The double edged sword; rebounding

Avoiding the painkiller-overuse rut in migraines

Those pain pills you think help your migraines? Take too many and you could make them worse. Overusing painkillers can spin migraine patients into a rut, spurring more headaches that in turn require more pain medication. A very unlucky fraction even get what's called chronic migraine, where they're in pain more days than not, and new research suggests certain prescription painkillers, including narcotics, increase that risk.


Yes, for those of us with chronic migraines, sucks to be us. Rebounding on meds can be from narcotics (the most often refered to), but it can also be OTC meds, anti-inflammatories and triptans. Everything you use, can cause rebounding. Narcotics are said to be one where it occurs most often. I try to use the three day a week rule, nothing for more than three migraines out of the week. And this works well, except for hormonal migraines and status migraines. But the best plan, is finding an effective preventative.
FDA adds suicide warning to epilepsy

The Food and Drug Administration announcement comes almost a year after the agency first said patients taking the drugs have a slightly higher risk for suicide than those taking dummy pills.

According to the new language, only about 1 in 500 patients face an increased risk of suicidal thoughts and behavior while taking the drugs. The new warning emphasizes that the risks are about the same among all antiseizure drugs.



I am a little suprised it was not already on there. Some of those meds to affect the mood, and if it affects to mood in any way, then it can cause suicidal ideation and incidents. With most of the ones I am on, it is more a positive, or maybe even hypomanic side effect I get. You have to weigh the pros and cons of every med. Naturally any adverse affects on the mood

Acupuncture beats aspirin for chronic headache: Scientific American

All I have to say is that this is hardly surprising. A great deal of things beat OTC aspirin. In this case, acupuncture would be a substitute for a preventative. To decrease the severity and frequency of attacks, not to abort an attack. It is something I have always wanted to try, but unfortunately not something I have access to in my area. This is the sort of treatment where you have to be careful of who you choose for the treatment; certifications and even recommendations.

Acupuncture beats aspirin for chronic headache: Scientific American

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I thought butterbur was for skin? learn somthin every day...

Standardized butterbur extract Petadolex®—herbal approach to migraine prophylaxis


The development of a standardized extract of the rhizome of butterbur (Petasites hybridus) has led to a new clinical approach to the management of migraine headache. Two clinical trials with a standardized CO2 extract (Petadolex[R], Weber & Weber International GmbH & Co., Germany) have successfully demonstrated the extractis ability to safely and effectively reduce the frequency and intensity of migraine headaches.....

... The leaves, rhizome, and roots of butterbur contain a mixture of eremophilan-type sesquiterpenes consisting primarily of petasin and isopetasin. (4) According to phytotherapy textbooks, petasin and isopetasin have both spasmolytic and analgesic actions. (5) These active constituents also inhibit leukotriene synthesis, which may also contribute to butterburis antispasmodic and anti-inflammatory actions. (6)





FindArticles - Standardized butterbur extract Petadolex®—herbal approach to migraine prophylaxis
Townsend Letter for Doctors and Patients, Oct, 2002, by Donald J. Brown

Apply directly to your head... right on that migraine spot


Yeah, found that super annoying, migraine inducing commercial on u-tube. So I thought I would inflict on you how annoying it is. Nevertheless, I have not tried the product, so it may very well do something good (some of those topical treatments with eculystus for example are nice). I'm just saying, so very annoying. Anything is worth a try, even though I do hold this commercial against them.

Miles for migraines Walk or Run


This is great news. Always throught there should be a walk for migraines (or FMS too really) for awareness and now there is. Miles for Migraines.

It is in the states, so will not be getting there myself. But still go if you can, donate if you can. I gave a bit myself. Every bit counts.




Date and Time: December 7, 2008. Start time is 9 a.m.

Location: Start begins at 55 Music Concourse Drive between the DeYoung Museum and the California Academy of Science in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco, CA.

Miles for Migraines Site


Rhymes with eggplant... Telcagepant!

In this article in Healthy Daily it discuses a new migraine abortive. Sounds exciting really. New research into the anatomy of a migraine has led to different angles to attack the problem.

Telcagepant is from a different class, called calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) antagonists. It's believed that brain concentrations of CGRP are elevated during a migraine. CGRP antagonists don't seem to have blood vessel narrowing properties and, therefore, may not carry the same cardiovascular-related risks as triptans.


the pain and associated symptoms of migraine were thought to be caused by problems in brain blood vessels. But over the past 15 years, research has begun to change our understanding of the causes of migraine. New studies suggest that migraine may instead be a disorder of the nervous system. Certain small chemical messengers in the brain, including one known as calcitonin gene related peptide (CGRP), have been identified as potential mediators of migraine pain. New research is providing insight into the cause of migraine.
kivitv article


This new abortive med will provide some welcome relief to people who cannot take triptans, or people like me, where the breathing constriction and heart side effects are problamatic. I had thought it would take forever to get to market, but looks like it may be sooner than I thought.

"One potential benefit of the new CGRP receptor antagonist class of acute migraine treatments is the absence of vasoconstriction, a liability of the triptans, which may allow for the safe administration of telcagepant in patients with migraine with cardiovascular disease," the study authors wrote. "However, such patients were excluded from the present study because of the contraindication for zolmitriptan, and further studies are necessary to determine the safety of telcagepant in patients with cardiovascular disease. Additional studies are also necessary to assess the long-term efficacy and safety profile of telcagepant in patients treating more than one migraine attack." The study was published online Nov. 25 and in an upcoming print issue of The Lancet. Preliminary results from the trial were presented in June at the American Headache Society's annual meeting, in Boston.-Healthy Daily

Cafergot

One way to test a new abortive is during peak migraine week of the month... as in, nasty killer hormonal migraine week. Any negative side effects will crop up from using an abortive for the maximum amount per week. I did not really notice much of a negative effect. No sudden abrupt heaviness in the chest, breathing problems and astham attacks. I have been getting chest pain, but more that vascular constriction chest pain rather than the I-cant-breath-chestpain, or the angina chest pain. Kind of a side effect that does not overtly worry me after years of experience with triptans. The other side effect that was quite noticeable is the sort of light headed buzz that comes with this, so you don't really want to be rushing around right after, and if you do, your heart hammers hard. Any medication that makes you a little woozy you gotta watch. The third side effect is the most troublesome and potentially dangerous. Last night, after taking only two (out of the potential six) tabs in a day I went to bed incredibly tired. I woke up not breathing... not gasping for air, or choking... just not breathing. I woke up suddenly trying to take in a breath that simply was not there, adjusting my position took in a deep but labored breath and felt fine. This happened twice more before I got up. I got up because by then I was more awake and freaked that I might not actually wake up not breathing and simple not breath, and focusing on your breathing when your trying to sleep really takes a person out of the sleepy zone. Got up for a bit, went back to bed and just could not get to sleep, breathing was all heavy and raspy. When I did fall asleep I assume it was all good from there. I have been taking the doctors advice and taking asthma meds prior to the triptan and that maybe why I did not notice any difference in my breathing before, and maybe just did not have enough asthma med in me last night, or the laying down factor worked against me. Either way, now have to be extra cautious to see if this will happen again. Since I am in the midst of a hormonal migraine stretch I have not had a break in these migraines long enough to wait 25 hours to switch to the Axert. And because of the severity of hormonal migraines, I can't really depend on T3s to help during the day, although they are fine to help limit my use of a triptan, they simply do not cut it on their own. I anticipate the PMS migraines to decrease in the next few days. These PMS migraines are the worst, because of the duration and severity you really are maxing your meds to the limit and walking a fine line to a rebound... but thankfully I usually juggle pretty good, at least, for this week long stretch (as opposed to pre-preventive lucky to have a migraine free day a month stretches in the past). It always makes for a rough week a month. So side effects that aggravate asthma are pretty much common, as you lose that balance you maintain for the rest of the month.

Cafergot

Cafergot is an ergotamine abortive. Old school really. I took it the first time today and did not have the 'i cant breath side effect' so that is a good sign. Did well with the migraine which is good cause I needed a break from the T3s. It caused some nausea, but not so much when you take it with an anti-nausea med. In other words, good, cause I would like to maintain this plateau of health I have achieved and need a triptan to do that, preferably one that does not make me triple my asthma med to keep up with the breathing problems.

