Headaches

Aug. 4th, 2005 10:50 pm
emlykate: (Default)
This week, I've been examinging the very vague term "headache". You can get a bit more explicit and add words to the term like: sinus, tension, migraine, stress, etc. but it really boils down to one thing, and one thing only, pain, somewhere above your neck and behind your face. To make it even more obnoxious, I've even discovered that I regularly have 3 variations of headache on the left side of my head, behind my left eye. Headache #1 (listed in chronological order) is your run of the mill sinus headache.... generalized pressure in the head, often accompanied by congestion, and usually somewhat localized to the areas immediately around the eyes. Take 2 Advil cold & sinus, call me in the morning. Headache #2 is a rather classic migraine... feels like there's someone sticking a knife in the back of my left eye, and shoving it in far enough that it'll cause my eye to actually pop out of my head, this is generally accompanied by nausea, sensitivity to light, sound, smell, movement, and the only sure fire cure is heavy drugs and 12 hours of sleep in a completely dark room. Headache #3 is a relatively new phenomenon, as in, I've recently discovered that it is in fact, separate from either #1 or #2. It does involve the area directly behind my left eye, and actually feels like some little gold miner is in there with a pickaxe, poking at the backside of my eye, the sensitivity is only to bright lights, there's much more movement sensitivity and it's actually painful to close my eyes and touch my upper eyelid (as compared to the right where it's just a weird pressure sensation). The disheartening part of this is that I've got no clue what to do for headache #3, the typical remedies don't work, it just hangs out there, for as long as it's going to, without changing. It's obnoxious. Anyone have any good ideas?
emlykate: (Default)
Yesterday, I discovered that if you're going to have a medical emergency, the best place to do it is the Intensive Care Unit. Particularly if you're one of the people who is supposed to be up walking around taking care of the people who are critically ill in their beds. Before freaking out ensues, let me point out to you that I'm home, updating my journal and just fine.

As I've written about in some of my more recent journal entries, I haven't been feeling 100%. I'd say I've been running more around 75% lately, tired, achy, muscles twitchy, sleeping a ridiculous amount and overall, not at all well. Yesterday, I overslept my alarm, woke up and felt positively foul, but still pulled it together and went to work. The morning started out OK, I was up on 5B, our neuro ICU, saw 3 patients, was talking with some of the nurses (ironically, about how I hadn't been feeling well, and trying to pick their brains a little bit) and then started multidisciplinary rounds. Basically, people from each of the different disciples (nursing, rehab, dietary, respiratory, etc.) meet up and we round on the patients on the units, we had talked to the patient in room one, then went into room two. After being in there for a few minutes, I suddenly felt very warm, and then broke out into a clammy sort of sweat. Not wanting to cause anything resembling a scene, I backed slowly out of the room, dropped my stuff on the nearest table and held on for dear life when the instinct to "hold on or you're falling down" kicked in. One of the nurses happened to be walking toward me at this point, and the next thing I know, she's standing behind me blocking me to prevent a fall and yelling for a chair. At that point, things get a wee bit hazy, but I know I was slapped into a chair, wheeled into an empty patient room, hooked up to the monitors, blood sugar checked, had my boss called, then the charge nurse was on the phone with my doctor's office, all under 5 minutes. I didn't ever go completely out, but I also definitely was not all there either. As far as immediate vital signs go, the only thing out of whack appeared to be my blood pressure, which was definitely elevated, but was coming down over time. So, then came the indignity of being wheeled down to the department (I knew I was feeling better when I started to be embarrassed by the whole mess), the being rather babied by everyone. I ended up in the doctor's office where they did an EKG (which came out OK), a slew of blood work and had an extensive discussion with the doctor on call. (For a bit of back-story, just to make this more fun, my regular doctor happens to have gone out on maternity leave in the last 2 weeks, early, because she's having twins.) The one interesting thing that I did find out is that my 2nd round of blood work was not completely fine as I had been led to believe, I actually had an elevated CRP (which is an indicator of inflammation), and not exactly in the slightly elevated range either.

As for what actually happened yesterday, no immediate explanation, however it does appear that I was rather dehydrated, and as the heat index was again, over 100 degrees, and there's only so much an air-conditioning system can actually do, heat probably also played a role. In addition to all of that good stuff, I do get to go see a neurologist again, once more to rule out MS, because of the muscle issues. I've been through this once before, and things were pretty inconclusive, nothing visible appearing on MRI, but odd things in my symptomatology that were never really explained. On the one hand, I'm just annoyed, partly because it seems like that if it were MS, it'd have been figured out by now, and aren't we just chasing around another red herring, and partly because I really dislike doctors, and doctors offices, and everything related to having to go, be poked and prodded and have tests done and etc. On the other hand, I'm kind of relieved that there's a plan in place, even if it seems to be starting in a slightly off the wall place, because something needs to get better, I just can't keep going like this.

So, that's the dish; I'm tired, I'm cranky, and, as we used to say as kids, I don't like the government (it had something to do with some slogan chanted by a bunch of women on a protest march). And to top it off, now I've got everyone at work hovering around me making sure I feel OK, or that I'm not overwhelmed, or that I'm not too tired, or whatever. I appreciate the concern, but I kind of want to just get though and get on with it. I do realize that simply by posting this journal, I am spreading the word more, and likely will result in more people checking in (either via lj-land or other means) but partly that's to minimize having to explain it over & over again, and to just kind of get it out there, I don't know, make it a little more real, and partly, to document what is actually going on. Enough rambling, it'll be bedtime soon enough.
emlykate: (Default)
Yuck. I have spent more time on hold with my doctor's office during the last week than I know what to do with. I've totally memorized the health awareness notices/adverts and the annoying muzac that goes with them. My time obviously ISN'T important to them, or I wouldn't have to call 47 times to figure out what the results of my blood work is or to find out what to do next. I went into the office July 6th because I was having a lot of mucle pain and started having muscle spasms & jerks. This had been going on for about a month at that point. 10 days later, I found out that my CK was elevated, indicating muscle inflammation and breakdown. Then I went back and had more blood work, and last Friday was told that my results were normal, and I just probably had a virus. Except that my symptoms haven't changed! Still tired, still having muscle pain, still having muscle jerks. Gah!

Ok, done venting, and now it's time to go move my car.

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Emlykate

October 2011

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