“Come and hold my hand, I want to contact the living.”
Feel – Robbie Williams
Robbie may be singing about love, but I’m talking about being desperate to rejoin the land of the living after two weeks of dealing with migraines and residual headaches.
Migraine probably isn’t new to you if you have bipolar disorder. One study revealed that 82% of participants with bipolar II had migraine, compared to 27% of the patients with bipolar I. There are many more daunting statistics out there – all you have to do is Google “migraine bipolar disorder.” Personally, although I’ve had these kick-ass headaches since I was a kid, my migraines stem largely from an old injury being re-injured. But, whatever. The end result is still the same pain-ridden hell.
So, for those without migraine who can stand to stare at a computer screen and do a little bit of reading, here are some interesting links about migraines in general.
Ah, yes. What you can and cannot do in life. Here’s a recent article from Huff Post on 10 surprising migraine triggers. (Not so surprising, really. I can relate to four of them!)
Then, there is an article from Time Healthland by the kill-joy Nolan Feeney, who tries to argue that Migraine Triggers May Not be So Potent After All. (Oh, neurologists who participated in this study. You are ridiculously oversimplifying things. I bet none of you has ever had a migraine, either.)
This article from the Mayo Clinic is very thorough. Migraine sufferers – this is a pretty complete menu of available treatments out there. If your treatment isn’t working, consider taking this to your doc and see what else you might try. Bipolar patients – have a look at the antidepressant and anti-seizure med section. It’s possible you’re already on one of these meds.
And finally, there is (in my opinion) the gold standard for chronic migraine treatment. OnabotulinumtoxinA or Botox. Having these injections every three months changed my life, and when I lived in Seattle, I was lucky enough to have Dr Sheena Aurora as my physician. (Oh, Dr Aurora, how I miss you!)
Rejoining the Land of the Living
I’ve been loathe to admit that while not sitting at a computer working 16 hours a day has improved my headache profile significantly, it hasn’t killed the migraine beast altogether. So, I’m off to track down a clinic here in The Netherlands that offers the OnabotulinumtoxinA treatment. (My idiot GP refused to do it. He literally told me, “…you have more time than I do to look [for a facility],” which doesn’t bode well.) Insurance be damned! If I have to travel to London for treatment, so be it.
If anyone out there knows of a clinic in The Netherlands that offers the old Botox-for-Migraines service, please let me know.
And, Manic Muses will be back online as soon as I can get this under control.
[Going to find those Immitrex tablets now. The beast has awakened from this short stint in front of the computer.]