Migraleve

I would like to share a OTC med I discovered while in Scotland called Migraleve. It comes in two variations; the pink and the yellow. The pink is designed to treat migraine pain as well as nausea and is what you would take first at the sign of a migraine. The yellow is similar, but without the nausea treatment and is designed to take if the pink one does not work. The pink has Paracetamol (which I believe is Tylenol or a variation there of), Codeine (which why while over the counter a person cannot purchase too much and certainly should not take regularly. However, only 8mg rather than say 30 as in the case of T3s) and Buclizine (which is an antihistamine with anti-nausea properties). I often find taking Tylenol put with a mild opiate pain killer works better, more mild on the system. In this case, with the anti-nausea agent I think this pill would be effective, more effective than say taking extra strength Tylenol and better on the stomach than combining Tylenol with an anti-inflammatory. Thus if you cannot take a triptan, but do not want to take a strong pain killer then a couple of these would do the trick... better than anything else I have seen on the market. However, they are not on the market here in Canada, so it is either have someone send me some or purchase online.

Zopiclone

I am all for sleeping pills. With FMS I have always had unrestorative sleep, delayed onset insomnia and frequent night time waking. Sleep deprivation is not good on the body and so not good for chronic migraines. So when my doc prescribed Zopiclone for insomnia, in order to help with the chronic migraines, I was very glad. I never found it to be a strong medication, all on its own. Maybe a good 4-5 hours of sleep, no morning grogginess and I would fall asleep within an hour after taking it.

Yet I wonder if the side effects of this med may be making me have more sleeping problems. One being that whole night time twitching spasm thing... like super intense restless leg syndrome. I would just be falling asleep when my leg would twitch or violently kick, waking me up again. Or my shoulder or my neck. Can I blame that on a side effect? Who knows, just know I did not do that before, but have been for at least a year now.

And I get the most terrifying and realistic nightmares. I never had nightmares before, but these are different than any normal nightmare anyway. They feel very real, are often in the scene of my home, with a context that could be real. A presence in the room, an embrace, oppressive darkness or being attacked by something invisible. And terrifying. I often become aware I am dreaming, mostly because it feels so wrong. I often wake myself up violently and can't get back to sleep. Often jerking awake like tearing yourself out of sleep paralysis. I have been told I am restless in my sleep, making noises and kicking and such. In some cases these dreams are very close to a hallucination, where I am more awake than asleep.

It is not a permanent solution by any means. But some sleep is better than no sleep. And, well, those night time migraines are torture... nothing like wallowing in such pain all night only to have to go to work in the morning.

Had to go to the ER...

Well, I did not have to, but I thought I should. I thought I should waste three hours in a waiting room instead of working. That is so much my perfect day. *weary sarcasm* Anyway, this is the story... Before we left Glasgow I had a monster migraine (one of those extremely motion sensitive hard to kill types), which made things a painful haze really, but I was thankful it chose to hit on the very end of my vacation and really inevitable it was going to come. But then at home jet lag hit me hard. Messed up my sleep schedule and such, which of course is begging for another migraine. And so I had a migraine Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and today. And as usual when I get so many days of migraines I did my best to balance which medications I used, but I was super tired and I must have used the Axert for more of those days than I remember. And me and triptans have a fragile relationship, but Axert has been quite good, so long as I do not use it too many days in a row.

Today I came home at lunch break with a killer migraine and lunch break is a good time to take an abortive, chill and take a little nap while it kicks in. Instead I got this ache in my chest, which I ignored. It got worse, which I ignored. I started back to work, and the pain spread through my chest, up through my back, my heart hitched and I got way lightheaded. So I diverted to the hospital. Usually I would not, because I am stupid or really rational and great at explaining away things. In this case, thought the triptan/asthma thing was acting up and it would go away soon enough.

But a couple weeks ago I had over exerted myself and had severe chest pain in the evening that was very troublesome, which I had ignored, and it happening again did not seem like a good sign. So I went to the hospital and sat in the parking lot for ten minutes debating whether it was worth my while... the piercing pain and heaviness in my chest convinced me. But it was not worth my time and I figure I could have blundered through work fine. I waited in the ER from 12 pm to 2:30 before I got in, with slow heavy breathing. Took my puffer a few times and the pain began to diminish. The migraine on the other hand, ironically not killed by the abortive, got quite a bit worse.

I saw a doctor, who said he suspected it was an adverse reaction to Axert (given it has happened before, pretty much what I was thinking), but wanted me to have an EKG anyway... which was rather moot, since neither I nor he thought my heart was the problem, and even if it had been, I would have died in the waiting room by then. Chest pain means EKG, even though in my case I thought asthma related chest pain meant that puffer thingy (which would have helped the whole trouble breathing thing). So I wait for this and then I wait some more. And by 3pm I had been debating a while about leaving, as the migraine was getting worse and I needed to get back to work. I mean if I can breath (mostly) and treat the migraine in a different way, what is the point of being there? Right? So I tried to leave and I guess they do not like that, liability or something I suspect. And the doctor was all like 'we are ready for the EKG now' and I was all like 'how long will it take'. Silly, I know. And i was not cranky or coming off as such, I was pretty much dizzy, tired and just wanting to go back to work. But I gave in and had the EKG. Had to have the nurse help me into this gown, that was one piece with snaps... like a crazy puzzle to mock sick people.,, which provides the illusion of modesty but they take it off anyway, so rather silly.

My EKG was fine and so the doctor concluded it was in fact the Axert. I agreed, but queried. I said can I keep taking it? And he said I could, but if I had this reaction again, no. And I do not like that at all. Because I need a triptan... as in Need. And I am running out of ones to try. Now I had assumed this reaction was asthma related. A good correlation to make since I had never had breathing or angina problems prior to asthma when using triptans. And it is more of a causes shortness of breath, which triggers asthma thing. So even once I treat the asthma with an inhaler, still left with the heaving feeling and troubles breathing. And I asked whether asthma can cause chest pain and he said no. Which confuses me. Since now I have no idea what causes the chest pain and when to take my inhaler. He said an asthma attack is characterized by wheezing, which I knew, not chest pain... maybe chest tightness. So chest pain, which has got to be chest wall pain or something, is from the Axert alone. But mighty bad chest pain. Which the inhaler does not stop. So nothing to do about it really. The nurse was way helpful with this by the way. She suggested I rest after taking the Axert until the pain goes away. I was resting and the pain did not go away. And the idea of an abortive is that I could take it at work and keep on going, not take it and rest for an hour. So this was all futile. And still have no idea why an adverse reaction would cause these symptoms or if in fact I should worry about these symptoms at all. I actually don't worry about them. I know angina pain and this is not it. So it is not like I think I am about to keel over. I do want to know if it is something I should worry about, due to asthma, since I don't know when to worry about that. And the whole shortness of breath vs asthma attack is tricky. I mean, I know on Amerge it was like having a 24 hour asthma attack, which using the inhaler every couple hours did help me breath better but did not fix the problem. Clearly all triptans are causing breathing problems and some cause some degree of chest pains and some cause angina pain.

Anyway, I went back to work and no one had known where I was, and were understandably concerned. I had phoned my extension, as that was the only number I could remember, and left a voice message no one had found, so that was pointless. So I finished up the day taking T3s to battle this killer migraine, which I still have. And not sure what to do about the chest pain, which I also still have, but minor. And not sure what to do about the breathing problems, if they are not asthma related. So I feel like crap really. But I think the triptan should be out of my system completely soon enough. And hopefully a good nights sleep will take care of the migraine. The next time I take the Axert will have to be at home, so if it does cause a similar reaction it will not screw up my entire fricken day. I rather hope it is a jet lag, lack of sleep, too many migraines in a row thing, rather than I cant take any more of a triptan I need to function sort of thing.

Anyway, I have decided this sort of reaction to a med is more of a see my doctor right away thing rather than a pointless ER visit thing. Anyone can say, 'if it happens again, don't take it anymore'. Not that I will listen exactly. I mean, minor chest pain and minor shortness of breath would be fine, as long as it meant I had no migraine. I am rather ticked after all that, the stupid abortive did not work either.

