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  1. #21
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    Ask your doctor about taking amitriptyline every night as a preventative. Its normally used to treat depression, but it also prevents migraines!!!! (Yayyyyy!!!) Its really the only thing that works on me. I know some people that had migraines so bad they wound up in the emergency room, and never suffered another one after they started using Amitriptyline as a preventative.



  2. #22
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    Oct. 9, 2010
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    NC
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    Im tellinng ya'll BOTOX! My migraines had me in the hospital 3 times twice for DHE there were that severe. Literally bed ridden. The day I got the botox ended it all. It is BOTOX especially for Migraines done by a Neuro.
    Mitkowski Equine Services
    Love my Fjord Magni "Tigger" and my HanoxTb Frescoe "Wenny" --- My boys



  3. #23
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    Jul. 2, 2005
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    Evidence-based Guidelines Update: Pharmacologic Treatments and NSAIDs and Other Complementary Treatments for Episodic Migraine Prevention in Adults


    Google and read this recent article that reviews helpful and not helpful treatments for migraines. It was published by the American Association of Neurology, and is an assessment of peer reviewed published research.

    I read the whole thing before my appt. with a neurologist at the University of Maryland.

    My migraines decreased in frequency for 12 days/month to 7/8 when I completely stopped taking ibuprophen and tylenol. Because of this, she did not want to start with a daily preventive medication, especially since I had tried Topamax and it did not help.

    She said I could continue to take Treximet (sumatriptan and naproxan) up to twice a week if necessary since it provides immediate relief. She added in vitamin B2 and Magnesium. Also said I should get frequent massages (yeah!). Keep doing the food and weather diary to track triggers. Soy sauce may be a trigger, I am finding. See her again in 4 months.

    I am also going to add in accuputure since a review of well done studies indicated it helped with migraine.

    My experience, FWIW
    ********
    There is no snooze button on a cat that wants breakfast.



  4. #24
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    Nov. 7, 2008
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    Pittsburgh, PA
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bank of Dad View Post
    Keep doing the food and weather diary to track triggers. Soy sauce may be a trigger, I am finding.
    Soy sauce has MSG in it often, I think. So that might be it? MSG in any significant amount is insta-Migraine for me. (Like one of those ones where even when it's coming on you can tell a trick like caffeine or whatever works for you is gonna do exactly Nothing.)



  5. #25
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    Dec. 26, 2007
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    48

    Default

    I love Topamax, but do know the people who cannot deal with it have pretty horrid side effects. The worst I had was the deal with the soft drinks, but I needed to quit those any way.

    I cannot say enough wonderful things about Botox. I was in the trial study for Botox for migraines and it literally gave me my life back. For me, I got some relief the first treatment, which only lasted about 8 weeks (before FDA regulation), and then I was treated again with much better results. Gradually, I was able to stretch it out to be comfortable and nearly headache free to 10 weeks. I've just never really made it comfortably past that mark. The last 2 weeks are rough since FDA approval, but I'm still so happy since so many more people can have access to this process and have insurance cover it. I was very lucky that mine picked it up from the very start.

    The only thing I would worry about with any medication, including OTC is rebound headaches. I was in a horrid place (many years ago now) before starting the trial--basically bedridden, and tried almost everything--prescription and OTC. My doctor was fantastic, but he also explained that in trying to find relief, some of my headaches were rebound headaches caused by both Rx and OTC meds, which is a horrible cycle. The thing is, which luckily my Dr. understood, when you have that much and that kind of pain, you will do anything to make it stop.



