What are vestibular migraines?

I always asumed virtigo, dizziness and all that wierd motion stuff was just part of the neurological fun of a migraine. I guess there is a migraine class for people with a whole lot of this part of the migraine.

Vestibular migraine is a variant of migraine in which instead of headache being the most predominant feature, dizziness is. Patients usually say that out of nowhere they got extremely dizzy and don't feel like they're on even ground. Some describe a spinning or rocking sensation. They have light or sound sensitivity and get nauseous or throw up. Episodes can last minutes to hours, and there's a chronic form where people have a constant sense of imbalance. In many instances, people have a history of migraine headaches before vestibular migraine shows up.-

Study links "aura" migraines in women to brain lesions

Lovely. When I get my MRI next month I bet the doctors will be astonished to find a black hole where my brain used to be... but maybe not, maybe just lesions, which sounds worse than it is, I think.

Scientists said there is no evidence the so-called "silent" lesions, which can be as small as a pinpoint and are common in many older people, affect mental or motor function as adults age. Still, the study of more than 4,600 men and women in Iceland is the largest prospective research to show that migraines occurring in midlife may affect the brain years later, said Lenore Launer, chief of the neuroepidemiology section of the Laboratory of Epidemiology, Demography and Biometry at the National Institute on Aging in Bethesda, Md.

"The importance of this study is it suggests that migraines are not just an episodic condition," Launer said. "It may lead to long-term changes in the brain. At this point there's no real clinical message for people with migraines."

'Maye lead to long-term changes in the brain', well I can tell you that is true, when you begin to think differently, remember differenty and acti differently. My brain just ain't what it used to be.

I think I emotionally flatlined

Somewhere along the way I seem to have lost my sympathy for other people's pain. Not my empathy, that I got loads of. More so I cannot seem to tolerate complaining or whining about any sort of mild to moderate pain in others. I should not compare other people's pain to my own, because it is not a contest or a game or even a measurable scale in which to read one person's suffering over anothers. Yet I cannot seem to stop myself from doing it. I hear someone with some minor complaint, even a long enduring minor complaint, and I listen and nod and make some general sympathetic remark. Most of which is false, because while I empathize and often feel the same or worse, I do not think it is productive to announce it. That in fact on my best day I am not doing so hot, but I still do all the things I need to do and none of the things I want to do. I think of what I need to endure because that is the way it is, and all the meds I need to just function at that minimal capacity, all on those rare good days... and I just cannot muster any real sympathy. So while I can relate, I can empathize, I just don't see the need to discus it or sympathize when I am in the same boat or wishing I were. I do empathize when someone is working with a migraine, because without the right meds, their pain and cognitive impairments are a great deal higher than a 4... no matter the frequency. But I would have little sympathy, for example, if someone was constantly voicing complaints about chronic headaches... I can empathize, since chronic anything sucks, but the pain level is mild and the chronic nature ensures that person would have a baseline functioning level, which would mean it would be like someone complaining about normality. Hmm, today I feel the same level of crappiness I felt yesterday.

While I do not want to contribute to the isolation I know comes with chronic complaints and health problems, nor do I feel the need to express sympathy for it. Because that sort of conversation would mean openly expressing my own pain in order to relate to theirs and I do my damndest to mask my everyday state with a fine facade. I do not use my illness as an excuse for anything work related, because that would be admitting it affects me. I seem to expect the same from others. I expect others with chronic illness would also want to minimize its effects and try and maintain a facade on good days and laugh away the pain. I may hate it when people do not understand why I have so many doctors appointments and too many sick days... I know they cannot comprehend, so don't bother trying, I just do my best which sadly is not going to please everyone... frankly every day I manage to get out of bed is a roaring success to me. But when I am work, no matter how rotten, I do my job. I may be chronically ill, but rest assured no one hears about me being chronically ill. (with the exception of anyone reading this blog, which by you definitely get a load full of it)

I get the need for some people to express their discomfort, pain or ill feeling in order to have people know or hear them because otherwise they would think they are 'fine'. I do understand that. Sometimes I think people think I am 'fine' when I get to work and get my job done, without understanding the lengths I go to to do so, and all the drugs it takes to do so, and how no matter how many meds the pain is there. No one gives you a reward for making in to work, only notices when you don't. So I get the need to express the feeling that, yes, I am at work, but by the way i feel like crap. I just long ago learned that no one really cares to hear how crappy you feel on a daily basis. Obviously people sympathize when you cannot keep the facade up and look like you feel like crap, just as I sympathize when someone else is in that state. Obviously though when it is a chronic ailment, even I do not want to hear about it all the time. I don't even want to hear myself complain all the time. I think it is because I am just in that hazy state of numbness knowing i am barely managing to achieve that functioning state on a daily basis. I could worry that I will not be able to, I could be trying hard to prevent that, but been there done that and am just drained of all desire to make the attempt. Just kind of holding on and hoping I will hit that spot of balance between pain and medication. If my own precarious state does not faze me, then is it really surprising I cannot muster up some honest sympathy for others? I should, because I know very well that when you are chronically ill that balance is rarely achieved and never maintained... you are always struggling to keep up and absolutely nothing will cure you... sometimes you win the battle, sometimes you don't. Hell, we should all shout out at the top of our lungs when we make it into work. 'Victory is mine! Today I won the battle!'

