Tip of the iceberg

I’m sorry for this long and rambling story, but I am unsure where else to turn.  I have had migraines since a early early age (3, am 52 now) and, they have changed over the years in symptoms duration and frequency. About 10 years ago I started getting vertigo, confusion, aphasia and neck pain. After a short hospital stay because they thought I had has a stroke, I changed jobs to one with “less stress”, also less pay.  Fast forward 3 years and those same symptoms returned. I did not know (either did my Dr.) these new terrifing symptoms were associated with migraine, went the ENT route, only to be told I was fine, and a malingerer. (MRI did show bulging @ L1 – L2 and L5 – S1 and spondylosis @ C5, C6 and C6 C7.) Was denied STD through my employer as, after 8 months they still thought it was labrinthitis. Lost my job a few weeks later because my position was eliminated. This was in 2009 during those “tough economic times”.  During this time I was sent to the U of M ENT dept which eventually sent me to their Neurology Dept, where the Dr. actually said it was his opinion that my ovaries were not removed as part of my hyseterectomy 16 years earlier and I was simply experiencing hormone inballance and needed HRT as I was menapausal.  Was finally diagnosed (in late 2009 by yet another ENT) as having several different types of migraine.

Worked my way through the local Neuros to one who said at our first visit, “I will help you!” God bless Dr. Landon. Several months passed as we went through many different classifications and combinations of meds. He however, does not administer Botox, so referred me to one who does. In August 2011 I got my first treatment with fantastic results! Three monthe later, the pain returned and I got my second traetment. This time, although I had good results, I lost the ability to hold my head up, (very scary) so I wore a cervical collar for about 5 weeks and gradually the muscle tone returned. The headaches also returned, but not the frequency or severity (15 or more per month) required for Botox.

Found gainful employment (even less $$ though) last March, I am in Michigan which has been slow to recover from the recession. I enjoy my new job, but the physical nature of it really got my poor bulging and degenerating discs going. My PCP had given me Tramadol and Hydracodone, which I had used quite sparringly. Aleve worked better and longer than tylenol for my back and I could use it at work, so I did. Then my stomach complained, so I was told to take 1 tramadol and one tylenol for the pain and still be able to work. I never took a fully recommended does of tramadol, 2 tabs 3x day. Usually just enough to get through work, up to 3 timse a week, but some weeks just tylenol. Hydracodone was saved for head attacks, a few xs a month.

In Feb the Ice Pick attacks started again and then the sore (godawful!) neck pain, and lo-and-behold the world started tilting on that old crappy axis again, and very shortly all the migraine symptoms returned. Light, sound odor sensitivity, aphasia, left sided drag, unrelenting pain, mental fog. Called both the Neuro and my PCP. While I waited for my insurance to ok Botox through the Neuro, my PCP referred me to MHNI.

Got my third Botox treatment (avoiding a few areas in the neck so my head won’t drop) and last week went to MHNI. At this point I am not sure if this is the right route, given the back issues and fibromyalgia as well. I have read the posts about this place and their reluctance (refusal) to get involved (even write a letter) with FMLA or (heaven forbid SSI) even short term disability. They do want me to go inpatient, however and sign documents for rx’s that I do not tolerate. I am very uneasy with their approach. Do they think I have MOH? Don’t know they did not say, hum. I did the Migranol 3 x a day for 3 days and that seems to have broken the lingering pain cycle.

So I am just confused with this place and wonder if maybe I should check with my PCP about a general pain clinic? Any info or opinions?

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