migraine sufferer. According to Pediatrics in Review:

"In the US it is estimated that 8.7 million females and 2.6 million males suffer from disabling migraine. The occurrence of migraine is greatest in adulthood, but this disorder is one of the most common causes of headache in children as well. In a 14-year longitudinal study of more than 9000 school children, Billie reported that 5% had had migraine attacks by 15 years of age.

A recent population-based study in Olmsted County, Minnesota, suggests an even greater incidence in this age range. For example, the highest incidence of newly diagnosed migraine headaches appearing in males, 246 per 100 000 person-years, occurred in those aged 10 to 14 years."

For an interesting article on the subject, see this article from WABC news.

37 comments:

Fran said...

I thought you were going to say the cure was to have tea with the Mad Hatter or attend a Caucus race! Hmm! Interesting! Just don't chase White Rabbits & stay away from the Queen!

But seriously there are lots of quirky things that happen with migraines- apparently, this is just one of them

Liberality said...

when my son was younger he would have these nightmares that it would be almost impossible to wake him up from. I asked him once what was happening that frightened him so and he'd tell me that everything was too big or that he was too small, or that everything was just out of whack-wrong. he does get bad headaches (like his sister and mother does).

Mauigirl said...

Hi Fran,
Yes, migraines can have some really weird symptoms. I've never had a migraine headache but have had ocular migraines - which for me consisted of jaggec curved light kind of out of the corner of my eye. It would last for about 15 minutes and then go away. Very strange. I had them about 3 or 4 times and now haven't had them since.

Liberality, it sounds as if that's what he had all right. My friend never even told her mother she was experiencing these things. I think she thought it happened to everyone now and then!

Christopher said...

Fascinating. I have never heard of this before.

I'm going to mention it to Jim and ask him if they studied it in RN school.

Two things that are sorta' related because they involve spacial things.

1. I read about people who believe they have "little hands." They're regular sized people but they look at their hands and they feel like they've shrunk to infant size. The article I saw said it could be traced back to childhood trauma and profound anxiety.

2. Men who have a fetish to be crushed under huge women. Not heavy women but giant women. They are aroused by the idea of Amazonian women crushing them under their high heals.

I think these two are pretty interesting. I'm endlessly fascinated by the variety in human behavior. There's really no such thing as "one size fits all."

Everyone is different to some extent and everyone seems to have something.

Mauigirl said...

Christopher, interesting about the little hands thing. I hadn't heard about that. I guess there are a lot of body image issues out there for various reasons. The giant woman thing is also interesting - maybe in the same category as those people who want to be treated like babies and wear diapers! It takes all kinds...!

david santos said...

Thankd for your posting! I love it!
Congrats!!!

Mauigirl said...

Thanks, David! I hope to post once a week on Medicana now that I finally broke the ice!

Deb said...

Hi...never been over to this blog. Your post was very interesting and now I have something else to worry about! Yes, I suffer from migraines...but I have managed to control them of late.
Seriously, very interesting.

littlewisp said...

My daughter is nine and she has been going through this since she was two. She always would say her eyes are going fast. Objects and people would look huge or distorted. She would tell us to stop talking so loud when we weren't. She also said her hands and mouth felt really big. This usually occurs one hour after she goes to sleep, but can happen during the day. Scary for her.

Kira said...

It's preferable on my part to be reading these type of articles... I mean correct me if I'm wrong, reading something like this coming from a person who is well educated on the topic makes it more interesting to read. I can tell you that it is really great that you know your material. Focus on one trade, focus on everything that is tied to it, make a chart of what you need to know. And then, only then will your article come out as great as this one. You can really feel the quality of this article
Medical Spa Position

Annie-Marie said...

My husbans suffers from epilpesy and he has several intense seizures about a month ago. We discovered that after one of his episodes his sense of taste and smell vanished. When we went to see the neurologist he explained that what happened (lost of taste & smell) was called Todd's syndrome (also known as Alice in Wonderland syndrome). In doing recherche however it seems that Alice in Wonderland is a little different as it talks about sight and perception. His taste and smell has not returned but I'm still searching for more answer's and hoping to find someone who has had Todd's syndrome. I just wanted to say thank you for bringing this little issue to light! Annie

Elen Elizabeth said...