Certainly it seems like everyone notices when you lose the battle, but do not grasp that it is war and there are so very, very many battles. Yeah, I get the desire to express that. I just don't actually express it. I have that long held fear of being labelled a chronic complainer, so I tend to minimize complaints, which has done nothing good for me, but also makes me tend to do the same with others... I acknowledge their battle, but try not to show too much attention to it, as though they too don't want to make a big deal about it but cannot avoid mentioning it from time to time. It is called emotional distancing, emotional avoidance, emotional numbness. So, no, it is not a contest. We are each in our own war, dealing with our daily battle whether we voice it or not, whether we complain or not, whether our facade holds or not.

Maybe I cannot understand the need to voice it, but I get the battle. Right now I am on the losing end of that battle, so I am wearing a little thin on sympathy, and any emotions really. You know when you get to that state where it is just you and the pain, and what you need to do in order to get up in the morning and get through the day so you can get back home as soon as possible. Everything becomes surreal and it is just you and the battle. If you pause to reflect for a moment you could just burst into tears, so better not to think, just get it done, work through the pain and earn yourself some rest to get through it the next day, counting the days till the weekend...

I had a Bad Day

I woke up feeling absolutely drained. Then our kitten got sick all over the place and me. So I called in work cause I wanted to make sure he was not sick sick, since had has been sick and he is just a wee kitten, but the boss did not think that was a reasonable excuse. So after I changed I went in all cranky and tired. Then the day was just one fricken thing after another. I set a vet apt for Charlie for the end of the day, the last appointment they had to get him checked out. To make sure he is not too sick, to make sure my other cats do not get it. But boss was not pleased I had not asked her about this. So I resechdualed it for the closest one that had to the very end of the day, which will be next monday... which is pushing it since he is a kitten and needs his shots. I had a killer migraine all day and was just out of sorts, the whole day sucked the big one, and because of the migraine these generally small things compounded until I was just plain cranky. Finally, I stay late to cover for the fact I came in early, finally get out of there to get to the pharmacy to get yet more meds, forgot my wallet for the one med I pay 3 bucks on for some reason and got crankier. Afterall that I come home cranky, tired with a whopping migraine that just won't freakin quit and my chest aches for some reason... and I think maybe I will have a heart attack and save myself the trouble of having to get up and do it all over again. But tomorrow I have that ultra sound thing from my stomach, in regards to the whole nausea thing I have going on. My boss was not pleased about that, so there goes my lunch hour, but I was going to use that anyway. I don't even feel like going to the thing, since it is out of town, so I have to drive there, do it, drive back, make sure I ready to go back to work and then drive to work all for a test that is not likely going to help any. My MRI is schedualled on july 20th.

Sometimes working with migraines blows. It is giving me Moods this time and I hate that.

Exercise is totally over rated

I have been attempting some mild exercise, under the theory that just a little will prevent my muscles from wilting and my ultra hypermobile knees from collapsing. It is really hard to get motivated when you have chronic migraines... a migraine is not the time to be thinking about any sort of movement. I read that aerobic exercise would not cause a migraine, so that does leave a small window of opportunity. I am not so sure about that theory, since I did a workout (by workout I mean danced several songs on my Wii... which totally counts) and not too long after his with one fricken whopping migraine.

Plus with FMS any sort of exercise causes a great deal more pain. Every time I do just a little of exercise on either upper body or lower, well then that whole muscle group hurts like hell for two to three days. Which means hard to have any consistent routine on a daily basis for sure, cause that pain compounds. Then I think if I keep doing it and just push through that pain, then maybe I will get to the point where at least I have some endurance and muscle stability (to hold those hyermobile joints in place)... and maybe that will be the case. What I do know is it will not help with the pain, cause FMS pain is all about the brain sending a constant pain signal out, so any pain is felt faster, stronger and longer... no matter how fit you are. So while there will be benefits, there will also be increased pain that will not recede with time.

But it has to be done, one way or the other. A couple weeks back I went out dancing and danced my butt off and had a blast (a rare thing for a hermit to do). It was awesome, and the booze helped with the immediate pain. The next day, well, I expected some discomfort, which there was, but I could also not put any pressure on one leg because my knee was shot (and that is not FMS related). So I figure that I better do something to get some basic muscle fitness going on before I have nothing to hold my bones up. Sounds like a sound choice to make. But dang that FMS pain can get nasty. Your feet hurt so bad you have to hobble, your arms hurt so bad you can straighten them if your life depended on it and the rest of you feels like you have been beaten with a stick. Plus, FMS makes you have no endurance, your muscles start to tremble and shake pretty quickly and that can last days. Hard to say whether I can keep it up. If the pain diminished in some consistent way then there would be hope, but not so much. And this is all from what most people would call some serious mild exercise. And this is also being on Lyrica, which actually helps with FMS pain, in the sense the immediate pain is not nearly as intense or felt as quickly.

I think I will have to convince myself that pain is good... that pain means I am trying and doing something that may make me, if not feel better, last longer. It helps that I am doing a game (that has objectives and goals and cool music, all of which encourage me to continue despite the discomfort). If it was straight up exercise, well, you might as well call it what it is... torture.

And then comes along the migraine... and I think jeez, this whole punishment punishment thing is totally not working for me. I would seriously like some sort of reward for doing something good. It is basic behaviorism here... you do something that totally sucks but in the end you get some sort of reward for your efforts... and if my only reward is that if I can manage to make any significant change by doing mild exercise that I might not have to have knee replacement when I am fifty, well, that totally does not cut it. Doesn't that totally suck? Anyway, I am going to keep at it, at the same slow pace and see if I can get some sort of baseline to build on.

I would love to just redirect you to the new site...

But sadly the redirect function doesn't function. I will continue to persist hitting it and see if it will eventually do something. Or s...