In Glasgow

Well it is abit into our trip now and things are going smoothly and we are having a blast. I am dragging Martin to every historical site around. Funny enough I had no jet lag at all, cause when you take in the time difference, it actually set me to a normal sleeping pattern... as in tired at night and up in the morning. The plane ride actually gave me a migraine and made my chest ache, but other than that I have had no troubles really. Some easily managed migraines is about it. And it is always cloudy here, which obviously I like. I think the Lyrica must actually be doing something for the FMS pain, cause there is no way I could trek across a city and up hills and through castles before without being slowly crippled by pain. The asthma has also been pretty good, considering I keep forgetting to take my inhaler. Although when we were climbing the hill to Sterling castle I needed a puff and that night my lungs ached with a pretty nasty pain, so maybe too much exersize for me without taking more meds. So all and all, I have been able to really enjoy myself.

Now that the beast is tamed go after the menstrual related migraines

Another recent study examined the relation
between the menstrual cycle and migraine characteristics.
Migraine headache was reported to be significantly
more severe, disabling, and frequent during the menstrual
intervals of the reproductive cycle than during
the midluteal or midcycle intervals.


Treatment options- an interesting information package regarding treatment protocals.

Those of us with menstrual related migraines so know what he is talking about. Most women are not pleased with the whole process as it is; PMS, bloating, mood swings and cramps. Not fun by any means and can be severe. You add in migraines to the mix and it is dibilitating quickly. Nausea, vomiting, severe migraines that sometimes are continuous for days and harder by far to treat.

Those of us with chronic migraines know migraines come mild, moderate, sever and crippling in regards to pain... and even sometimes without pain but many symptoms. These hormonally triggered ones come in severe and crippling. Such that it is pretty darn easy to tell all the times I have gone to the ER for a migraine I could not kill and was killing me, it was these ones.

Long before my migraines became chronic, they were exclusively these hormonal migraines, or pure menstrual migraines. And still I have a hard time managing them. They hit so fast, so painful and with other symptoms that make me feel like I have the flu. Without any treatment I used to have them so bad I could go from upright to excruciating pain in 2.5 seconds.

For me, things had improved when I was put on a triptan that was not in pill form, but rather something that got into me fast before I became too ill. Likewise, an anti-inflammatory that was rapid release, for the severe cramps but also for the migraine treatment before and after the hormonal cycle.

However, what is a girl to do without anti-inflammatories? The last time I slipped and used on (see my posts below) I was so sick I was vomiting blood (that sounds really bad... and I suppose it cant be good, but seriously was not as bad as it sounds). So, really, a no no now. Which means I end up juggling medication and often using too much just to get through it. So better off than with nothing, but this is a monthly battle and I need an effective strategy. I was thinking of doing the one where you take a triptan ahead of time and for a few days as a preventive strike, but will have to ask if the triptan I am using can be used so. The preferred one I have heard mention is Amerge... but unless I want continuous breathing problems not an option for me.

What good timing

I am feeling so much better, now the preventaive plus glasses are working, and stomach virus over. And perfect timing since holiday to Scotland is coming up soon. Now, I am not the best traveller at the best of times, so you want to start off in good shape to begin with. And then pack like a hundred little things that you might need just in case. And reading my Scotland to Dummies. Should be good.

Conversation with my migraine

I rule

You suck

I cause mental fog until you cant think straight. Even can't speak.

I get....uh... rounds that thing that causes the haxyness... what?

I give you debilitating pain

Ouchy, ouchy AHHHHHH. You win. I beg for mercy

Sorry, right out of mercy. Suck it up.

You suck

Victory is mine!

Finally, feeling up to par

The nausea has decreased for the most part. If that was a virus, then so not a fun one. Could be that one from bad meat that has been in the news, since there was certainly the right symptoms, severity and duration. If it was because of the stomach inflamation and that one measly anti-inflammatory I took two weeks ago, well, so learned my lesson.

Migraine wise I have been feeling awesome. Two days in a row without a migraine, and the few days before that nothing that could not be handled with one Axert. So Lyrica dosage good and apparently wearing glasses also good.

Still I have had to deal with the migraine aura haze for the two days I did have a migraine, which normally is just annoying. But we are very short staffed at work, on both sides of the office, which means I am three times as busy on mine. I have not had a moments break in the last four days, just constant work. Makes the day go by very fast, but when the sludge of a migraine aura hit, I did make two easy mistakes, which were not so easy to fix. I suppose it must be shocking considering I am usually so perfect. Still quite annoying when you have to spend the time fixing an error like that, when you are insanely busy as is, and very bizzaro errors to make as well.

And because I have been ill I have been quite dehydrated and sleepy, but not sleeping well. So today I was a bit blurry in the head this morning and like usual when I get morning grogginess I lose my ability to tell time. Because I no longer have to worry about the Lyrica issues in the morning this means I actually wake up well before I have to get up.. as the sleeping pill wears off about five hours after sleep and after that I do not sleep deeply. So no getting up late problems. I kept waking up thinking it was later than it was. Then the last time I misread the clock, thought I was running late, rushed my butt off to get to work... only to find out I was an hour early. Once I was there it felt rather silly to leave and its not like I did not feel awake, so I stayed. I suppose working an extra hour unpaid is not much of a sacrifice all things considered. And I was able to get some extra work done. Still, felt really stupid about it. Stupid alarm clock.

Hmm... surprising this does not happen more often

Car crash explained by migraine. Ignoring the sparkles, warps and blotches of light, a migraine aura can cause some visual problems. Double vision, blurred vision, hazy vision, fatigued eyes, tunnel vision, problems with depth perception. Plus, any problems you have with your eyes can get worse. Plus sometimes you forget the rules of the road, or confuse left with right, brake with gas. So, amzaing we are not all crashing into trees. Some days you just do not drive, which is just common sense. But these problems can be sudden. Personally I seem to be accumulating different shades of sun glasses and perscription glasses witn anti-glare, anti-fatigue and such.

So far the only thing I hit with my car was the house... which is a rather big stationary object, but my brain was all confused. I did not realize I was that close to the house, until the scraping noise... then realizing I was scraping against the house I messed up trying to correct this... and thus snapped my mirror right off and gouged a hole in the stucco stuff of the housing.

Other than that, I just have issues with clarity of vision which I use glasses and specs for. Then all that remains is the occasional confusion. And my inability to tell left from right, which seems to be a permanent neurological issue now. I think 'right' and go 'left'. I point right and mean left. Someone says go right, I go left. Unless I think about it, and move my hand 'right handed, right side'. Fun stuff.

Hypomania, mood swings and manic migraines.

Hypomania pretty much describes a manic migraine aura to a T. So I suppose 'mood swings' within a migraine aura are quite the neurological phenomnia rather than say, a normal response to pain. I have always said that depression is inevitable with chronic pain. Who would not get the occasional bout of true depression with unmanaged pain? I would find it odd if someone did not. So I have never thought of it as a symptom on its own, rather a side effect of pain. But, you have to be aware of the deep swings that can come before, during, after a migraine... and you are aware they are too intense, too unfounded, to be normal. Those ones are from the migraine neurlogical mix, not from coping with chronic pain. Which leads to the manic migraine. You are also aware of its furious intensity. The overt chattiness, unrealistic good mood, hieghtened energy and productivity. I have never found that elated mood and nervous energy to be a bad thing. Helps you get through the day. But it is abnormal. A reserved person like me does not get that chatty normally. Nor do I shake with repressed energy and edginess, usually. Perhaps the worst would be the spontaneous, ill decisions... which makes for some ackward moments afterwards. I do have an amped up sex drive, just never attributed that do the mania side of the scale, and rather like that.

I wonder at times how people percieve me. Full of humor certainly. Witty sometimes. Other times nervous and shaky. Sometimes forcing a smile, literally, because my mouth twitches. And I get to that edge where it is just a swirl of thoughts and actions, which may be true mania but without the delusions, right before the migraine hits. But the elation makes the migraine pain seem seperate, or motivating me to do Things. Wierd. But does that mean people see me as a nervous excitable person? Or do they see the reserved, respectful, polite person who does not like to be the center of attention and rarely likes company at all? And so people cannot see 'me' beyond the migraines, because they either see the pain in me, in my behaviours, or the befuddled migraine me, or the hazy migraine me or the manic migraine me. It shades every impression made of who I am.

