Posts Tagged ‘Symptoms’
Wednesday, July 13th, 2011
Migraine head pain can make you feel helpless, like there isn’t a thing in the world that can help you alleviate your chronic pain. Well, hope is not lost. Many sufferers of migraine attacks, fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome have learned how to get past their pain symptoms, and live to tell about it.
Below are 5 excellent books written by chronic pain patients and the doctors who treat them.
10 Simple Solutions to Migraines, by Dawn A. Marcus, M.D.
Dr. Marcus is the definitive expert on coping with chronic pain, from fibromyalgia to migraines. Her award-winning books and essays have helped millions of sufferers find ways to deal with constant head pain, muscular aches, fatigue, and depression. Ten Simple Solutions is your source for understanding the science behind migraine attacks, finding your migraine triggers, and utilizing treatments for preventing migraine headaches.
Beyond Casseroles: 505 Ways to Encourage a Chronically Ill Friend, by Lisa J. Copen
This is an excellent book to give to relatives, friends, and coworkers. Help them to understand your suffering and things they can do to assist, without any of the awkwardness. You already know they want to help out- they just don’t know how. This book by Lisa J. Copen provides an easy way to get the message across without causing any hurt feelings or embarrassment.
Beyond Chronic Pain, by Rebecca Rengo
Beyond Chronic Pain: A get-well guidebook to sooth the body, mind, & spirit picks up where traditional medicine usually leaves off. Learn ways to relieve headaches and other chronic bodily ailments through alternative therapy. Holistic pain management treats the body, mind, and soul as one, and is more conducive to natural, complete healing. This self-help book will guide you through the healing process from the inside out.
A Brain Wider than the Sky, by Andrew Levy
This book will inspire you to start your own migraine journal. In A Brain Wider than the Sky, Andrew Levy shares his contemplations, experiences, and revelations on his own chronic migraine symptoms. Sometimes witty, sometimes surreal, the author releases his pain for the world to see with vivid, raw imagery. A must-read for migraine patients and their families.
The Headache Prevention Cookbook, by David Ryan Marks, M.D. and Laura Marks, M.D.
Think you already know all your migraine triggers? Read what this husband and wife doctor team has to teach you about eating to prevent migraine attacks. Follow their elimination diet to pinpoint the foods that are causing your migraine headaches. Book includes clear, simple instructions and helpful recipes to get you started on your headache-free journey.
Plan a Headache-Free Summer Vacation: Five Travel Tips
Go Ask Alice: Migraine Auras in Wonderland
Reviews of Books Related to Headaches and Migraine from About.com headaches and Migraine
Best Books on Pain, Chronic Pain, and Migraine
Thursday, June 2nd, 2011
U.S. News Best Hospitals for Neurology
Out of 1,200 hospitals that were reviewed for excellence in treating chronic migraines, the US News has narrowed their list down to the 10 highest ranking hospitals in the fields of neurology and neurosurgery.
1) John Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore, Maryland (410) 955–5000: In addition to placing #1 for migraine treatment and prevention, John Hopkins Hospital also made the national #1 Honor Roll for treatment in ENT, Rheumatology and for gynecology.
2) Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota (507) 284–2511: World-famous Mayo Clinic ranked #1 for diabetes and endocrinology, gastroenterology, and kidney disorders; they also have a strong online presence in providing current information about migraine headache symptoms and common headache triggers.
3) Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts (617) 726–2000: Massachusetts General Hospital ranked #1 center in Boston for treating migraines, and #1 in the USA for their psychiatry department.
4) New York-Presbyterian University Hospital of Columbia and Cornell, New York (212) 746–5454: In addition to neurology, NY-Pres also ranked #4 in psychiatry and kidney disorders.
5) University of California, San Francisco Medical Center, San Francisco, California (415) 476–1000: The UCLA teaching hospital was voted the #1 hospital for treating migraine pain in all of San Francisco.
6) Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, Ohio (216) 444–2200: Cleveland Clinic ranked best hospital in Cleveland for providing migraine headache relief, and #1 US hospital for treating heart disease and conducting heart surgeries.
7) Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, Los Angeles, California,(310) 825–9111: The UCLA Medical Center was voted the best clinic in Los Angeles for treating chronic migraines, and #2 in the USA for excellence in Geriatrics.
8) St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center, Phoenix, Arizona (602) 406–3000: This prestigious hospital was also voted the third best neurological center in Phoenix, Arizona.
9) NYU Langone Medical Center, New York (212) 263–7300: The NYU Langone Medical Center made the national Honor Roll for excellence in 14 fields of medicine, including neurology and neurosurgery. Additionally, they placed #2 for best hospital in New York for migraine headache patients.
10) Barnes-Jewish Hospital, Saint Louis, Missouri (314) 747–3000: The Barnes-Jewish Hospital/Washington University made the Honor Roll as #1 best migraine treatment center in Saint Louis, Missouri.
Monday, May 9th, 2011
Millions of Americans suffer from migraine headaches, but that number could be larger than we think. While data collected from the American Migraine Study II suggests that 28 million people in the US suffer migraine symptoms, another study points to a large number of cases where migraine pain was misdiagnosed as sinus headache symptoms.
About 18% of all women are diagnosed with migraines; headache pain is described by 80% of all migraineurs as excruciating, to the point where sufferers are unable to perform even simple daily tasks, interfering with their social lives and job performance. More disturbing, experts believe that less than half of all migraine sufferers will ever be diagnosed with chronic migraines, and an even small number- fewer than 20%- will ever receive prescribed migraine medications for headache relief.
