Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Medicine Du Jour

So what am I doing now? A lot of people ask me that. "You're not teaching?? So what are you doing?"  We are so defined by our jobs in this world, aren't we? Anyway, I have applied for SS disability. I am awaiting a hearing date, should be any time now! Fingers crossed! My girls are in school and my 4-year old son is home with me during the day. I am trying to be the best mother and wife I can and taking it day by day. That's all I can do. I'm doing all I can to get better. I saw a chiropractor for a few months with limited success. I will probably give that another whirl here soon. I have a great shrink as aforementioned in a previous post. I may try acupuncture at some point and I have plans to see an herbalist within the next month or so. I keep a journal where I write down everything from what activities I did on a particular day, activities I had to give up, when the migraine hit, when it went away, meds taken, my feelings, food I ate and so forth. Many migraineurs have food triggers. Many don't. I have been on many diets (including vegetarian, gluten-free and tyramine-free) and have (and still do) kept food diaries to try to pinpoint any food triggers I might have.  The only food trigger I have been able to find is aspartame. Give me a Diet Coke, and I'll have a raging migraine within minutes!  I am on my fourth neurologist;  I even went to the Diamond Headache Clinic in Chicago, which has been referred to as the "Mecca" in migraine/headache care. Maybe I will blog more about my experience there at a later date. I will say, now, that they almost killed me! I wish I had never gone there! I stopped making monthly trips to that hell in Chicago in December and have a new, local neurologist. (In order to avoid getting sued, let me just say, that I am not a medical professional, so I cannot say with certainty that they almost killed me, nor do I believe that all of the doctors at this clinic are the devil. I know that some of the doctors there help some people. I, personally, had an awful experience there). I have tried just about every drug out there for prevention with no success. I am currently taking 150 mg of Topamax daily for prevention, though, I will probably not be taking it for very much longer for two reasons: 1.) It doesn't work. The migraines have not lessened at all since I started taking it. I am still getting migraines every single day. 2.) The side effects are too unbearable. The Topamax makes my limbs tingly and numb (this occurs with migraine already, Topamax makes it worse!); it makes me forget words or lose my train of thought (which also occurs with migraine already!); it also makes me very tired; the only "good" side effect that it makes Coke taste gross, so I've been able to give up pop. I also take Maxalt (good old Maxalt), Zomig and Ibuprofen 800mg as abortives. The Ibuprofen is used in conjunction with either the Maxalt or the Zomig, whichever the abortive du jour is. The Ibuprofen gives it the extra kick it needs to work. The Maxalt and the Zomig cannot be taken on the same day and neither one are supposed to be taken more than two or three times a week because they can cause rebound headaches--ooops! I cannot help it; I take them more than I should, I know. I try not to take the Ibuprofen as much because it can cause bleeding and ulcers, as my mother, a nurse pointed out.I had Botox treatment done in January (18 injections in my forehead and head!). It has made no difference in the migraines so far. My right eye is still droopy, though! Isn't that great?!

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