The name the migraine chronicles came about through my adventure with migraines. My migraines began after a concussion in 2016. I was initially told they would go away, but instead they increased in frequency and intensity. After several doctors and failure on different protocols, I found a headache specialist.
I was diagnosed with chronic intractable migraines. Finally, a word to describe what I was experiencing. My life began to change, I was prescribed preventatives (i.e., medications taken to prevent a headache) and abortives (i.e. medications taken to stop a headache). I learned about triggers (e.g. change in barometric pressure, lack of sleep, stress). For a period of time these worked, and I felt hope, I was getting my life back. However, over time my body needed adjustments to my regimen. I added new medications, including the newly released CGRPs, Botox, nerve blocks, SPG blocks, and devices.
The scariest part has been the visits to the ER and hospitalizations. Sometimes the pain gets so intense I can’t think, part of my face goes numb, the nausea gets so intense, and I vomit profusely. Luckily, my local ER has been kind and understanding – providing me with a helpful cocktail of medications. I’ve heard horror stories so I realize how fortunate I have been. I have also been admitted multiple times at an academic hospital in NYC and once through Jefferson Headache Center for a continuous lidocaine infusion.
Migraines have tried to take over my identity – but I refuse to let them win! This is something I continue to work on in therapy. It’s challenging when every day I wake up with some level of pain. I do not remember what it is like to life without throbbing, tingling head pain.
I have hope one day I will have less migraines – both in severity and frequency. There are new medications (gepants) and devices coming out. I am adding non-pharmacological interventions – such as exercise, physical therapy, clean eating.
I am here to share my chronicles with migraines.