Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Finding My Way Back.. Headaches

Longtime readers might remember that last fall, after a trip to a top neurologist at MGH in Boston for an unrelated cause, I was diagnosed with a hereditary migraine disorder. It was a rather comical visit, looking back at it. You have a fill out a 5 page questionnaire with this doctor, listing every health issue you have or ever have had in detail and he reviews it while he's meeting with you. I came to discover, while I was there, that he was also a top migraine specialist, so he was particularly interested in the section of the questionnaire about headaches, and how much writing and checking I had done there. When you have suffered with headaches just about every single day since being a teenager, you have a lot to write about.

After much discussion, and a battery of tests, including an MRI, I was put on an anti-convulsion medicine that is known to also prevent migraines. Medicine is amazing stuff. There were two  different kinds that he offered to me, and one caused horrible mood swings. You can guess that I didn't pick that one. The one that I take, has worked amazingly well in the year that i have been on it, even with the side effects, which have decreased over time. Lately however, I'm noticing that my hair is falling out in the shower. It started about 5 or 6 months ago, and I thought at first it was just a season of shedding, as one is prone to go through. Sadly, that hasn't been the case, and I am grateful that I have such thick hair. I read that it is due to the medicine depleting your vitamin B stores, and I have an appointment with my regular doctor in a few weeks to discuss this, get my levels checked, and hopefully start a supplement. I've also noticed my headaches creeping back. I don't know if this is due to my forgetting to take my meds on occasion (seriously, I have one of those daily pill things and an alarm on my phone, it's that bad), or if I need to up the dose. Something else to discuss with my doctor, but that is making me sad to think about.

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