Please read: Migraine Headaches Send Millions to the Emergency Rooms
Some researchers have conducted a study to explain the high rate of misdiagnoses surrounding migraine headaches, pointing to a tendency among patients and some doctors to confuse the symptoms of sinus headaches with those of migraines.
The Sinus, Allergy and Migraine Study (SAMS) was conducted to draw a line of contrast between two headache types: migraines and sinus headaches. Says lead authors, the “majority of those with self-diagnosed sinus headaches have migraines or probable migraines.”
Here are the results of that study:
- Included in this study were 100 individuals who believed themselves to be suffering from sinus headaches.
- Participants were asked to fill out questionnaires designed to deduct the level of their headache pain and impairment caused by their headache symptoms.
- Headache sufferers were also asked if they had any other side effects, such as stuffy nose, watery eyes or flushed skin.
- All in all, 63% of study participants were eventually diagnosed with chronic migraines, after having previously been diagnosed with sinus headaches.
- Scientists attributed the wrong diagnoses to miscommunication between the patients and the doctors, in addition to a tendency among some patients to “self-diagnose” their headache symptoms.
- Triggers which caused migraines included changes in the weather and seasons, allergies and altitude changes.
For more info on headache types, read:
7 Headache Categories:Which Type of Headache do you Have?
Women who get Migraines are also Likely to get This
FYI Living, PubMed Gov
Saturday, February 26th, 2011
Photo credit: Jef Bettens
Women who experience PMS, or premenstrual syndrome, are more likely to experience hormone-induced headaches — but some headaches may actually be a type of migraine called a menstrual migraine.
According to Headaches.org, an estimated 60 percent of women suffer from these hormone-induced headaches, and many delay receiving treatment because they do not think they can be treated.
Today we’re going to help you identify them — and explain why they are not the same as regular headaches.
The Symptoms of Menstrual Migraines
So what symptoms should you look out for? Here are the most common symptoms of menstrual migraines:
- A throbbing, nauseating pain that occurs on one side of the head.
- A sudden sensitivity to light or sound.
- Vomiting or extreme stomach unease.
- An increase in the severity or frequency of headaches right before or during menstruation.
Essentially, the symptoms of period-induced migraines are very similar to regular migraines — the only difference is that it occurs before or during menstruation.
How is it Different From a Menstrual Headache?
You’re probably wondering — how does it differ from a regular period headache? Here’s how the symptoms of a menstrual migraine differ from a regular period headache:
Symptom 1: Unlike a migraines, a period-induced headache is accompanied by acne, fatigue, joint pain and irritability. As the body prepares for menstruation, it can cause a number of effects of the body, literally tiring you out and making you more sensitive to pain. Regular pain medications cannot always alleviate these symptoms.
Symptom 2: If you have a period-induced headache, you may feel more hungry — you’re more likely to lose your appetite if you have a legitimate migraine. Migraines are usually accompanied by dizziness and nausea, which may make you vomit and lose your appetite. People with period-induced headaches may actually crave more food — it is rarely accompanied by dizziness or nausea.
Symptom 3: You have sudden cravings for food, such as carbohydrates or sweets. PMS can cause you to crave high caloric foods, but a menstrual migraine will not cause these cravings. In fact, women with any sort of migraine rarely crave any food because of the nausea. Overall, menstrual headaches are more likely to affect the entire head and cause moderate pain, unlike menstrual migraines — they cause more severe, debilitating pain.
Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010
Your doctor will want to know the details of your migraine symptoms. You can help your doctor treat you for your specific set of symptoms by answering the following ten questions on paper:
One: How frequently do you have headaches?
Two: Do you have combinations of different types of headaches, such as frequent mild headaches with occasional intensely painful ones?
Three: How many years have you been suffering from headaches? How old were you when the headaches first began?
Four: Where does the pain set in? Does this pain spread over several areas or is it limited to one spot?
Five: How long does the headache pain last? Does the pain have a duration of one hour, several hours, a full day or longer?
Six: How intense are the headaches that you experience? Can you still perform your daily routine, or are you totally incapacitated?
Seven: What words would you use to describe the pain?
Eight: Does the pain increase as a result of physical exertion? Likewise, does the pain decrease when you lie down?
Nine: Do you experience anything about twenty minutes prior to the onset of the migraine? Do you see lights or any extraordinary visual hallucinations? Do you experience numbness in your arms or legs?
Ten: Substances: Are you taking any prescription medications? Do you smoke or drink alcohol? Do you eat foods containing MSG?
There are many different treatment options for various kinds of migraines. Your doctor should be able to tailor a plan based on the answers given to the questions above. Hopefully, by providing the information to your doctor, you will no longer suffer unnecessarily from migraines.
Monday, April 12th, 2010
There are migraine symptoms that may indicate a more serious medical condition. The following is a list of migraine symptoms that require a visit to a doctor:
One: A very sudden headache that gets progressively worse, and may include nausea, vomiting or dizziness (may be caused by a stroke).
Two: A spontaneous headache that is worse than any other headache (may be caused by an aneurysm).
Three: Terrible headaches that start after age 50.
Four: Headaches that are followed by impaired memory or balance, dizziness, numbness or tingling in extremities (may be caused by a stroke).
Five: Headaches that get worse with coughing or sneezing (may be an infection in the brain).
Six: Headache that sets in following an injury to the head (may be caused by a hemorrhage).
Seven: Headaches that are present simultaneously with a fever (may be caused by spinal meningitis).
Eight: A pulsating pain around the eye that may spread to the ear or neck and is not alleviated by pain medication (may indicate a blood clot).
If you are unsure as to whether or not your headaches are indicative of a dangerous medical issue or just an ordinary migraine, you should see a neurologist to be safe.