To the comment above:
Yes, a possible cause of the Alice in wonderland syndrome is Temporal lobe epilepsy. Which as you know is a chronic neurological condition.

I actually do not have any information on the effectiveness of treatments for Epstein-Barr virus or Temporal Lobe Epilepsy which are both possible causes for AIWS.

Hope it doesnt happen again!

-Eli
Medical Careers

Sherilyn said...

I am a 41 year old female who has experienced AIWS all of my life. I usually only have these fast, slow large, small distorted sensations when I am sick with a cold or flu and have a high temperature. It was more prominent when I was a child, but even now I still experience it.
I am a very healthy person who does not experience epilepsy, migraines or any other conditions. I do however suffer from hypothyroidism. In reading other postings from other websites, I noticed a few others who also advised they were hypothyroid and suffers of AIWS....humm.
One of my daughters also experiences AIWS during high fevers due to flu or colds. I was delighted to find this blog forum on AIWS and really wanted to share my experiences on this topic.

NunoF said...

Hi Mauigirl!
I also suffer from AIWS since around 3 years old (31 years now). At first, when as a child, I was scared every time I had those 10 minutes episodes of AIWS, but since my 18, I live with that with no worry.
Normally, when around 15 years old, I had about 2-3 times a week, around 18 only 1 a month, now around 1 every 1 or 2 months.
That was usually at night, before I started to sleep.
Perception of space is deformed, because when looking to my hands seemed really small, and feet seemed too distant. Sounds didn't seem to stop. If I heard a voice, seemed he was shouting even after stopping to talk. Spongy feeling of hands and other parts of my body were also present.
I do not have headaches, and I could say I had no more than 20 headaches during all my life... so AIWS is not only for people with headaches.

May said...

Hi! thanks for your article!
I suffer from AIWS since I was a child. I also started suffering from Multiple Chemical Sensitivity about a year ago. With Multiple Chemical Sensitivity my AIWS' symptoms have increased. I think chemicals caused me AIWS. Maybe it was cough syrup. I noticed odd smells everytime I suffered an AIWS episode when I was a child, like your friend did.

Heather said...

Hi i have found your posting very interesting, as I have been a sufferer of this condition for 12 months now. The amount of problems that this has caused me is life altering. I am unable to walk on patterned carpets, misjudge steps and spaces, resulting in many accidents. Visually my eyes see normally but they do not relay to my brain what they see. I am unable to eat and live on supplements due to the smell of food. I lose total sensation in my arms and legs at different times. Pictures and the TV are distorted, and often I write or read complete gobbledygook. I am a nursing manager in the UK but have very recently had to finish my job as every day tasks are too difficult. I am under an excellent Neurologist who is desperately trying to help me, but with the syndrome I have developed a global sensatisation which means that the drugs that may have helped me have made me very ill.It is still trial and error.My heart goes out to anyone with this condition.

gekozen said...

I suffer with aiws however I dont get migraines or rarely headaches. It usualy happens if I have an argument with my girlfriend lol. What makes it stranger is that both myself 21 and my brother 25 have it. But its really interesting when it happens, and when I think to myself in my head it feels like im shouting at myself...hard to explain really :S

gekozen said...

I suffer with aiws however I dont get migraines or rarely headaches. It usualy happens if I have an argument with my girlfriend lol. What makes it stranger is that both myself 21 and my brother 25 have it. But its really interesting when it happens, and when I think to myself in my head it feels like im shouting at myself...hard to explain really :S

Kat said...

I've been suffering from AIWS since I was a child and I'm 27 now. I have always called them "fast dreams" even though they occur when I'm awake. The episodes normally happen late at night when I'm very relaxed, laying in bed and trying to fall asleep. I begin to feel very tiny compared to the room around me and the room feels very far away. Sounds in the room next to me sound amplified as though people are yelling. Every movement I make, no matter how slow it is, feels like I'm moving at the speed of light. When I was a child these episodes used to scare me a lot. I would get out of bed and lay with my mom and dad until they went a way. They normally last about 10-15 minutes. Now they happen about 3 times a year. I don't suffer from headaches or epilepsy but am borderline bipolar and am medicated.

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Mauigirl said...

