Sunday, July 09, 2006
you thought i was done talking about headaches?

yeah right. i've only just begun to talk!!! hahahaha. in any case, it was suggested in the comments that i fill you (my readers) in on what treatments/tests/other nonsense i have tried to relieve these migraines.

for those who are new; i have migraines. every day. i have it when i wake up in the morning, until i go to sleep at night. so when i say all the time, i mean all the time. anywho, this is the reason i don't have a job, and don't go to school. needless to say, it cramps my style.

i have seen 5 neurologists, in california, pennsylvania, and utah. (that's a whole other story) i also have seen a holistic chiropractor and a massage therapist (for a massage with essential oils) -- we have done tests including an MRI with and without contrast, an EKG, and EEG, hearing and balance testing, testing my sight, testing for a hole in my heart, a spinal tap to test the pressure of the fluid and to be sure there was no infection in it.

i have tried many many many meds; in the preventative category we have topamax, depakote, zonegran, propranonol, verapamil, and doxepin. all of these had no effect except the topamax made me lose weight, the depakote helped me gain it back, and the doxepin made the headaches worse. in the 'natural' arena i've tried these supplements for prevention: feverfew, butterbur, vit.B2, and magnesium.

as far as abortives go, i use toradol, and if that doesn't help, i go to zomig. i have used in the past imitrex, relpax, maxalt (didn't work), and frova.

moving on. ......

what i DO take; is prozac (supposed to help w/preventing) -- a calcium supplement, and an anti-seizure med called tegretol. tegretol helps my headaches somewhat. unfortunately, i'm still not at a functioning human being level after it, but it does help. this was actually prescribed b/c i had a few seizures, and my neuro wanted that to stop. it's a lucky side effect that it helps my headaches. seriously now. i'd rather have the seizures than the migraines. just sayin'.

so i've tried the chiropractor, a massage w/essential oils, those meds, a natural remedy that didn't work for me, staying off wheat for a couple months to test for a wheat allergy. i went in to the hospital overnight last summer for a round of IV meds; DHE being the main one to 'break the cycle' of the migraines. this worked, but a week later they started back up again. ah, and then there was the 'headache stick', changing of birth control pills, taking me off of birth control pills, and the current elimination diet.

that's about all i can think of right now. there might be more. in any case, the main problem is that every med i try has to be tried for 3 months. and that's after i've tapered up to the correct dosage. so that takes a lot of time.

:) hopefully this has sparked some idea for you; something else i should try. let me know! i'm interested in trying acupuncture, but have not gotten a recommendation for a good one in town yet.

Blogger Kristi had this to say:

Hi. I just stumbled on your site from somewhere and I literally just this mornng read an article in the new good housekeeping about a disease called Celiac (I think there is more to the name), that is basically a severe reaction to gluten. Anyway the typical diagnosis takes about 11 years, although it is improving now. Anyway- it is the August issue with Rachel Ray on the cover, maybe it might help....

9:58 AM 

Anonymous Denise had this to say:

WOW! That's a lot of meds and testing!!! I'm wondering if all of those meds are clashing with one another. I'm no doctor, but I've witnessed a few too many on lots of prescriptions...only to find out down the road that some of those drugs should not be mixed.

I'm keeping my fingers, toes and everything else crossed that neurologist #6 will be a TRUE migraine specialist and will be able to shed some light on your situation.

9:59 AM 

Blogger "Grandi" had this to say:

Wow - I can't even imagine what you go through every day. Hang in there and keep trying. In this age of "miracle" medicines, there has got to be one just for you. I'll be praying for an answer for you.

10:27 AM 

Blogger Lisa Goldstein/Kelly Kelly had this to say:

Oh God, That suuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuucks. I am sor sorry to hear you are going through that. I have a few friends with migraine problems. And it sounds awful.

My husband just wrote a story about a medical device that will soon hit the market that sends magnetic pulses into the brain and neutrelizes migraines. People who test drove it loooved it. So I guess just know there are probably new things on the way that might help. Otherwise, sounds like you are doing everything you can to unlock the mystery. All of things other people said, diet changes, allergies, medication side effects might trigger it, also the hormonal cyle BCP might trigger it. Ugh. Hang in there.


10:30 AM 

Blogger Grim Reality Girl had this to say:

Sorry you are going through this! I went through all the same tests. Accupuncture DOES help!!! I had a doctor who had gone back and learned accupuncture when he found it to be effective for his pain. He learned the art. I didn't believe, but it DOES work! Verapamil (spelling?) was a drug that helped me as well.

It turns out I was one of the hole in the heart people. I had a relatively small PFO that was corrected. My migraines are rare now -- it is amazing when I recall what it was like before the surgery. I hope you find your solution. Best of luck -- I'm saying some prayer for you. Migrains suck. Accupuncture may be worth a drive for you -- one session per week can help a LOT. Even learning the correct pressure points might be helpful.

One crazy suggestion: My doctor who learned accupuncture wanted me to stay away from silver. No silver jewelry. Since I didn't wear it often this wasn't a big deal to me... thought I'd pass it on to you, you never know!

9:23 PM 

Anonymous Caryn had this to say:

Oh, that's awful. And I was so hoping the comments from last time would have helped you, but it looks like you've been through everything and more. Best wishes with getting it sorted out.

9:03 AM 

Blogger beth had this to say:

Ugh. My brother-in-law had debilitating migraines for five years - what finally helped him was TMJ treatment, turns out that his jaw was so compressed/compacted that it was messing everything up. I didn't see it in your list and a regular MRI might have missed it (they do a specific TMJ MRI as part of the diagnosis rather than a whole-head one as well as a ton of X-rays.) Anyway, it's a thought. Hope you can find relief!

11:48 AM 

Blogger Emily had this to say:

you guys are super. seriously. i'm always encouraged when i hear of someone (or some people, in this case!) who've come out the other side of something like this.

here's my questions/comments -- kristi, is gluten the same as a wheat allergy? i did go off of wheat for a while, on dr.'s instructions, trying to see if it was a wheat allergy. is this different? i'm clueless.

also, i should have mentioned that each drug listed got its own 3 month trial, so as to not mix reactions...

acupuncture, here i come! i'll work on that for sure.

also, the medical device, lisa; i've heard about it, and many ppl. i know who've tried it had the leads move -- and then they have to get them surgically re-placed where they belong! ack! it scares me. have you heard anything about that?

and TMJ....interesting....i'll have to add that to the 'ask dr.' list.

thanks friends!~

12:40 PM 

Anonymous Anonymous had this to say:

just passing through but thought i would leave my two cents worth. I have had a life of migrains that started when I was midteen and it turns out it is a homone imbalance. I would make sure you do not have something like pcos or endomitrosis that could be totally missing things up. Just a thought.

8:46 PM 

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I'm 25 - married, and recently graduated from Brigham Young University, studying music; I play piano. My husband is just starting his PhD program at the University of Utah in computer architecture.



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