Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Chronic Migraines with a dose of Positive Thinking

Thinking positive when you're in pain ... let's just be honest here ... is hard.

I'm going to do like promised and tell you my story in order. I returned to the doctor for my follow up and he gave me my diagnosis after checking me throughly.

Chronic Migraine

The International Headache Society defines chronic migraine as more than fifteen headache days per month over a three month period of which more than eight are migrainous, in the absence of medication over use.

The definition just in case you were wondering.

So, my doctor prescribed my first preventative. Depakote. It didn't seem to do anything, not that I could tell except it caused weight gain. I was not happy about that. Since it wasn't working, the doctor switched me to Topamax, which I've heard works for a lot of people. I'll come back to this medication in a minute. :)

Along with the preventative, I also used, as needed, maxalt or imitrex. You have to take these last two at onset for it to work. Once in a while it might've worked, but most of the time it didn't. It was stressful, because if I didn't take it at just the right time, I would be in pain for however many days the migraine decided to hang around.

Now, let's get back to the Topamax. I started out on 25mg. Doctor gradually raised dosage until I topped out at 200mg. It causes memory loss. Hahaha. But it's really not funny. If I forget to mention some things, that's why.

It also, in me, caused some really weird sensations. My chest tightened occasionally. It was a suffocating feeling. And a scary one too. The sensation didn't go away completely, but wasn't always dominate.

But the biggest thing Topimax did for me was, first of all, I lost all the weight I gained, plus a little more. For 10 days out of the month, every month, I felt no pain. The other 20 days, I had different kinds of headaches ... the worst two are listed below:
1. The lightheaded headache--I couldn't stand up without the blood rushing to my head and feeling I would pass out.
2. The stinging headache--This is the worst kind. It gave me the feeling of having poison in my blood. I felt like I had a 105 temperature, but I didn't. During these headaches, I would tell my husband, "I'm moving in slow motion." I would see 90 year old people out in public and think, they feel better than I do. By far, the worst headache. On occasion, I was in so much pain, I was sure I was dying.

On a positive note, I always believed I was going to get past this and feel better. Something had to work. Didn't it?

Next week, I'll share other things I've tried, but today I wanted to share with you what my doctor tried for the first time last week.

I received Botox injections. It will take 2 weeks before I notice any difference. I'll share more about this when I get to this part of the story. But, I'll be sure to let you know as soon as I can tell it's working.

Thank you so much for joining me today. I'd love to hear from you.

Take care,

Cindy :)

photo credit: <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/zionfiction/7484820084/">r.nial.bradshaw</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/">cc</a>

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

My Hidden Pain

I haven't posted in a while. I don't like blogging. I never have. I rather live in my imaginary world of fiction, where my characters come to life in my head. And yeah, they really do. :)

I've always been told... write about something that can help others. Something that will benefit them.

That's what readers want right?

Well, that explains why I don't blog. What do I have to say that will help others? Nothing that I can think of.

So, I thought why not explain why I haven't been posting. And maybe even take it a step further and possibly get some help for myself while at the same time helping someone else.

Here goes ...

Three years ago, this month, I began a journey that I never imagined and never believed would happen to me. Before you jump to the wrong conclusions, I don't have an incurable disease, praise the Lord. I am, however, enduring something that has made me realize how wonderful I felt before this all started.

Please forgive me for not revealing what I'm talking about yet. I'd love to tell you my story in the order of how it happened to me.

I hope you'll join me as I share some of the things I've tried and if you have experience or any ideas or if you're also seeking help, you'll share in the comments and maybe together we can find a solution and take our lives back.

I'll be here Tuesday to continue with Part 2. Hope to see you then.


Hidden Pain-Part 2

I'm so glad you came back.

I've been on this journey alone for much too long.

My first symptom started three years ago; a tingling sensation on the left side of my head. I would run my fingers through my hair, thinking maybe a bug was crawling on my scalp. It was that feeling of when your hand falls asleep and then slowly comes back to life. It wasn't really a pain, at least not yet.

That lasted for several months.

By February, I was in the doctor's office. Something was wrong. The tingling sensation remained, but there was an undeniable ache to accompany it. I didn't want to take any chances, I mean, this is my head we're talking about. What if something was really wrong?

The doctor recommended a Cat Scan. It came back normal.

Yes! That's wonderful news. But what about the pain?

The doctor started me on my first prescription. Just something a little bit stronger than an over-the-counter Tylenol.

Okay, maybe that will help. But unfortunately, it didn't. It was as if I was taking nothing at all.

Things went from bad to worse.

Tomorrow is an important day for me, because my doctor is trying something new. And I'm believing this is going to work when nothing else has. Join me in praying that this could be my miracle.

Join me, next week, for more of my story. And if you have experienced any of the same symptoms I'm describing, please leave a comment. I have yet to find anyone who has the same symptoms as me. I would love to hear from you.

Have a wonderful day,