Wow, am finally getting around to trying to catch back up with my Medicana blog and was amazed to see so many comments on the Alice in Wonderland Syndrome. I had never realized this syndrome even existed and it seems as if it is not all that uncommon if so many of you have had these symptoms. Thanks for participating in the discussion and sharing your experiences.

Alysa Good Stuff said...

This is something I have some similar signs of at times. Very interesting though isn't it? Blogged a little about it too: http://alysagoodstuff.blogspot.com/2011/11/alysa-good-stuff-favorites-alice-in.html

Judy said...

I caught the House episode last night concerning AIWS, and it sounded familiar - casting me on a google search about it. I experienced similar symptons when I was younger - mainly during the school years. It would usually come while reading something intensive or complex, while laying my back - sometimes under a dim light. I was normally at the point of wanting to drift off to sleep when something would "switch" in my brain...and everything would seem very close (yet far at the same time) and sooooo still. Sounds would be pure, far away, but so close as if whispered right in my ear. TV sets, lights, dressers across the room were light years away...but within sniffing distance at the same time. Nothing ever scared me, and I just chalked it up to tired eyes, tired brain - enjoy it for the moment. I always knew that I could always just look away, move a bit, and shake it off. These events only lasted a few moments at a time, and back then, maybe once or twice a week while reading. Later in life, especially if I was keeping very late hours, it would happen while watching tv - but very infrequently. No one ever knew... I didn`t think it was worth discussing. Now, as an adult, I do suffer from ocular migraines now and then -- so maybe there is a correlation. I find it all fascinating.

Judy said...

I caught the House episode last night concerning AIWS, and it sounded familiar - casting me on a google search about it. I experienced similar symptons when I was younger - mainly during the school years. It would usually come while reading something intensive or complex, while laying my back - sometimes under a dim light. I was normally at the point of wanting to drift off to sleep when something would "switch" in my brain...and everything would seem very close (yet far at the same time) and sooooo still. Sounds would be pure, far away, but so close as if whispered right in my ear. TV sets, lights, dressers across the room were light years away...but within sniffing distance at the same time. Nothing ever scared me, and I just chalked it up to tired eyes, tired brain - enjoy it for the moment. I always knew that I could always just look away, move a bit, and shake it off. These events only lasted a few moments at a time, and back then, maybe once or twice a week while reading. Later in life, especially if I was keeping very late hours, it would happen while watching tv - but very infrequently. No one ever knew... I didn`t think it was worth discussing. Now, as an adult, I do suffer from ocular migraines now and then -- so maybe there is a correlation. I find it all fascinating.

Judy said...

I caught the House episode last night concerning AIWS, and it sounded familiar - casting me on a google search about it. I experienced similar symptons when I was younger - mainly during the school years. It would usually come while reading something intensive or complex, while laying my back - sometimes under a dim light. I was normally at the point of wanting to drift off to sleep when something would "switch" in my brain...and everything would seem very close (yet far at the same time) and sooooo still. Sounds would be pure, far away, but so close as if whispered right in my ear. TV sets, lights, dressers across the room were light years away...but within sniffing distance at the same time. Nothing ever scared me, and I just chalked it up to tired eyes, tired brain - enjoy it for the moment. I always knew that I could always just look away, move a bit, and shake it off. These events only lasted a few moments at a time, and back then, maybe once or twice a week while reading. Later in life, especially if I was keeping very late hours, it would happen while watching tv - but very infrequently. No one ever knew... I didn`t think it was worth discussing. Now, as an adult, I do suffer from ocular migraines now and then -- so maybe there is a correlation. I find it all fascinating.

lnb8423 said...

I experienced AIWS as a child, often telling my mother about my strange symptoms which I normally experienced at night as I would try to drift off to sleep. The symptoms disappeared as I grew into my teens. At the age of fourteen I was diagnosed with chronic migraines and treated for them with topamax. I stopped taking the drug and I assume I "grew out of" the migraines. I am now 19 and began experiencing the disturbing symptoms I remembered having as a child in september of 2010. Coincidentally, around the same time my symptoms reappeared, I had a pretty severe blow to the head in a rock-climbing accident. I also began to indulge in psychoactive drugs when I turned 17. I no longer use these drugs and I strongly believe that my reappearing symptoms of AIWS were not caused by them --- especially seeing how my symptoms returned only weeks after hitting my head in September of 2010.