And then I wonder who I really am. If migraines so affect my personality, such that some of my normal behaviors change, then it is changing me. And since all those migraine highs and slumps are a constant thing, then how can I say they are not me now.

The Nausea, vision and discomfort

I cannot comprehend a person can be so nauseated for no reason. No reason I can fathom. I have been feeling absolutely ill the last few days, not as violently ill as last week, but constant. Prevents me from having any desire to eat, and when I do, well, I regret that imensely. A whole lot of tums. Anti-nausea meds. And still not much relief. Since, migraine wise, I have been all right, I have to assume I might actually be sick with some minor but insanely irritating virus. Or my digestive sysmtem is still ticked I took one anti-inflammatory, which I suppose is the more likely. Either way, sometimes the nausea gets intense. I almost felt like I would pass out last night, swooning from pure nausea.

My specs seem to be helping. In fact, they are rather stunning. Because of the design, some anti-fatige something or other, they seem to diffuse light, so that my light sensativity is greatly diminished. Everything is so very sharp and defined. Most amazing would be that is gives me depth perception, something I had not realized was all that bad, but man, you notice with these specs. Such a mild script, not even necessary, but with my eyes, so strained, they help imensely. So they help with the whole pre-migraine, posibly even helping with some triggers from the eye strain and light sensativity. But they do not help with nausea, not at least until I get used to them I suppose... so my balance is off and sometimes I turn my head and the world tilts with me.

Job interview, migraine fog and bad word days

I find bad word days to be annoying... like my brain is stuttering and simply cannot find words. Which leads to trailing sentences, inability to name objects and word substitutions. Word substitutions can be quite amusing and you have to wonder how the brain came up with the choice, as semantically totally off the mark but rhythmically rather similar. Half the time people hear what they expect you to day and don't even catch it when you say something similar, but when they do, not a big deal and even worthy of a giggle or two. Inability to name objects just makes conversations a little longer as you use descriptors to describe the common place object your brain forgot the name of. Trailing sentences, when your brain forgets what it was saying or how to say it, can be a little more problematic. I tend to shift the conversation, or what I was saying, or where I am looking, in order to jump start it back on track.

Today was a bad day for the verbal migraine symptoms, more so when you consider the wonderful mind dulling effect of Lyrica. It meant a lot of typos, bit typos where while I knew what I wrote, no one else would be able to (unless they know short hand, because I tend to omit the vowels for some reason) and I actually forget how to spell, which means a lot of spelling like it sounds. So I tend to ask someone how to spell their name when making an appointment as to avoid errors... which can be amusing in itself if my focus is so off I forget their name the first time they said it and they spell out 'SMITH' for me, giving me a look like I'm a moron, to which I usually reply with a wide grin and 'Ah, just like it sounds'.

Anyway, today I went for a job interview for a job that is exactly what I am looking for... all the ideal components in environment, company policy, activities and location. While I am not actively looking for a job, when an opportunity comes in my area that suits my needs, and my current work situation so unnecessarily stressful, why not go for it. I debated doing so and could have missed the opportunity altogether, but after talking it over with co-workers and consider the fact my current work environment is not really on the up-swing anytime soon... I thought I had best go for it. Normally I do quite well at interviews, but keep in mind this was after work and it is a non-migraine abortive day for me, and a bad word day ta boot and what you get is a rather haphazard interview. I mean, I got my point across, but it took my brain the long way to get there, with a few pauses and such. Usually more on the articulate side and not the impression I want to make, first impression wise. What a missed opportunity if my brain faltering, stuttering med fog makes a difference between me and someone else equally skilled. Thankfully, I am skilled, which helps. Qualified, which helps. Over educated with an obscure degree in philosophy, which while does not help, does not hurt... ah, looks good on paper? Plus the lack of people in these parts. All work to my benefit. It was not as bad as it could have been. I was a bit off, but this employer knows a little bit about being a bit off because of anti-seizure meds, so thank goodness for that. Not everyone understands the array of side effects that come with those things. I naturally informed her of my medical leave and my altered hours, and my problem with Lyrica, precisely in the mornings. Now that my meds are all settled and I am just now balancing on being able to tolerably function again it is not a problem, but said the accommodations she might need for me would likely be altered shifts for the morning due to such side effects. Which is true in any sense. A morning migraine and a new med do not mix well, not until you learn the best effectiveness and pattern. So having altered hours for a short duration, gets you through better than actually missing a whole day. And I suppose now that I am reaching my peak effectiveness (dang asthma for wrecking it) it actually is good timing to start a new job. As I recall I started my last job at a similar time, had found what worked for me and was good to go. Until the asthma... man I hate asthma.... I would not if it had not completely mess up my migraine plan and system.

Point is, it could go either way. Just wish she had seen me at my best. Because of course I think this job would be ideal and fun. It is a new branch, a small branch, which sounds exciting to start a new job at the beginning, when we are all choosing how to change things as they need be, get all organized. Sounds great. So cross your fingers for me, my friends.

Migraine Inhaler

New migraine abortives are big news in the chronic migraine world. Check out This article on Migraine Connect about a migraine inhaler. Faster acting abortives are always to be desired, it was just a matter of time before someone devloped this sort of release system. Likely, with the whole asthma thing and tritpan causing asthma thing, this will not be my thing. But still, good news.

"To hate, to love, to think, to feel, to see; all this is nothing but to perceive." - David Hume

Existence is perception. Everything is relative, including time and space. I of all people, should be a firm believer in this. Why, you ask? Well, because being in pain is different than Being in pain, as in there is no being without pain. Of course the pain is There, isn't it? Without any behavior give aways you would not be able to tell I am in pain, but I percieve it and so it is real. You do not, so it is not real to you. Yet, the pain itself... For Fibromyalgia it is not even any injury to the muscles, it is just a misfiring in the brain, where it constantly gives the signal of pain, without injury. Oh, that fiesty brain mocking me with experiences of pain. Similarly, with migraines, one often asumes pain is the migraine. However, pain is but a symtpom and your brain itself does not have nerves to experience pain, but, man, does it ever make a show of its over activity.

Migraine are full of phantom sensations. I see the sky raining with sparkles of white, golden or violet lights, or so sparked up it looks like a grainy photo. Clearly that is not actually there, but it is what I percieve to be there. In fact, when I was younger and the visual snow was mild, I thought it was normal. I asked my brother what those sparkles you sometimes see in the sky or against a bright background were. He said, he did not know, but saw them too. Therefore reality was confirmed by someone seeing what I saw, but my brother (we now know) is crazy, er, I mean he gets the occasional silent migraine. I used to see those halos around people, in particular a sort of dancing flame of light on their head, and in my teens, I speculated that it was their aura. And maybe it is, I would not be able to tell an aura from the rest of the neuological illusions. I doubt my own perceptions and is easy to doubt them, most people do not doubt there.

And so my eyes decieve me, because I must go on what everyone perceive as to be classify as real. And no one sees all that lightworks. There for not real. But if reality is but my perception, then they are real, they are little alien ships sparking down to land, were we will have billions of little alien colonating in our lawn. Or maybe it is fairies, all the fairies that lost their wings plumment to the ground as little balls of light. But what about a simple color I see as blue and you see as green, which is real. My father had this god-aweful orange shirt, orange as orange can be, and he said it was red. Was he right, were we?

Perception skews how we see reality. Yet I firmly believe there is a reality, but that we cannot perieve as it truly is. As such I believe there is a true states of affairs. That space is not relative. That while with Eistein there is no true frame of reference, only many frames of reference. I believe there is a true frame of reference, using space as not relative. With Einstein we have me in a train and him on the ground. He sees me as moving and himself still. I see the world pass by and I am still, but not being a moron, I know I am moving. Anyway I will not go into the extensive debate about Einstein in this blog. Everyones realty is real, but so is the next and the next.... because perception makes it real for them. But not actually real, actually real is what is actually there.

"Esse est percipi" (To be is to be perceived)-George Berkeley


Berkeley theorized that individuals cannot know if an object is; they can only know if an object is perceived by a mind. He stated that individuals cannot think or talk about an object's being, but rather think or talk about an object's being perceived by someone. That is, individuals cannot know any "real" object or matter "behind" the object as they perceive it, which "causes" their perceptions. He thus concluded that all that individuals know about an object is their perception of it.
-http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Berkeley

And thus it is the idea if you walk out of a room you no longer exist, because you are not longer part of my perceptions. He uses god of the gaps to fill this one:

There was a young man who said "God
Must find it exceedingly odd
To think that the tree
Should continue to be
When there's no one about in the quad."

