Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Headache Blogs

I've found several headache and migraine blogs, such as these two:
(I'm sorry; still haven't had time to figure out the link thing.) It is no surprise, because headaches are so common, and blogging is so popular. It's sad to see others are suffering like me, but it is helpful to read experiences of others and to know that I'm not the only one going through this.

Medication update: I'm taking Desipramine and Lexapro, both for depression, but they're supposed to help headaches too. My noticeable side effects are major dry mouth and loss of appetite. I'm having to force myself to eat and that's weird for me because I have a high metabolism and am used to eating a lot. I am 5'7'' and normally weigh around 115, but I was around 108 last time I saw my neurologist. I also have a rapid heart beat (around 105 beats per minute). I was on one medication once for high blood pressure (I think it was Toprol) which, of course, I was taking for headaches, and my heart rate got down to 40 beats per minute. So 105 seems high, but maybe it's not that bad.

I did some quick research on feverfew, and here's some info from WebMD:

Feverfew and migraines
Feverfew (Tanacetum parthenium) is an herb that has been used for years to prevent and treat migraines. In recent scientific studies, it has shown some promise in reducing the frequency and severity of migraines. However, more research is needed to confirm its benefits.
Inflammation of tissue around blood vessels in the brain is thought to play a role in headache pain and other symptoms associated with migraines. It is thought that feverfew reduces inflammation in blood vessels, which seems to decrease these symptoms. The active ingredient in feverfew is parthenolide, which acts similarly to a combination of a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID), such as aspirin, and a corticosteroid, such as prednisone, to reduce inflammation and pain.
Feverfew is available as dried leaf powder, tablet, capsule, and tea. It is important to find feverfew that has been standardized (which means you receive the same amount of active ingredient in every dose) with guaranteed potency. It can take several weeks of use for feverfew to become effective. For long-term treatment and prevention of migraines, use feverfew daily for several weeks to months or longer.
Side effects of feverfew are usually mild but can include stomach upset and allergic reaction, such as a skin rash. People who chew on the feverfew leaves sometimes develop open sores (ulcers) in the mouth. Feverfew is not recommended for use by young children or by women who are pregnant or breast-feeding.

I might pick up some feverfew next time I go shopping. My neurologist doesn't think it will help though, but I say it's worth a try.

I'm praying to God that my headaches go away, and I will pray for everyone else out there with pain too. They'll go away eventually, one way or another. For now I am just thankful I'm able to live my life.