on denial

Great read to think about

Brain Storm

***This post is not directed at any one person as the p.o.v. might imply, but rather sums up my feelings about so many conversations, spoken and not, imagined and not, that happen between people with chronic incurable illness and their loved ones.***

It’s hard to accept that an illness will be chronic, ongoing, and that only gradual improvement is plausible, but I’ve done it. Mostly. And accepting my reality is the very thing that allows me to make the best of it. Time spent wishing I felt better is wasted time. Time spent finding small comforts in the moment, taking care of myself, and looking forward to the small joys of tomorrow is time well spent.

Not that I don’t sometimes still break down in a puddle of overwhelmed exhaustion and despair tinged with self pity and feel loads better afterward. I do. But it’s no longer a daily, or even…

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The disability question


How long do you persist with working through pain? It is a question I ask myself all the time. There are a lot of factors to consider and I grasp them all. There is income stability. There is the factor of work helps with isolation, the sense of productivity and is emotionally and mentally beneficial. We feel good when we work. But then there is the chronic illness. The pain.

Continue reading “The disability question”

Triptans: Not a magic pill



I wanted to look up the efficiency of triptans because it seemed to me that often, more often than not in fact, I would just get a dulling for a couple hours and then back to full blown migraine. Or it would work for a couple hours and back to full blown migraine.

This isn’t the magic pill we are sold on. The ABORTIVE that will ABORT our migraine 100% so we can continue on with our day. But it can do that. Just not the percentages I had always assumed. The response rate of any kind of pain relief was in the 60%. Completely free of pain at the 2 hour mark were in around averaging 30% and those that sustained it in around the teens, with no adverse reactions. Those that had a migraine again roughly in the 30%s as well.

The thing was I thought the response rate was around 80. With the ones getting 100% in the 60%. And occurrence around 20%. But it shouldn’t have surprised me because Many people have the same experiences as me, so these stats must be quite accurate indeed. Even the failure rate of around 40% seems roughly accurate.

Remembering we can only take these 3 times a week, regardless of how many migraines we get… I myself have been saving them for work days because I work 3 days a week. I have to say dulling my migraine for a few hours… not helping me get through the work day. Just saying. Weel, substantially worse when I worked five days a week and had days not covered at all.

So people have to understand, yes, we have a pill to take for our migraines but it isn’t a magic pill. The responses for every migraine vary. And we are limited in our capacity to take them.



Source: Treating migraine headaches with Triptans

Migraine: The Postdrome

The Postdrome is called a `migraine hangover`for a reason… it is the hangover without having it drink it get it. Yay us. It can last for hours to days. Yay us.

The postdrome is a constellation of symptoms that persist beyond the resolution of headache. Many of these symptoms appear initially during the prodrome or with the headache phase. Commonly, patients report anorexia, nausea, muscle tension, fatigue, and cognitive impairment. This phase has been termed the migraine hangover and can last and produce disability up to 1 to 2 days beyond the headache phase. The pathophysiology of the postdrome is unknown, but likely represents a gradual recovery phase from the extreme neurologic disruption that occurs during migraine — Understanding the Patient With Migraine: The Evolution From Episodic Headache to Chronic Neurologic Disease. A Proposed Classification of Patients With Headache, Medscape


Not much happens with the Postdrome but we feel Cruddy with it. So fatigued. And with brainfog like nuts. Once the pain is gone it is like the body and brain don`t turn back on yet… they are left lagging behind with no energy to run.



And then, again, we get the mood symptoms back for a show. I have Never experience the euphoria… but that would be nice for sure. I have experienced the depressed mood though


You can also feel sore all over with muscle tenderness. Just feeling uhg all over.

Here are the results of a study on 893 migraineurs:


A total of 32.9% of IHS migraine 1.1-1.6 patients reported prodrome symptoms with an average of 9.42 hours. IHS 1.1-1.7 migrainereported 29.7% and 6.8 hours, respectively. The most commonest symptoms were tiredness, mood change, and gastrointestinal symptoms; all three of these symptoms were present together in 17% of the patients with prodrome. The duration of prodrome was less than 1 hour in 45.1%, 1-2 hours in 13.6%, 2-4 hours in 15.0%, 4-12 hours in 13.1%, and greater than 12 hours in 13.2%. IHS 1.1-1.7 patients showed similar findings. IHS 1.1-1.6 patients with prodrome differed from patients without prodrome in having more triggers as a whole (P <.01), more individual triggers including alcohol (P <.01), hormones (P <.01), light (P <.001), not eating (P <.05), perfume (P <.01), stress (P <.01), and weather changes (P <.05), a longer duration of aura (P <.05), longer time between aura and headache (P <.05), more aura with no headache (P <.05), longer time to peak of headache (P <.05), longer time to respond to triptan (P <.05), longer maximum duration of headache (P <.05), and more headache associated nausea (P <.05), more headache associated running of the nose or tearing of the eyes (P <.05), more postdrome syndrome (P <.05), and longer duration of postdrome syndrome (P <.001).

So symptoms vary as does that duration by quite a bit.


So now we are at the end of the migraine stages. But it is good to note these stages last for different durations. Sometimes you even skip a stage, assuming you even get the auras or the headaches. And sometimes you go from the headache stage right into another prodrome of another migraine. The stages are what a standard attack looks like, but every attack is different. You may not get a prodrome one time and have a long prodrome the next. Same with the postrome. It may be not there or last days. There is a lot of variability in there and it is good to know the symptoms to know what stage you are in. First it helps with immediately treating the migraine. Secondly it can indicate when a migraine is nearing its end… but is in still in effect.

Migraine: Headache stage


We are all aware of the headache stage. Many people thing it is the only stage which is why we need to raise awareness of the neurological processes to the disease.

It lasts anyway from 4 hours to 72 hours. Yeah. It can in fact last that long. And it certainly does. When it lasts longer it is a different, called a status migraine which is important due to the risks associated with it. It is mild to severe in intensity.

It is pulsating and throbbing. Definitely made worse by movement.

Generally migraines are diagnosed as one-sided pain. But they can in fact be bilateral from the get go. They can become bilateral into the attack. They can also switch sides during an attack.

It is not necessary to a migraine attack. Silent migraines have no headache stage.

In this stage is the migraine symptoms that are most familiar to someone who does not suffer from a migraine. Such as the sensitivity factor: To Sound. To Light. To Odours.


And it can include:


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Not to mention jaw pain, facial pain, vertigo and dizziness and more.

The pain is hard to describe in its intensity. It is hard to think through pain. Hard to want to move pain. Constantly distracting pain. With your senses all heightened making your environment quite unpleasant and aggravating.