"Dear Sir: Your astonishment's odd;
I am always about in the quad.
And that's why the tree
Will continue to be
Since observed by, Yours faithfully, God."


Intriguing really. My perceptions say my reality is pain in my head, body and sparkes in the sky, and halos of light. And that is my reality. The brain is a tricky one, but percieving the world as I do, is my world. I won't even mention AIWS cause, in that case, reality is a strange thing indeed. What is real and what is not is relative to the viewer, what is actually real. But we are beings in the world, moving in the world. We are beings of perception and what is beyond that, true reality, is hidden from us and is very debatable.

Killer migraine peak

My killer migraine week peaked on Thursday and so I am on the tail end of the storm. Thursday was some type of hell though. Mostly because I woke up real early in a whole lot of pain. All very intense and specifially located pain, severely aggravated by movement. The sort of migraine peak that has very little other symptoms at that point, besides the blinding pain. The sort of migraine that cripples you before you get far enough to think about accomplishing anythihing. Plus I was out of Axert, but then, by then, I should not have taken it anyway, as I had the three days prior. And so I beat the migraine down with T3s all day long, that very long all day long. The T3s, simply enabled me to function and I could walk and move my head, as long as I make no abrupt movements and the pain just remained sharp and specifically located two inches into my brain one inch about the eye on the left side... so specific I could point to it on a cat scan if need be. And yet I was all smiles and jokes as usual, stunned and bewildered at my ability to move, think and fuction with such pain hunching in my brain... and just thanked god for the painkillers just strong enough to get me through it. Truly amazing.

And so when I woke with no migraine on Friday I was pleasantly surprised. Usually such peak pain comes with a heady follow-up. But nadda. I simply felt tired and cranky all day. Quite cranky really. Extra work load, plus short staffed, plus irritating co-worker/dictator, plus me 'helping out' others while simultanously trying to get through my own actual work... made me in a supper foul mood. As such I did not go to the pharmacy to load up on Axert, because I was tired and grumpy with pure intent on getting away from work, home to my nice cool, dark house. And I made it and this made me happy. Another week done. Yet, still guilty over the fact I failed the battle on Monday. Can't always beat that guilt not when I know how so very disapointed people are in me when I don't win the battle. And so, a little angry at their inability to grasp how amazing it is I can do what I do chonically afflicted with migraines, how utterly useless I would be without daily medication and how inevitable that all the medication in the world cannot help me from time to time. Still cannot hlp but smile, cause lately I may lose the occasional battle but I'm a winning the war. A little less Lyrica, add in some anti-nausea meds and I am better every day. So paint me optimisitic.

Migraine Expressions Book

Is Awesome! I have not finished reading through it yet but it is wonderful. The artwork is vivid and sometimes even tormented. I tend not to like poetry, or I should say know what I like. The poetry I have read so far is full of imagery and compositions that really show a connection. I absolutely love some of them. The essays, so far are very interesting. One has the perspective of a woman living with a man who has chronic migraines, which was very revealing to me... as she had described is a pain she cannot reach, cannot sympathize and must let him handle it... and that he forgets conversations, his personality is muted and he is an absence of what he was.

I have enountered people already, via the blogsphere who have there copies and everyone is impressed with it. No one has mentioned my entertaining essay "To all those with Migraines: I too share your brain cramps", on pages 28-30. It is good for a giggle trust me.

Anyway, thise does bridge that gap of personal experiences and the subjectivity of pain. I saw myself reflected so many times so far. I like that, that others know my experience, have lived it and are surviving it.





This is the
Migraine Expressions Site where you can pre-order, order, preview and check out links.

Migraine nightmares, sleep paralysis and freaking myself out

I must have been around twenty-two-ish when I had my first sleep paralysis experience, which given my persistent innate insomnia is surprizing. I had been told it was because of sleep deprivation, but really how can a chronic insomniac be any more sleep deprived than they already are? Nonetheless it is a distrubed sleep pattern. A disturbing sleep pattern indeed. In-of-itself it is bad enough. You wake up and you cannot move, you cannot speak and you are trapped there like that for minutes... thrashing without thrashing, screaming without screaming. Not fun. But when it happens a few times and you know that you will shake it off, it is not as bad. Mind you, one of my greatest fears is being in a state like that permanently as a result.

Migraine nightmares are just this occurence, but instead of in the morning, are at night, usually about an hour or so after falling alseep. And you are not immediately aware of it because at first you think you are just waking up briefly, as you do a dozen of other times a night. I don't call them migraine nightmares for no reason... I usually have a whopper of a migraine prior to falling asleep and usually the pain is the first thing I notice. Then as I try to adjust my position, the lack of the ability to move is next. Sometimes though it is sneaky and this is where it becomes a true nightmare, terrifying in its creeping sensations. I used to get nightmares when I was younger I called Dr. Jeckle and Mr. Hyde. Dreams of normal situations where a person suddenly changes, becoming this demented insane person who usually then attacked me... I needed no therapist to tell me where they came from and as time passed I stopped having them. These nightmares, or night terrors, are similar in a fashion, although I suppose the psychological cause, if there is one, would be different now. I wake up with a presence there, embracing me, holding my hands or some such thing, which is comforting and normal, usually attributed to my bf. And then I am not sure if it is the awareness that I cannot move that makes me feel trapped, the presence of a person entrapping me with not 'evil' intent but very much ill intent, or it is the irrational fear and terror I feel, that changes everything, but the shift is sudden and dramatic. I usually 'wake up' very suddenly, even violently, and unable to get back to sleep because the darkness seems to oppressive and I am freaked out.

I must say that a migraine nightmare without this feeling awake, but not awake, sleep paralysis thing is not nearly as bad. But always during a migraine nightmare, if the nightmare has the enviroment of reality, opposed to so unreal you are not disturbed, they always have a 'feel' about them. Darkness is too dark. It feels like you are being watched, or people are not acting right. That everything feels so wrong, the very wrongness of it is what begins to frighten me, more so than anything that happens, in fact usually, nothing happens except my own awareness that it is not as it should be. One example is a dream I had of my own hallway, but darker than it should be, a creeping darkness that seemed to cling to the walls and a feeling I was not alone... does not seem so bad, but it scared me awake.

Anyway, having decreased my Lyrica and thus that heavy deep sleep, I have been remember many dreams, as you do when you wake up several times at night. And since my sleep pattern is more 'normal' I, apparently, get these freaky nightmares mixed in with the whacky ones. I can totally get how these sleep paralysis hallucinations, back in the day, where considered demons. Common to those stories is waking up with the feeling of someone in the room and the sensation of a crushing pressure in the chest... I have never had the sensation of pressure on the chest, just the feeling of being restrained or trapped, while my mind shakes off the inability to move and supplies me with a nightmarish explination for why I cannot.

I usually love dreaming because I do get some real vivid ones, usually very so unreal and entertaining, usually with characters rather than myself. I find them fasinating and goofy. Migraine nightmares though, are just plain freaky, often just in their intensity, the irrational fear or terror they can have, and their mimicing of reality. Usually when I have a dream of real life, I know I am dreaming. I can lucid dream quite well, but when I become aware I am dreaming, am even changing the dream, I try not to, because I like the flow of where a dream can take you. A migraine nightmare, even though it is so unreal, it feels real. Only a few times did I know I was dreaming, usually when that sense of wrongness I get made me aware it was not real and I would then try and wake myself up. I remember in one I was talking to my bf and brother and telling them it was not real over and over.


"Sleep paralysis is a common condition characterized by transient partial or total paralysis of skeletal muscles and areflexia that occurs upon awakening from sleep or less often while falling asleep. Stimuli such as touch or sound may terminate the episode, which usually has a duration of seconds to minutes. This condition may occur in normal subjects or be associated with narcolepsy, cataplexy, and hypnagogic hallucinations.

Physiologically, it is closely related to the paralysis that occurs as a natural part of REM (rapid eye movement) sleep, which is known as REM atonia. Sleep paralysis occurs when the brain awakes from a REM state, but the bodily paralysis persists. This leaves the person fully conscious, but unable to move. In addition, the state may be accompanied by terrifying hallucinations.