  6. #26
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    Jan. 5, 2010
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    VA--> Washington (state)
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    just stumbled into section of the forums-- i am also a migraine patient and just went through my second round of status x 2.5 wk of living nightmare, for which i refused hospitalization this time and did the DHE injections here myself. if anyone need a rec'd of neurologists in northern va/md/dc or washington state, let me know. i have referred a lot of my own patients to various neuros in the dc metro region and was a patient there myself.

    for those who aren't doing well, i feel your pain: i have failed all prophylactic meds (topamax, depakote (i looked like an oompa loompa) verapamil, ssri, snri, tca, and more. i have used every triptan, including (my fave-- sumavel injection-- no, i actually hate it but it does work), every supplement, chiro, accupuncture, massage, PT, neuro, ortho.

    i've been on botox injection q 10 wk since april 2011 and was controlled after the 4th round, until we moved xcountry and i started a new job. =( besides eliminating my forehead wrinkles, botox has helped me be able to function again. going through all the different meds stinks since it's just an algorithm-- try this, if you fail, go this way and now try this; if you don't, well good. i have to do the same thing for my own migraine patients. hang in there....

    unfortunately, i am one of those people whose migraine trigger is exercise (and tight CO helmets). thankfully, my old trainer was wonderful about rescheduling lessons and hopefully, my new one (still looking) will be too. for some people, exercise helps migraines, others it exacerbates them.

    nice to know other people who've been through similar things too.
    And the wise, Jack Daniels drinking, slow-truck-driving, veteran TB handler who took "no shit from no hoss Miss L, y'hear," said: "She aint wrapped too tight."



  7. #27
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    Jul. 2, 2005
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    My goodness, sometimes exercise is a trigger for me too, a mild lingering headache got worse after trail riding on a beautiful Tuesday.

    Somewhat oddly, I have found that a few spoons of honey will sometimes abort the beginning of a headache.
    ********
    There is no snooze button on a cat that wants breakfast.



  8. #28
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    Jan. 5, 2010
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    VA--> Washington (state)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bank of Dad View Post
    Somewhat oddly, I have found that a few spoons of honey will sometimes abort the beginning of a headache.
    that's interesting. i haven't heard of that== wonder how it works? i know honey is naturally antibacterial & antiviral (i tell my patients to use it for nonstrep sore throats). i'll have to look that up.
    And the wise, Jack Daniels drinking, slow-truck-driving, veteran TB handler who took "no shit from no hoss Miss L, y'hear," said: "She aint wrapped too tight."



  9. #29
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    Jul. 30, 2005
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    England
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    I know that one of my triggers is low blood sugar. Wonder it that's what the honey is curing?
    Horse Show Names Free name website with over 6200 names. Want to add? PM me!



  10. #30
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    Dec. 13, 2008
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    Somewhere over the rainbow
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    Default Because I have a headache, obviously I need a pap smear

    Debilitating headaches are the absolute pits.

    Things I do, or have done, which I know help me are:
    Breast reduction surgery
    Chiro
    Botox
    Naratriptan
    Oxycodone
    Good sleep
    No helmet (not advocating)

    Today I'm starting back on hormones to prevent pre-menstrual headaches. I took birth control for several years "continuous cycling," meaning no menstruating at all. I decided to stop taking it for a while just to see where things were at, and yep!, menstruation is dumb. Very interesting process getting the new prescription though. I saw someone who was not my regular doc who informed me that my insurance requires that I get a pap smear before they can prescribe birth control, which she won't do so I need to see an ob-gyn. I pointed out I didn't need "birth control" I needed to better manage my headaches and neither birth control nor headaches are related to cancer screening. WTF? But no dice. And then, and then! I learn there is a 3 1/2 month wait where I'm currently living to see an ob-gyn.

    So Friday I get back in to see my regular doc in regular civilization and I mention the hormone thing to him. Bless his functioning brain, he immediately brings up that he regards the pap smear req as "rude" and unrelated to birth control needs let alone headache Tx's. And I'm like, "That's what I said!" He was happy to go ahead and write the script sans pap, but also offered to just take care of the pap right then. See? That's how you do that.

    So, anyway, then I go to fill the script today and (female) pharmacist acts downright alarmed that I would even think of taking active pills 365 days/yr and is flabbergasted that I didn't do the 4 periods/yr thing when I was taking the pill before. Where do the powers that be even come up with these numbers? Is there something magic about having a fake period every 3mos? She can't believe I took the pill that way for 3 years but head shakingly explains to me that I'm "supposed" to take the pacebo pills at least every 6mos.