I have a family history of migraines and severe anxiety. I find that my symptoms are often correlated with anxiety, especially now that I am in college and under a lot of stress as a pre-nursing major. My symptoms include visual distortions --- often feeling the "fish eye" effect --- where things in my direct vision seem to be coming closer or moving further away. As I lay in bed, I sometimes experience the feeling of my bed falling out from under me, sinking into my bed, or feeling as if my legs are growing miles long. The symptoms feel so real that I find myself turning on the light to make sure it's just a sensation. I also experience strange auditory hallucinations when under a lot of stress--- all incoming sounds seem aggressive, very loud, and have a metallic or "crunchy" feeling. These symptoms are very hard to describe and trying to find the correct vocabulary to describe them is nearly impossible.

I have been seeing a psychologist for a while now and she confirmed my belief of having AWIS (although she had to do a lot of research first because she had never heard of the syndrome). I am not currently taking any medication for AWIS and don't plan on doing so. I am in the process of finding a natural solution that works for me. I am glad to finally be able to put a name on my strange disorder, and to know that I am certainly not alone.

As scary as these symptoms may sound, I have actually began to enjoy them and often find myself giggling over them! My only real issue now with my AWIS symptoms is that they can become annoying and make it difficult to concentrate on my school work.

Thanks for the article and interesting blogs!

msederoff said...

I stumbled onto this syndrome by accident online. I was astounded.

I had this syndrome when I was a child. I called it “Big Feelings”. I didn’t know how to explain to my parents what was happening to me other than to say I was having “Big Feelings”. I would also go into panic mode and shake all over. Sounds would seem much louder than normal. I remember laying on my bed and crying and shaking. My mother kept saying “What’s wrong sweetie, what’s wrong!” I put my hands over my ears and said “Stop talking so loud!!” My mother would say “I’m not talking loud; I’m talking normal” but it would sound like shouting to me.

I even missed school because of this syndrome. It really distressed my parents, especially my mother. The episodes would usually last an hour or two and then gradually subside.

As I grew older, I discovered that if I watched television, the condition seemed to clear up. Maybe it was the result of focusing on something. I don’t know. As I came to understand that it was only hallucinations and it would not hurt me, I grew out of it.

All my life, though, I have wondered about it and wondered what it was. My parents never sought medical council for me. I stumbled onto the syndrome accidently when researching Complex Partial Seizures for my husband who has epilepsy.

msederoff said...

I stumbled onto this syndrome by accident online. I was astounded.

I had this syndrome when I was a child. I called it “Big Feelings”. I didn’t know how to explain to my parents what was happening to me other than to say I was having “Big Feelings”. I would also go into panic mode and shake all over. Sounds would seem much louder than normal. I remember laying on my bed and crying and shaking. My mother kept saying “What’s wrong sweetie, what’s wrong!” I put my hands over my ears and said “Stop talking so loud!!” My mother would say “I’m not talking loud; I’m talking normal” but it would sound like shouting to me.

I even missed school because of this syndrome. It really distressed my parents, especially my mother. The episodes would usually last an hour or two and then gradually subside.

As I grew older, I discovered that if I watched television, the condition seemed to clear up. Maybe it was the result of focusing on something. I don’t know. As I came to understand that it was only hallucinations and it would not hurt me, I grew out of it.

All my life, though, I have wondered about it and wondered what it was. My parents never sought medical council for me. I stumbled onto the syndrome accidently when researching Complex Partial Seizures for my husband who has epilepsy.

msederoff said...

I stumbled onto this syndrome by accident online. I was astounded.

I had this syndrome when I was a child. I called it “Big Feelings”. I didn’t know how to explain to my parents what was happening to me other than to say I was having “Big Feelings”. I would also go into panic mode and shake all over. Sounds would seem much louder than normal. I remember laying on my bed and crying and shaking. My mother kept saying “What’s wrong sweetie, what’s wrong!” I put my hands over my ears and said “Stop talking so loud!!” My mother would say “I’m not talking loud; I’m talking normal” but it would sound like shouting to me.

I even missed school because of this syndrome. It really distressed my parents, especially my mother. The episodes would usually last an hour or two and then gradually subside.