Symptoms of sleep paralysis can be either one of the following or a combination:

Paralysis: this occurs after waking up or shortly before falling asleep. the person cannot move any body part, cannot speak, and only has minimal control over blinking and breathing. This paralysis is the same paralysis that occurs when dreaming. The brain paralyzes the muscles to prevent possible injury during dreams, as some body parts may move during dreaming. If the person wakes up suddenly, the brain may still think that it is dreaming, and sustains the paralysis.

Hallucinations: Images or speaking that appear during the paralysis. The person may think that someone is standing beside them or they may hear strange sounds. These may be dreamlike, possibly causing the person to think that they are still dreaming. Often it is reported as feeling a weight on one's chest, as if being underneath a person or heavy object.

These symptoms can last from mere seconds to several minutes (although they can feel like much longer) and can be frightening to the person. There may be some body movement, but it is very unlikely and hard for a person to accomplish."
Myths and facts

Odd symptoms you notice and wonder about...

Ever notice your nails are changing, or have changed, to the point it is likely a symptom or a side effect but what it means and whether it is important is hard to determine. You notice these things when you have a syndrome. Train yourself to be aware of your health, even if you do not mention it or think it is insignificant. In my case, my nails are supper soft (to the point I can flake nail dust off them), they have horizontal ridges now and are pale with the thr white moon part nonexistant on most fingers. My mother thinks I am anemic and while that may be true I cannot speculate on how or why I became so, or if it just a passing thing. Anyway, here is some nail health info:

"
Disorders that show up in the nails

Nail changes may signify a number of disorders elsewhere in the body. These changes may indicate illness before any other symptoms do. Here are some of the most common problems with nails and their association with health ailments.

Pale nails can indicate a liver or kidney condition or be the result of anaemia.

Deep blue nail beds could show a respiratory obstructive disorder, such as asthma or emphysema.

If the white moon area of the nail turns red, it may indicate heart problems.

Thin split nails may indicate the body is low in vitamin A and /or zinc.

Brittle nails signify possible iron deficiency and thyroid problems, impaired kidney function and circulation problems.

White flecks usually reflect a zinc deficiency (although in pregnant women, this can signify a calcium deficiency). White spots can also be the result of a direct knock to the nail.

Nails that broaden toward the tip and curve downward can indicate respiratory problems.

Flaking, split or chipped nails can result from a shortage of unsaturated fats, protein, calcium or silica in the diet. May also be a result of rough treatment, lengthy immersion in water or an immune related condition.

Deformed concave spoon shaped nails are a sign of iron and/or vitamin B12 deficiency or anaemia.

Flattened nails denote Raynaud's disease.

Isolated dark-blue band in the nail bed, especially in light-skinned people can be a sign of skin cancer.

Bumps on the surface of the nail may be the result of rheumatoid arthritis.

Opaque white bands across dry, brittle or thin nails are likely caused by a deficiency of complete proteins and/or vitamin A and calcium.

Missing moons at the base of the nails with brittle, soft and shiny nails may indicate an overactive thyroid.

Slate blue moons can point to either heavy metal poisoning or lung trouble.

Thickened nails may indicate that the blood is not circulating properly. Sometimes this can also be a sign of thyroid disease.

Ridges - Vertical ridges are usually the result from a calcium or zinc shortage (although can simply be a result of aging or injury to the nail). Very pronounced ridges may be caused by a fungal infection. Both vertical and horizontal ridges on fragile nails can indicate a lack of B vitamins (which predisposes the nails to fungal infection) and also low iron. It can also show kidney problems. Ridges can also indicate a tendency to develop arthritis.

White, soft and crumbly nails that are red at the base indicate fungal infection.

Loose nails Nail hardeners containing formaldehyde can cause nails to separate from the skin underneath if used frequently. This allows germs to enter. Sometimes separated nails can signify a thyroid disorder.

Recurring hangnails (peeling skin alongside the nail) often occurs if hands are immersed in water frequently. An inadequate intake of vitamin C and folic acid also makes one susceptible to hangnails.

Nail biting This habit can stem from tension, anxiety or insecurity, although some practitioners believe an underlying lack of silica can create the urge to bite.

Yellow nails can indicate internal disorders long before other symptoms appear. Some of these include problems with the lymphatic system, respiratory disorders, diabetes and liver problems. Other causes can be from smoking, chlorine from swimming pools and dyes in nail polish can discolour or stain nails. If the discolouration has occurred naturally, it is an indication of poor general health.

Pink nails indicate good circulation."

Nail info site

Allergic to Exercise

You can in fact be allergic to exercise. And if anyone asks, I have the allergy. So badly, that I will in fact go out of my way to not prove it. Check out this blog article Allergic to Exercise. I do wheeze from things like leaving the house and moving, so my allergy to exercise must indeed be strong. I would say it should be avoided just in case.

Things I am also allergic to:

1) annoying people

2) people

4) work

5) thinking too hard

6) leaving the house

And so I do endevour to avoid people, work, thinking and leaving the house... and when I win the lottery I will do so. Unfotunately, money is allergic to me.

You think I would get used to the routine...

Hormonal migraines are not a surprise... they are a guaranteed trigger. The worst by far. It is just a matter of when they begin and how long they last... or I suppose I should say 'it', because it is honestly just one big migraine. You have to juggle that fine line of medications in order to get through the work week, without rebounding or getting too ill. Thankfully with the Lyrica decreasing the daily migraines, I do not end up with a two week migraine hell from the hormonal trigger. In fact, I do not really get the intense migraines the week prior, as I usually do. I do get acute migraines during though, and with the usual bad PMS, I feel very ill from them.

And they are acute migraines, and not easy to treat. They are also very sudden, no pre-headache warning.... and my aura is not a warning since it goes haywire. The only real warning is a case of heavy fatigue Friday morning, but that just gave me one big case of the stupids for the first few hours of the day (thank god for my decreased hours at work, since this is when I would have been late, without knowing how I ended up late) And the pain is insanely sharp. It is very specific, intense, but then radiates outward, even down my face, jaw or neck. And with the Axert taking twenty minutes or more to do anything, if anything, the sudden attacks mean immediate treatment with a T3 or OTC meds, just to get to the point of the Axert working. However, on Thursday and Friday I discovered that the Axert works very well, when not used frequently, it just does not work for very long. It does not have the duration of some other Triptans, and thus does not really abort the migraines, but rather delay it a bit. Overall I 'managed' it fairly well, but it got ahead of me a few times. And with a unending streak of migraines like this, there is not much you can do, in fact you have to push yourself through any pain that is not acute so you are not over using any medication.

And so not fun when you cannot use anti-inflammatories. Sure wish my stomach would heal enough for just a little Advil or something. Naturally PMS is a moody time, but when you add acute migraines into the mix... makes me temperamental, even volatile... mostly bouts of irrational anger (which thankfully I do not voice) and bouts of heightened energy (which other than making me extremely chatty and spontaneous are not too bad). But always emotionally unpredictable, thankfully since I am not really emotionally emotive this is not a hardship to anyone else, but it does make me feel very off center.

Huh, something I did not want to know...

Here are the symtpoms of Lyme Disease symptoms... you might note some very familiar neurological symtpoms associated with migraines and well the whole list looks like FMS. I had always assumed that the one benifit of living in Canada, and freezing my butt off for half the year, is that the cold killed all the nasty bugs and it was not an enviroment for certain bugs (killer bees for one... they freak me out... and lyme carrying ticks for another. Then I read this article that a dog had ticks (what? Ticks on a dog... no way) but this ticks tested positive for Lyme disease, even in the area I live in. Then comes this article in the Edmonton Journal about a protest for misdiagnosis of Lyme disease... such that there are more people with it and it is not being diagnosed properly.

I had long since crossed off Lyme disease for a possible over all reason for all my symptoms, all my individual diagnosis. I wonder about Lupus and such... more so because I seem to be getting works and FMS is said not to be progressive. And now this Lyme disease pops up as an issue and I don't even want to speculate about it... cause apparently harder to treat if you have had awhile. And because there is an actual treatment, too much to hope for to have a condition that could be actually treated... to not have the neurological problems and muslce issues. How I wish there was such a treatment for FMS. Anyway, I thought it was importmant to bring up as a Canadian. In the states they rule out Lyme disease quite well and diagnosis it very well, but if we are not doing the same, and you have almost all the symtpoms on that list, well it would be worth asking your doctor to look into it. I might even bringing it up myself, to see if I ever was... but not sure they do not have the files from back in the day.