    My beef with this is twofold; one, the whole reason I'm taking the pills is to not have a debilitating, work-cancelling headache, so inducing hormone withdrawal seems counter-productive and two, it was very plainly written right there on the pill pack that the dr's instructions were to take the active pills only. I realize not everyone is aware that the bleeding that occurs when a woman is "on the pill" is not a normal or medically necessary period. But the guy who invented the thing DID know that. I would like to imagine that in 50yrs that fact might have reached pharmacists, so what's the deal? Have I been misinformed in some way? Is the tampon lobby secretly a force rivaling the Teamsters?

    Anyway, what's good for the goose is good for the gander. Perhaps I will write to Kaiser and suggest that men who are considering trying Bupropian to help stop smoking b/c it's aggravating their diabetes must first see a psychiatrist. Oh, and get a prostate exam. 3 months from now.
    An auto-save saved my post.

    I might be a cylon



  11. #31
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    Jan. 4, 2009
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    652

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    HillNDale, I do the perpetual birth control pill regimen too. My reasons are a little different--going off for the fake period causes a major rheumatoid arthritis flare, without fail. So my doctor said "why don't we just skip the flares?" I thought that was a fine idea, and have been doing so for a couple of years.

    I might go off for a week maybe twice a year. The only reason I do it is because I will sometimes start to spot in spite of the pills, and going off for a week seems to straighten things out. Seems like the very infrequent breaks help keep the RA flares down to a dull roar. When I used to take the week-long break every three months, the flares would still hit me.

    Rebecca


    1 members found this post helpful.

  12. #32
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    Jan. 5, 2010
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    VA--> Washington (state)
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    @HillnDale: i've NEVER heard of an insurance company requiring a pap before a birth control rx. i KNOW the AAFP (american academy of family physicians) doesn't advocate requiring a pap before rxing birth control-- just to get the pap & pelvic done per acog (american college of ob & gyn) guidelines.

    that's complete bs and i'd like to see a provider show me documentation ESPECIALLY when the reason for the rx was for migraines (and you weren't pregnant, no major history of cervical/uterine/ovarian issues).

    additionally, i have patients who like getting their period as confirmation that they aren't preggo and i have other patients who take their rx straight through...esp for prophylaxis.

    tho- depending on the birth control you get & the types of migraines you have, research shows 33% chance hormones can help, 33% chance no change, and 33% chance it can be made worse.
    And the wise, Jack Daniels drinking, slow-truck-driving, veteran TB handler who took "no shit from no hoss Miss L, y'hear," said: "She aint wrapped too tight."


    1 members found this post helpful.

  13. #33
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    Dec. 13, 2008
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    Quote Originally Posted by La Chasse View Post
    that's complete bs and i'd like to see a provider show me documentation ESPECIALLY when the reason for the rx was for migraines (and you weren't pregnant, no major history of cervical/uterine/ovarian issues).

    additionally, i have patients who like getting their period as confirmation that they aren't preggo and i have other patients who take their rx straight through...esp for prophylaxis.

    tho- depending on the birth control you get & the types of migraines you have, research shows 33% chance hormones can help, 33% chance no change, and 33% chance it can be made worse.
    I concur LaChasse, it is total bs! Obviously, since my regular doc was more than willing to prescribe, that suggests it's not a requirement strictly speaking. But it's definitely the guideline. My situation is a little complicated in that I'm currently working in an area that is about as medically equipped as a remote Alaskan fishing village. No one in the local clinic was going to perform a pap smear (referred) or prescribe BC w/o one citing Kaiser policy. Whatever. I literally cannot even remember the last time I had, er, relations. I was clear that I don't mind getting it done, just thought they should prescribe while I'm waiting for the OB's canoe.

    Good point on the efficacy, though. While I was taking the BC I did get questioned about the possibility of that aggravating the headaches. Now that I've been off for 6mo, I definitely notice the premenstrual buggers but have other factors that should be causing the reduction in the chronic tension and stuff. Maybe I'll notice an uptick in frequency or manageability outside my lady times. But I'd like to run my crazy trials w/ my doc's oversight and w/o the paternal meddlings of ...whoever they are.

