Saturday, June 27, 2009

Fight the Pain pt 3

The suspense is palpable. Here is the third installment in the Pain Fighting Trilogy that addresses the questions: How well am I fighting the pain, and what strategy is really best for me?

In this article, Eight Effective Pain-Relieving Methods by Rebecca Ruiz at, the author says that the most effective treatments for chronic pain involve these eight elements (to varying degrees); physical aids, physical therapy, yoga, medication, the Alexander Technique, acupuncture, invasive procedures and counseling, which I agree, pretty much sum up the options.

Here are my takes on medications and invasive procedures.

My current medications are pretty mild. Marijuana, muscle relaxers, infrequent, small doses of caffeine and even rarer high doses of OTC drugs are all I'm working with lately. Which has been, until recently, just fine with me. I've had the distinct displeasure of having a doctor who preferred to write prescriptions rather than explore any other avenues of pain treatment. None of the thirty-some-odd medications he had me try did anything good for me, so a bevy of side effects later, I'm a little gun shy when it comes to pills. There are a lot of drugs out there that I haven't tried and new drugs are discovered to help migraine sufferers all the time, so I am not discounting them forever. I am well aware that there may be a pharmacological cocktail out there that might just work, so I'll keep trying. But, I have learned not to leave my medical care solely in the hands of a doctor, but to insist on having a say in it, so hopefully I won't go through the same pain and discomfort again.

Finally, we come to the last resort, invasive procedures. In googling, I've read about patients and doctors touting implants, nerve blocks, and even surgery to sever nerves and muscles that cause pain as remedies for migraine. Some procedures seem extreme, and the success rate isn't always fabulous, but it seems worth it, some days. Just cut it out, please.

I've considered botox, and would try it if it became financially available. It is a little unnerving to think of injecting botulism into your head, but from what I've read, bad reactions are fairly rare. As for surgery and implants, well, I'm not rushing into anything, but I will probably try anything, if all else fails.

I guess the moral of the story is this: Migraines are Like Snowflakes. No. That's not it. Maybe it's: Try Everything Once. Or: Nothing works for everybody and everything works for no one. Yeah. No. That's definitely not it.

Keep An Open Mind When It Comes To Your Own Health And Medical Treatment, But Not So Open That Your Brain Falls Out And You Turn Over All Medical Decisions To An Impartial, Rushed, Assembly Line Worker With A Medical Degree.


WinnyNinny PooPoo said...

If you can't be your own advocate, who else could be more qualified??

Some doctors are so dedicated to keeping the money merrygoround turning I think they forget their patients are human beings! **sigh**

Faren said...

Hey, I learned about you from Somebody Heal Me, at least I think that is where, a short while ago. Most of what you say fits me so well. It is nice to know someone knows how I feel. I've had a chronic daily headache for almost 5 years now, and I started getting disability last Oct. Just wanted to introduce myself and let you know I'll be reading, whether I comment or not.