*Rawr* I am Frankenstein

I felt a little like Frankenstein today. Lumbering, speaking incoherently, scaring small children. But also in the sense that he is charged up with electrical energy... which is a lot like my brain, spiking with energy, causing one part to misfire and the other part to grind to a halting stop. I wish I could hit the reboot on it. I had several ice pick headaches today... brief shards of stabbing pain, which felt like an energy surge, like sticking a battery to your tongue to jump start you brain (not that I would recommend that). Poor Frankenstein, it aint his fault his neural pathways are all shot.

Wii wow

I got myself a Wii. The guys have a serious obsession with material toys. So we have the newest playstation and X-box. I had a little game cube which I played once every six months for a few days until I got bored and went back to reading. I do not have the mindset to play video games. So we got the Wii more so because it was the one system we did not have and because I was worn down until I thought it might be interesting.

It comes with a Sports game and you can play baseball, tenis, boxing, golf and bowling. But if you know anything about the Wii then you will know it is not slouching back on the couch and pushing buttons in the right sequence. No, it is standing in front of the TV, with the controler, swing and punching. So it is far more interactive. I love the bowling and just like in real life I have a wicked curve ball. I absolutely love the boxing... dodging and uppercuts... so, so much fun and hilarious to watch.

I do not know if it would count a exersize to anyone else, but for me it was a workout. I can't play for too long. I start shaking and tembling and aching... just like I would if I do any activity for long. The FMS always makes itself known that way, but it also means that I am doing something, it is a bit of a workout for someone like me and it is also fun and does not require me actually leaving the house. Since I played Saturday and Sunday, my arms and shoulders are aching and will ache more tommrorow. But I had been looking for something like this... to ease my muscles into more activity. So I love that game... it may not be the most complex, or like any other, but it wildly fun. And it is super cool.

Migraine Expressions

The collection 'Migraine Expressions' viewing my insightful and humorous article 'To all those with migraines: I too share your mind cramps' will be available mid July. I think I will buy one of the pre-order copies cause I am so excited to see what all that hard work and how it came out. The samples on the site look very good. I love migraine artwork, so it will be awesome.

Here is the site: Migraine Expressions

It'l be awesome, so buy up a copy.

Children With Migraine At Increased Risk Of Sleep Disturbances

Adults too and count me in... chronic insomnia from birth.

The study found the children with migraine were twice as likely as the other children in the study to have sleep apnea, otherwise known as sleep disordered breathing, which involves repeated arousals from sleep because the upper airway for breathing has been obstructed. Sleep disordered breathing was found in 56 percent of children with migraine versus 30 percent of children with non-migraine headache.

Severe migraine was also associated with shorter total sleep time, longer total time to fall asleep, and shorter REM sleep, which is the stage of sleep in which most dreams can be recalled.

Medical news


Migraine Increases Risk Of Severe Skin Sensitivity And Pain

An article on yet another symptom of a migraine. Although it is intersting. I get a lot of overly sensative skin, but I would assume that was the FMS, like I hurt so bad my skin hurts sort of thing.

People with migraine are more likely to experience exacerbated skin sensitivity or pain after non-painful daily activities such as rubbing one's head, combing one's hair and wearing necklaces or earrings, compared to people with other types of headache, according to a study published in the April 22, 2008, issue of Neurology®, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology.




Medical news

Migraine epilepsy

Individuals with one disorder are at least twice as likely to have the other.1,4–7 Comorbid disease presents challenges in both differential diagnosis and concomitant diagnosis.8 When diseases are comorbid, the principle of diagnostic parsimony does not apply. Individuals with one disorder are more likely, not less likely, to have the other.
Epilepsy proffesionals

This is intersting, I had no idea they were comorbid. It makes sense since what occurs with a migraine, the excitation fo neurons, is similar but less severe than what occures during a seizure. Always interesting to know what is going on in your brain. I looked up because of the muscle jerks, sometimes quite violent, which I attribute to either FMS or migraines, but wish they were not there.

The third study suggests that even though migraine and epilepsy are clearly different syndromes, they both cause paroxystic neurological phenomena. The frequency of epilepsy in patients with migraine and migraine in those with epilepsy seems to be higher than expected. They both cause paroxystic neurological phenomena. The authors suggest there may be comorbidity in both conditions. " This coexistence may be due to the episode of one, for example the aura of a migrainous attack, triggering off the other condition, that is an epileptic crisis. So, it may be that the 'migrainous illness' causes the 'epileptic illness' or the other way around. Their coexistence may be due to a risk factor which is common to both, since it has caused a cerebral lesion which is the cause of both disorders. Finally, a risk factor may have a direct effect, without requiring the intervention of an intermediate cerebral lesion to cause both migraine and epilepsy. This last possibility is particularly attractive to explain the comorbidity of migraine with an aura and genetically determined epilepsy". (3)
Attract

Migraine epilepsy is very rare, but you can see how it can happen. Which means we might want to pay attentions to some of those peculiar aura symtoms and how we are when we get them and violet muscle contractions.

Migraine chick cartoons

On Migraine Chick's blog she made these little cartoons. They made me laugh. I wanted to post on here, but that would be rude, since they are her's... so follow the link and check them out.

Hmm... uncomfortable

What an entirely ackward day at work today. Ever get the feeling that people have a secret they are not willing to tell you? And you know it is usually a bad one. I had that feeling all day today. I seriously think my job is in jepordy, no matter how I struggle play by the rules... the problem is my head disagrees and taking all those meds just pushes me to the limits, and so I disapoint and worse it looks bad. No matter that no one was willing to accomadate me when I returned to work, as a full time employee it just looks bad. Someone from another branch, that used to work at ours, heard about the two days last week I missed... which made me wonder why this is big gossip, but at least she comprehends what I am going through and recommendeds I talk to HR to save my butt. And I agree. I really, really should. Another co-worker asked if I had called in sick on Thursday, which implied the boss lady said I did not... and I did, I am sure that I did, but I cannot recall what I said, as I was all messed up and seem to be having some retrograde amnesia goin on for those two days. Anyway sucks to be me right now... nothing like ackwardness with the boss and all the staff. And a migraine to boot... a nasty visual aura hell migraine, with wapring walls, intense visual snow, fogginess, double vision and shifting white lights... that is pretty messed up even for me... maybe it is the doubling of the Lyrica... or maybe the construction we have going on in the branch. Certainly, that is kind of messing with my asthma, which explains the pressure feeling to the headache I had later, after I had taken the abortive and the heaviness to my breathing. Thnakfully, the hazy migrianes kind of give me a comforting apathy, which enables me to react without the nervous break down part.


Stumble It!

Found a good blog... for those with FMS

I really don't talk about Fibromyalgia a lot on this blog, but that is because it is just a fluctuating mass of symptoms and shifting pain. Don't get me wrong, it is the root of all evil and when several of those symtptoms rise up at once it is pure hell. But a tolerable hell, as long as I do nothing to poke the sleeping bear. While chronic migraines, well, they stop me from doing anything, including such necessities as working. I should not forget the triggers over lap, the my sensativity to light, sound, scents are all because of the FMS, and then trigger a migraine. And sometimes I am brainless because of a migriane and sometimes fibrofog... so difficult to tell the difference really. Anyway, I generally do not talk about it at all, because it is difficult to explain, people don't get it and if I can get away with 'passing' for healthy, then it is just easier for us all. It leads to a reluctance to discuss new symptoms with doctors as well, because you think it is normal for you, will go away in time, or is a side effect. We are trained pretty early to ignore discomforts and by doctors who brush of our worries as just the 'FMS' that we ourselves do not pay attention to potentially serious symtpoms. Given my reluctance to go to the ER, which started by an ER doc saying FMS does not exist, I would say I learned that lesson so well. And so have my doctors, paying a great deal of attention to comorbid conditions while ignoring the syndrome that has been there all along. Anyway, such is life. And the moral is pay attention to any abnormal health issues and at least mention them to your doctor.... for a written record and such. Or, like me, you will have six months of shortness of breath you pass off as a side effect, only to find out you have asthma.