As I grew older, I discovered that if I watched television, the condition seemed to clear up. Maybe it was the result of focusing on something. I don’t know. As I came to understand that it was only hallucinations and it would not hurt me, I grew out of it.

All my life, though, I have wondered about it and wondered what it was. My parents never sought medical council for me. I stumbled onto the syndrome accidently when researching Complex Partial Seizures for my husband who has epilepsy.

alannapantss said...

Im 18 and i just expirienced this five minutes ago and i got scared and googled it but i also expierenced it as a child and i kind of liked it idk why but my uncle had hederetary schizophrenia and idk maybe thats it but this explains a lot i hope i can sleep now

mic masters said...

I suffered this in my school years but never told my parents,usually as i can remember i would be sitting in my living room,and i think probably getting a row for something, then suddenly my dad would be right up next to me inches away then it could go the opposite way as if the room was like a long corridor and he was 100 foot away,when this was happening i felt like i was sinking into the chair and could not physically move.I also suffered from bad nightmares and can remember trying to push the ceiling away from me as i felt like the room was closing in on me and i filled the entire room.I have never mentioned this to anyone ,at the time i didnt know what was wrong so i never brought it up,i dont get it anymore but reading this reminded me ,i also have never really had bad migrains,i also used to get the room spining but only when i was in bed.

mic masters said...

I also suffered this as a youngster,i would be sitting on living room chair getting a telling off when my dad and the rest of the room would be right in my face almost touching, then the room would shoot back out like a long corridor with my dad sitting in his chair what seemed like a mile away ,when he seemed far away i could hardly hear him and at the time this happened i could not move and felt like i was sinking into the chair.I also got bed spins at night and sometimes the room would close in on me to the extent i would be trying to push the ceiling away from me,plus very bad nightmares,this only seemed to happen in childhood and went away by its self,another thing is i have never really suffered from migrains.(pretty scary at the time with no control over it,i just had to sit it out till it stopped)

The Other Left said...

I had this as a child. Mine included halucinations. The most repeated, frightening, one would be when I was in my room at night. The walls would be very far away, but also close enough to smother me. The entire globe of the earth was on my bedroom floor (a halucination, I didn't have anything like that) shrunk to fit somehow, and I could SEE every single person. And they were falling off, like the styrofoam beads might come out of a beanbag. And I had to collect them all up and put them back before they died. This happened EVERY NIGHT. People dying, right in my room, the whole world over. But of course, how could they, the world couldn't be there in my room, how could I reach it if it were there, it would have to be so far away to be that small in my vision, but it was right there - I could see the people! My mother must have thought I was insane when I tried to explain to her, and she didn't see the world, either. I think my dad must have suffered from this as a child too, he told me "it's okay, you won't see things if you stare at a light bulb. That's the only thing that works." So I stared at the light in the hall every night until I fell asleep, and if I woke up, I turned it back on...if I could see the floor waaaay down there to get to it. I had the sound sensitivity, too. I could literally hear every word spoken in the house from any room, and yeah, the staring at the light worked, because I was light sensitive too, so it pretty near blinded me each night. Dad was right.

As I hit my preteens, it progressed into childhood epilepsy. Into my 20s, they said that if I had been on that dose of epilepsy drugs for so long with no seizures or dose changes, I likely didn't need it - wean off and see. And I never had another seizure.

But I developed wicked migraines that blurred one right into the other. Many issues later with spine and nerves...and to summarize, I don't receive pain signals well, sometimes not at all.

I get migraine auras now, but not the migraine. Sometimes, the flashy lights blind me because they cover my vision. I thought it was just optical symptoms, so I never brought it up to the doc. Recently, I was complaining about not being able to see through the aura lights. He said that it's very rare to 'only' have the optical symptoms. That it's much more likely that I am having all the other migraine ssymptoms, minus 'just' the pain. Yes, a nice minus, but all the rest of it is still hanging round. Ohhh.

I find it interesting to look back and see the neurological connection all the way into childhood. I wonder if it were treated at that time, if it would be less severe now.

K Conner said...

