Monday, 25 August 2014

Migraines

A couple of years ago I had my first ever migraine, and it was scary as fuck.

For the first time ever my vision was broken, I could not see properly on one side, and the effect was growing. Lasted half an hour or so, and then I had a "thick head" for a while and was generally not feeling well. A second incident a week later and I went and got my head examined (nice MRI images) and told "tough" it was a migraine.

I have had a handful since, but the last few weeks they are way worse. Several days running. On top of which I am getting migraine-like cluster headaches (with no aura) after a bit too much drink. The latest migraine was after two days not drinking (I had orange juice at the school reunion even) so there is more at play than just one trigger here.

The only clue is my blood pressure may have started to get high, so I'll be on pills for that soon. Let's hope that is it.

This afternoon I had a migraine again, so decided that I may as well have a few drinks this evening - we'll see what the hell happens.

Update: Well I did not get a headache all night which was great news, sadly I got a migraine with aura at 7am, but those are way less hassle as I can just go back to sleep for a couple of hours. And now (10am) I feel fine.

8 comments:

  1. Good luck with it!

    When I was younger I had an unexplained spate of terrible occipital lobe headaches. No diagnosis, but they disappeared again after a kidney problem cleared up (kidney stones and some sort of related infection IIRC). They've reappeared recently though, which I hope is something temporary again.

    My maternal grandmother used to suffer terrible migraines too. Despite being a doctor herself, I don't think they ever got treated effectively.

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  2. I've had a handful of visual migranes over the last 8 years or so. Then there were three in a week just this month. Now nothing again for a week.

    I've come to suspect it has something to do with blood sugar levels; the frequency’s been coincident with both the progression and control of my type 2 diabetes. Sleep deprivation might’ve also been a factor.

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  3. It's classic posthypoglycaemic (rebound) migraine. Alcohol can lower blood glucose drastically. You need to eat properly (complex carbohydrates) even when boozing or travelling. Also alcohol (being a diuretic) can cause dehydration, which is itself a further cause of migraine. Never go to bed after alcohol without a snack and plenty of water; never skip meals and drink instead. And consider a diabetes test, under *realistic* circumstances.

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    1. Ok but lastest was not after drinking and I always make sure I am not dehydrated and blood sugar is ok. Testing blood sugar when I have a migraine and always normal. May be a factor I guess but not obvious. I suspect main thing is to start a diary and record drink and food and blood sugar and so on related to migraines. Damn annoying

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  4. I used to get migraine as a kid, and it seemed to be triggered by worry (when I hadn't done my History homework, for example!). I would lie in a darkened room because light hurt. Then when I was about 20 I was out with friends and felt one coming on - I decided to "ride it out", stayed with my friends and had a few drinks through the evening - it faded away and I haven't had one since! Probably not helpful, but a data point nonetheless.
    Cheers and good luck,
    Howard

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  5. Can you take a triptan? I find that sumatriptan gets me back to "able to concentrate" in 90 minutes... I don't get many these days anyway - one every 2-3 years on average - but they were a frequent nuisance around 20 years ago. Was about 15 when I had my first.

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  6. No-one thus far has mentioned caffeine withdrawal as a trigger for migraines. (I did write a longer post but the web ate it. Google for the details.)

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  7. Medication does really work well for a lot of people as Phil says.

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