So I found a well developed blog on FMS and added it to my link list. It looks like the author keeps up to date with the research and news. Living with Fibromyalgia

Knowing your options, when work is not one of them...

Back in the day, I was working for a company that did not have benifits and was not willing to accomadate my increasing chronic migraine issue. Understandably, I was distraught. Thankfully, my doctor at the time thought it prudent I take a leave of absence from work in order to find proper treatment. So number one when you find yourself in this spot, is having a doctor that is willing to fill out the paperwork and also believes you should have a medical leave. So without benifits from an employer you have the option, as a Canadian, to go on medical unemployment leave. It is not 100% of what you made, but it is something.

Service Canada link to medical leave

Then there is Canada Pension Plan (CPP) for peoples with disabilities. "CPP Disability is part of the Canada Pension Plan (CPP). It is designed to provide financial assistance to CPP contributors who are unable to work because of a severe and prolonged disability." This is a bit tricky though and never tried going on it myself, due to the definition on 'severe and prolonged'. I have heard it is hard to get on and stay on. However, when you use up your benifits at work, then your EI, you gotta do something. And you can apply for both medical EI and CPP at the same time, in fact you should, because CPP is a far longer process and you do not want to starve in the interm.


Service Canada CPP info

Abilities Magazine offers a great deal of information for disabilities in Canada, browse there network to find resources in your area.

WORKink is a site dedicated to working with disabilties.

So there is some Canadian content info on disabilities and medical leave. Service Canada does supply a lot of the information you need, the hoops you need to jump through, if you are looking for financial assistence.

Twisted migraine dreams

I am in peak migraine mode right now, and with work being so utterly lovely, it makes for a pain filled day. So when I get home I usually crash from migraine burn out and some feeble attempt to sleep it off. However, I don't sleep it off, if I can sleep I end up with migraine induced dreams. Today, I came home just drained and instead of going to the local fair with my bf I took a two hour nap. And as usual when I dream with a migraine, the dream has to do with pain, often expressing itself in a violent dream, a choatic dream, or lately (maybe cause of my chipper mood) dreams about intense migraine symptoms. Today I dreamed my fingers were so swollen I could not move them and then I had a severe asthma attack, dying and gasping for air as a RN arrived to think I was 'over reacting'... it was unpleasant, because it expresses how horrible you can feel without getting any help for it. Yesterday night, I had some issues sleeping all together, and then had a dream that I was rubbing my temples, cause the pain was intense, but when I pressed my figers to the temple I went blind, like my vision just slowly faded right out, and then my left side of my face went numb and melted like hot wax.. freaky (migraine blindness and facial numbness freaky at the best of times, but the whole face melting thing more so).

Anyway it was a long fricken day and I needed that sleep in the worst way. I will likely spend all weekend playing catch up on the sleep because it has been a long, painful, drawn out week and if I don't manage some recouperation Monday will be a bitch. My brain just felt like it was melting at the end of the day, as the migraine lag started to kick in and I got slower and slower... staring blankly at my computer screen for seconds trying to figure how to do what I was doing or what I was doing in the first place... and since anything I do does not appease anyone lately anyway, I suppose it does not matter much if I do it in a way they don't like. I rather felt like passing out, my vision is full of black spots, but not the aura sort... more like when I move my eyes or blink my vision is blacking out a bit... not that passing out from a migraine is impossible, been there done that. I guess what the neuro said makes sense, your body just shuts down as a defensive mechanism when the pain is too much. I say skip the passing out and go straight for the coma.

What a fricken day

I did get some good news today; my test results came out spiffy and so my stomach pain is essentially aggravated digestive issues triggered by the anti-inflammatory and because of the FMS my system does not rebound like someone else's would. So since the ulcer med is helping, I will stay on it. Other than that, the pain should simmer down as long as I watch my diet. So that is good. No bleeding holes in my belly. I will get a ultrasound to make sure everything is still where it ought to be, but he said it does not sound like anything else given the type of pain and general location. I am good with that.... pain, temporary, good. And he said my thyroid count is back on track, so the new dosage should be perfect.

What ruined my day from the get-go was a meeting with the boss lady. I understand I have missed too many days. No one gets that more than me, but let me tell you they were not fricken holidays for me. So point to her. I can't argue against the facts, but I have been doing better, and considering I was on medical leave, a snap recovery would be quite surprising. I would like my doctor to cure me of migraines (and everything else for that matter), but he is all out of 'instant cure for chronic illnesses'... rather because they would be called chronic if you could fricken cure them. I had the choice of coming back full time or not at all, with everybody breathing down my neck... and while I thought coming back full time, when I only had a half-ass treatment and a new preventative was not a brilliant idea, I was in no position to argue. So she has run out of patience with my lack in exemplary attendance. But telling me this does not help either, cause I cannot order my brain to stop tormenting me. However, apparently I will have to order my body to amp up on pain tolerance, because she is giving me the first written warning, which means I can be fired any time she wishes should I slide. And while I can nod my head and say okay sounds good to me, that also does not help me when I am sick with a blaring migraine, throwing up or otherwise ill from medications or whatever. So I have to manage to get myself to work, even if it means throwing up on someones shoes or not being able to see or hear. And today, which has been a bad migraine day such as they are, I hit the curb getting to work and then lodged my car in the nearest parking spot which happened to be a mire of mud I could not then remove myself from... tip top working condition. And this all does not piss me off, it actually made me a little teary eyed, because it is like someone is demanding I stop the sun from shining... I would if I could, but the world don't work that way. So essentially she is saying I need to suffer in silence. No option of lesser hours and such. Just be there... or not.

What did piss me off, is her saying 'What have you done to help improve your condition?' or some such crap. As if I have not heard that shit a thousand times in my life time. Well, if you exercised, and eat green beans and drink eight glasses of water maybe you would not feel so bad. If you try eating only protein or no protein, or take this exact combination of vitamins. Or... or... or. What-fucking-ever. It is always the patients fault for not feeling better. They don't pro-actively do enough to cure themselves... don't try enough randomly recommended treatments, no matter how expensive, or change their life style in specific and often contradictory ways. She of course mentioned the smoking... and yeah that is stupid, but it is a nice self destructive habit that will hopefully kill me and save me the trouble... and maybe if I did not have so much stress, as in having to work 'through' enough pain to make a grown man cry like a baby, maybe I would have a slight desire to quit smoking. Then she said if I was proactive about my health and cared about my well-being I would get rid of my cats. How dare she suggest such a thing? As if, giving away my cats, when I love animals, have no children and they improve my mood vastly, would be a good thing. It would be a very bad thing. And for what? My asthma is under control, no one knows if I am allergic to cats and the last time I had out of control asthma attacks was from a god damned migraine abortive I was using to get to work in the first damned place. It was rude. And it essentially is telling me that if I do not feel better, in any regards I suppose, it is my fault in some obscure way.... when in fact it has been side-effects, some nasty ones, that have caused a great deal of my problems lately.

And she says she has received complaints from staff. That they think I am getting special consideration for having so many sick days... blah... blah. I feel so sorry for them having to work without pain like that, day in and day out. I am oozing with sympathy. So that means, litterally will have to suffer in silence. I get that people can tell when I am in pain... I have a bit of a strained expression, a tension to my smile (as in have to force a smile and it does not hold) and maybe a wee bit pale, so often some people know and ask. But I need to perk up the facade if I am going to manage to show up everyday, or take more pain medication. Cause if someone asks how I am doing, I am just goin to say 'fine', even if it is a false fine, or even a sarcastic fine. Because if they cannot understand how I feel when I call in sick, how horrible is makes me feel to have someone cover for me, the guilt, how I am taking too much triptans just to be there the days I am.. then screw it. I will pretend and maybe if I pretend enough I will fool myself. But if I have to suffer through it, I will not suffer false sympathy.... I will not be a friggen topic of conversation, while people speculate behind my back about my health... that is why I never mentioned the FMS and never will... bias to chronic pain is a bitch.

Being moody does not help either, thus the ranting... does not make me feel better today, but maybe tomorrow.

I would love to just redirect you to the new site...

But sadly the redirect function doesn't function. I will continue to persist hitting it and see if it will eventually do something. Or s...