    Maybe next time a provider cites KP policy as the reason for w/holding or delaying Tx I will ask for documentation. I know at work the owner and barn manager use the "insurance policy" to bolster the strength and legitimacy of any and all declarations. It's gets pretty ridiculous and rarely has anything to do w/ safety. I've been finding comfort lately in passive aggressively joking about it
    An auto-save saved my post.

    I might be a cylon



  14. #34
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    Feb. 4, 2006
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    Question for fellow migraine sufferers...

    I was in an accident about a month and a half ago, where I believe I hit my head, but didn't think I did at the time. Subsequently, I've become super forgetful, and have had four of the worst migraines I've ever had. I've been a sufferer since my late teens/early 20s, but discovering my triggers helped, as did taking 600-800mg of ibuprofen, a bit of caffeine, and laying down in a dark room. With this I'm usually able to knock them out in 3-4 hours. They have now progressed to me waking up with the starts of them (like today), or lasting entire days, auras, nausea/throwing up, and NSAIDs, rest etc doesn't touch them. Plus a super nasty hangover sort of feeling that lasts into the next day! Ugh.

    1. How do you find a good doctor (neurologist??) that specializes?
    2. Anyone had a concussion that has/had migraines?
    3. Does being on B/C help even if they're not neccessarily hormonally related?

    Any insight would be appreciated. I'm going to try to get a referral to a neuro somehow (I don't have a GP or insurance), so that should be all kinds of fun....



  15. #35
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    Apr. 14, 2011
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    Does anyone have a reaction to fluorescent lighting? I became blind in one eye, partially in the other and couldn't speak for 2 hours. Went to the eye doctor and he said it's a migraine, but it felt more like an epilepsy type thing.



  16. #36
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    Dec. 13, 2008
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dazednconfused View Post
    Question for fellow migraine sufferers...

    I was in an accident about a month and a half ago, where I believe I hit my head, but didn't think I did at the time. Subsequently, I've become super forgetful, and have had four of the worst migraines I've ever had. I've been a sufferer since my late teens/early 20s, but discovering my triggers helped, as did taking 600-800mg of ibuprofen, a bit of caffeine, and laying down in a dark room. With this I'm usually able to knock them out in 3-4 hours. They have now progressed to me waking up with the starts of them (like today), or lasting entire days, auras, nausea/throwing up, and NSAIDs, rest etc doesn't touch them. Plus a super nasty hangover sort of feeling that lasts into the next day! Ugh.

    1. How do you find a good doctor (neurologist??) that specializes?
    2. Anyone had a concussion that has/had migraines?
    3. Does being on B/C help even if they're not neccessarily hormonally related?

    Any insight would be appreciated. I'm going to try to get a referral to a neuro somehow (I don't have a GP or insurance), so that should be all kinds of fun....
    Sorry about the head And about the lack of insurance. Sometimes paying out of pocket is not a big deal and you can get a big discount. Brain injuries would not be in that category. If you are committed to seeing a neurologist (and you do need one, or at least an experienced and efficient GP) you may want to look into buying a health insurance policy. It won't be cheap and may be a pain, but it will enable you to get the proper diagnostics done.

    1.There are two ways to use the word "referral" here. Without insurance, "getting a referral" shouldn't be difficult at all. You don't need a referral from a generalist, you just need a recommendation from anyone. Just get a name and call and make the appointment. Explain you have a presumed TBI and will be paying out of pocket for the initial exam. Let them know up front whether or not you could follow-up on a referral for diagnostic imaging. Honestly, you could just call the first neurologist in the phonebook and explain your situation and ask for a referral from that office to a neurologist who's subspecialty is headaches. Easy-peasy.

    2. I've had two mild/moderate concussions that came w/ some after effects. Not like yours but I would bet your symptoms aren't unusual. I'm not in a position to comment on your terrible headaches, but usually things like that get better over time, not worse, right? So be hopeful about that. 6wks isn't very long.

