Migraines

Two days ago I experienced one of my worst migraines to date. My migraines are triggered by my hormones, so every month I am at risk of getting them. Usually I take preventative measures such as taking pain killers a few days before my period, or if I get a lot of auras. This month I’d felt like one was at the periphery of my brain, but that it was staying away. This was until I woke up Sunday morning.

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I woke up feeling really average, so slept in a little. I got up and didn’t do a lot really, but after an hour it hit me. I noticed that my sense of smell had changed drastically (parosmia) and I suddenly started dry retching. It then hit me like a tonne of bricks to the brain. Any light entering my eyes felt like shards of glass piercings my skull. All I wanted to do was die. I was vomiting up nothing but bile, I hadn’t eaten anything. There was no way I could even get pain killers into my body by this point.

Stupidly I did not phone an ambulance, which in hindsight is what I should have done. Or at the very least get a locum doctor to come out and administer something (which I am totally assuming they can do). I did ring my friend, who brought me some codeine, though I knew it was pointless taking it at this stage as I’d just throw it back up again.

After a few hours of silent crying, screaming agony and throwing up, things subsided enough for me to be able to take some codeine and keep it in my body. It was then I was able to sleep and my brain was able to improve a little.

Today, Tuesday, I still feel the remnants of that agony across my forehead and I’m dopey and useless.

I’ve tried most over the counter and prescription medications for my migraines. My mother experienced them too and she never found relief in her life time. I’ve been told to drink a can of coke and take panadol, or use vicks or tiger balm next time, so I will give this a try. But honestly, if it’s an option, I’ve probably tried it to no avail. Menstrual migraines are caused by a drop in oestrogen levels and this is what mine are.  When I was on the pill I would skip my period for months at a time to avoid migraines, however I am not supposed to take the pill anymore because of my endometriosis and my liver tumour history. Also I found that the pill completely killed my libido, but that’s another story altogether.

Kath, I know you battle with migraines a bit, is there anyone else out there who suffers from these bloody awful things?

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~ by Fen on April 28, 2015.

2 Responses to “Migraines”

  1. I do suffer from them but I believe now that I have found the trick, with a lot of help from my doctor.

    I have in the house – paracetamol – ibuprofen – aspirin. If I feel a headache coming on, I will take paracetamol and ibuprofen together but it *must* be taken with a cup of strong tea (two teabags of Australian Afternoon) or coffee, and a block of dark chocolate. I like 70% plus and find it to be more effective.

    The caffeine in these helps the drugs to work faster. That is why they sell panadol with caffeine though it is obscenely expensive and I prefer to keep that purely for my handbag and emergencies when I could not get a cup of caffeine to go with it.

    If it feels like it is going to be a bad one I will take all three – and I can tell the difference between one that requires two vs one that requires three drugs. I tend to get the worst one on the second day of my period and that is always a three drug headache.

    For the now very rare occasion where this pain plan does not work, I have Maxalt wafers and panadeine forte. The wafers are expensive, and the panadeine forte makes my legs and arms go numb, so I prefer to avoid these if I can.

    I also get ocular migraines – the ones where you have the kaleidoscope – those are always a two drug headache and if I take it the minute I notice the kaleidoscope and then stop what I am doing eg no reading, no watching tv, I can listen to something but not watch it, the headache will never arrive now. The headache that comes with the kaleidoscope is usually so terrible I have to go to bed and stay there until it leaves.

    If I wake up feeling the way you did, I would likely have taken the three drug combo, and my experience has been 99% of the time, that cuts things off at the pass.

    If you can’t keep the drugs down, that might be a problem. If that happened to me I would use a wafer – those are absolutely magical and you just put them under your tongue but they cost $11 each so it is costly magic.

    I keep all three drugs within arms reach from my recliner and if I sense trouble, I take them and then head to the kitchen to get the coffee or tea and chocolate.

    I always make sure to have something to eat as well, if I have not managed that yet, eg a bowl of cereal. Ibuprofen and Aspirin should not be taken on an empty stomach.

    Anyway I hope this helps. Have you ever tried the Maxalt wafers? 🙂

  2. I also suffer from migraines – until you’ve had one, you have no understanding that they’re not ‘just a headache’. I have a prescription medication (Immigran) that works reasonably well if I take it at the right time but short of that, my GP always said 4 Aspros and a double espresso is just as good (it’s about aspirin and caffeine together which is what most migraine meds combine). Panadol have brought out the over-the-counter Panadol Extra which also does the same – it works.

    Anyway, it all changed for me when I got an iron infusion in December last year. I was anaemic (didn’t realise – wasn’t tired as such but migraines were increasing). Since I’ve got my iron sorted out I have not had a single headache or migraine. Miracle.

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