My 10 year old son recently started having these after starting a medication for a mild tic disorder. As an RN, my first thought was the medication, guanfacine (which is a mild anti-hypertensive used for ADHD and tics). His neurologist said that this was quite common in children and was most likely not due to the medications, it's not a known side effect of guanfacine. However, they have been happening quite often and only started after he had his dose increased pretty significantly. So, I decided to call the pharmacist since my son is adamant that it is from his medications. As you can imagine, he is extremely nervous to take even one more dose. The pharmacist says that this is a symptom of something with his central nervous system and, since this medication effects the CNS, it could be the cause and we should discontinue and call the Dr tomorrow. He says it could be making his blood pressure drop low enough that it's making him perceive things like he is. My son says things seem to be going really fast to him. Something that he has never experienced prior to a couple of months ago. So, it seems warranted to stop the medication and see if this goes away. Yet ANOTHER case of a Dr not listening to a Mom who knows her child. Parents, especially Moms, always listen to your instinct!

Alice in Wonderland Syndrome in itself is not serious. However, it "can be" a symptom of something more serious. i.e. a tumor or possibly a reaction to a medication. My son did currently undergo testing to check for seizures as he has a very mild for of Aspergers, which we all know is neurological. So, I am happy to say his Neurologist is doing the necessary tests. Again, listen to that inner voice. It's there for a reason.

K Conner said...

My 10 year old son recently started having these after starting a medication for a mild tic disorder. As an RN, my first thought was the medication, guanfacine (which is a mild anti-hypertensive used for ADHD and tics). His neurologist said that this was quite common in children and was most likely not due to the medications, it's not a known side effect of guanfacine. However, they have been happening quite often and only started after he had his dose increased pretty significantly. So, I decided to call the pharmacist since my son is adamant that it is from his medications. As you can imagine, he is extremely nervous to take even one more dose. The pharmacist says that this is a symptom of something with his central nervous system and, since this medication effects the CNS, it could be the cause and we should discontinue and call the Dr tomorrow. He says it could be making his blood pressure drop low enough that it's making him perceive things like he is. My son says things seem to be going really fast to him. Something that he has never experienced prior to a couple of months ago. So, it seems warranted to stop the medication and see if this goes away. Yet ANOTHER case of a Dr not listening to a Mom who knows her child. Parents, especially Moms, always listen to your instinct!

Alice in Wonderland Syndrome in itself is not serious. However, it "can be" a symptom of something more serious. i.e. a tumor or possibly a reaction to a medication. My son did currently undergo testing to check for seizures as he has a very mild for of Aspergers, which we all know is neurological. So, I am happy to say his Neurologist is doing the necessary tests. Again, listen to that inner voice. It's there for a reason.

K Conner said...

My 10 year old son recently started having these after starting a medication for a mild tic disorder. As an RN, my first thought was the medication, guanfacine (which is a mild anti-hypertensive used for ADHD and tics). His neurologist said that this was quite common in children and was most likely not due to the medications, it's not a known side effect of guanfacine. However, they have been happening quite often and only started after he had his dose increased pretty significantly. So, I decided to call the pharmacist since my son is adamant that it is from his medications. As you can imagine, he is extremely nervous to take even one more dose. The pharmacist says that this is a symptom of something with his central nervous system and, since this medication effects the CNS, it could be the cause and we should discontinue and call the Dr tomorrow. He says it could be making his blood pressure drop low enough that it's making him perceive things like he is. My son says things seem to be going really fast to him. Something that he has never experienced prior to a couple of months ago. So, it seems warranted to stop the medication and see if this goes away. Yet ANOTHER case of a Dr not listening to a Mom who knows her child. Parents, especially Moms, always listen to your instinct!

Alice in Wonderland Syndrome in itself is not serious. However, it "can be" a symptom of something more serious. i.e. a tumor or possibly a reaction to a medication. My son did currently undergo testing to check for seizures as he has a very mild for of Aspergers, which we all know is neurological. So, I am happy to say his Neurologist is doing the necessary tests. Again, listen to that inner voice. It's there for a reason.

kimberley Austin said...

Hello there,

I am just wondering if anyone would like to answer a few questions about their experiences of living with alice in wonderland syndrome.

I am writing my dissertation to see if there are any similarities across peoples responses.

This would be a great help
Please email L1026314@live.tees.ac.uk