    3. I wouldn't think so. I think you need to talk to a doctor. As LaChasse said, depending on the headaches etc, there is a 66% chance they will get worse or stay the same. If you have otherwise crappy periods and your headaches get worse around that time and you are otherwise unable to consult with a doctor, you could always stop over at Planned Parenthood. You probably need to cite actual pregnancy prevention as your primary goal, but they can coach you on continuous cycling and depending on income will give you an entire year supply for little or no cost.

    Oh, my other thought on getting help w/o insurance is be very realistic and well-informed on what things might be going on with your body and what a doctor could do about it that will actually help that you can actually follow through with. Pain and memory problems are really scary and can feel intolerable. But I'm guessing for the most part things will resolve on their own with time. Or they won't, but there's nothing a doctor could do to heal you. They can give you meds to manage the pain better (triptans will hopefully work). Your memory issues really should just improve with time. Try challenging your brain rather than avoiding the discomfort of forgetfulness. You most likely do not have a tumor that needs to be removed. So the doctor can provide you with insight, do's and don't do's and meds.

    Oh, and for migraines, pseudofed (the real, meth maker's kind) is widely regarded as helpful. Some people take antihistamines, too, which I don't know what they do but they are pretty harmless and maybe would help with nausea...I dunno...

    Finally, check and double check your healthcare options. Every state is different and sometimes people qualify for rather obscure programs (like a discount to get on a prohibitive work policy). You may be able to get free or discounted meds, etc, etc.
    An auto-save saved my post.

    I might be a cylon



  17. #37
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    Jan. 5, 2010
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    VA--> Washington (state)
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    i'd definitely get looked at-- increasing migraines after a head injury isn't something i would sit on AT ALL. if i saw you in my office, i'd send you for a CT tomorrow and then off to neurology.

    you have a few options with no insurance as HillnDale said. first, I'm not sure how old you are, so that will delineate where you can go but 1) a free clinic and they can refer you if neuro comes to their office or their office has a policy for low-cost payments 2) a primary care provider who can refer you after an initial office visit (which is more expensive than seeing them as a regular patient, just fyi). some people, like me, will shave off a % the patient has to pay when i fill out the superbill with my codes.

    finding a neuro who specializes in migraines is just about looking in your area if you don't go via a primary care provider. if you don't have insurance, you don't need a referral unless neuro requires it too btw.
    And the wise, Jack Daniels drinking, slow-truck-driving, veteran TB handler who took "no shit from no hoss Miss L, y'hear," said: "She aint wrapped too tight."



  18. #38
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    Nov. 7, 2006
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    Knoxville TN
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    Default

    I'd go with Axxert before no helmet tbh.



  19. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by La Chasse View Post
    i'd definitely get looked at-- increasing migraines after a head injury isn't something i would sit on AT ALL. if i saw you in my office, i'd send you for a CT tomorrow and then off to neurology.

    you have a few options with no insurance as HillnDale said. first, I'm not sure how old you are, so that will delineate where you can go but 1) a free clinic and they can refer you if neuro comes to their office or their office has a policy for low-cost payments 2) a primary care provider who can refer you after an initial office visit (which is more expensive than seeing them as a regular patient, just fyi). some people, like me, will shave off a % the patient has to pay when i fill out the superbill with my codes.

    finding a neuro who specializes in migraines is just about looking in your area if you don't go via a primary care provider. if you don't have insurance, you don't need a referral unless neuro requires it too btw.
    Thanks so much for all the helpful info LaChasse. I'm 24, and unfortunately because this was related to a motor vehicle collision, the county medical pool will not pay for any procedures. I had insurance as did the person who hit me, but they don't pay out of pocket costs like this as they're coming up. I do have an attorney who has some connections at a good diagnostic center, but I know I can't just march up there and ask for an MRI or CT scan (not sure which??). Perhaps I can get one to accept a lien from my attorney, like I did with my orthopedic surgeon.

    Sucks because at least before even though they were miserable, I could manage them with lifestyle, diet, and OTC meds...

    Quote Originally Posted by HillnDale View Post
    Sorry about the head And about the lack of insurance. Sometimes paying out of pocket is not a big deal and you can get a big discount. Brain injuries would not be in that category. If you are committed to seeing a neurologist (and you do need one, or at least an experienced and efficient GP) you may want to look into buying a health insurance policy. It won't be cheap and may be a pain, but it will enable you to get the proper diagnostics done.

    1.There are two ways to use the word "referral" here. Without insurance, "getting a referral" shouldn't be difficult at all. You don't need a referral from a generalist, you just need a recommendation from anyone. Just get a name and call and make the appointment. Explain you have a presumed TBI and will be paying out of pocket for the initial exam. Let them know up front whether or not you could follow-up on a referral for diagnostic imaging. Honestly, you could just call the first neurologist in the phonebook and explain your situation and ask for a referral from that office to a neurologist who's subspecialty is headaches. Easy-peasy.

    2. I've had two mild/moderate concussions that came w/ some after effects. Not like yours but I would bet your symptoms aren't unusual. I'm not in a position to comment on your terrible headaches, but usually things like that get better over time, not worse, right? So be hopeful about that. 6wks isn't very long.

    3. I wouldn't think so. I think you need to talk to a doctor. As LaChasse said, depending on the headaches etc, there is a 66% chance they will get worse or stay the same. If you have otherwise crappy periods and your headaches get worse around that time and you are otherwise unable to consult with a doctor, you could always stop over at Planned Parenthood. You probably need to cite actual pregnancy prevention as your primary goal, but they can coach you on continuous cycling and depending on income will give you an entire year supply for little or no cost.

    Oh, my other thought on getting help w/o insurance is be very realistic and well-informed on what things might be going on with your body and what a doctor could do about it that will actually help that you can actually follow through with. Pain and memory problems are really scary and can feel intolerable. But I'm guessing for the most part things will resolve on their own with time. Or they won't, but there's nothing a doctor could do to heal you. They can give you meds to manage the pain better (triptans will hopefully work). Your memory issues really should just improve with time. Try challenging your brain rather than avoiding the discomfort of forgetfulness. You most likely do not have a tumor that needs to be removed. So the doctor can provide you with insight, do's and don't do's and meds.

    Oh, and for migraines, pseudofed (the real, meth maker's kind) is widely regarded as helpful. Some people take antihistamines, too, which I don't know what they do but they are pretty harmless and maybe would help with nausea...I dunno...

    Finally, check and double check your healthcare options. Every state is different and sometimes people qualify for rather obscure programs (like a discount to get on a prohibitive work policy). You may be able to get free or discounted meds, etc, etc.
    I would just love to have insurance, but I was laid off in September and then had this accident. I am back to working some part time, but December is going to be very lean. It's something I would very much like to have, and once I'm all healed up from my broken wrist I may be making enough to get some insurance. But that's likely February at the earliest.

    I know that these issues will resolve with time for sure, but the pain and debilitation is remarkable - and some of my interest in getting this taken care of is that I've been lucky that these weekly migraines have been on days I haven't worked. But I literally cannot afford to miss any hours, and I'm sure invariably I'll end up with one on a work day eventually. I also know they can't actually do anything about the concussion - that's sorta an 'is what it is' situation...I'm definitely not under the impression I have a brain tumor or anything. Would be nice to know what I'm dealing with, though. Especially if the migraines I've suffered with in the last 6 wks or so are going to become the standard (christ, I hope not!)...

    Again, thanks for all the useful information! I truly appreciate it...such a crappy world to navigate, especially when you're uninsured.



  20. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dazednconfused View Post
    ...such a crappy world to navigate, especially when you're uninsured.
    That it is.

    Sorry, wish I understood your situation better. I wish these complications from your accident could be covered by your accident insurance My point with suggesting purchasing insurance is that the cost of a CT, or whatever scan the a neuro would order before being able to make any conclusions about anything, would cost more than private insurance. It would also cost more than COBRA, even though that's often over $1000/mo. So if you can't do that or pay out of pocket, then you absolutely need to see what help you can get at a clinic. I'm not sure it's best to go to a neuro directly in this case. In any case, make sure to tell anyone you approach for care that you have had a concussion and you are having debilitating headaches and memory problems. You need to help them view your problems as urgent.

    I'm sorry, but I have to ask: Do you have parents? Do they have insurance?
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