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Monday, September 15, 2014

Status Migrainosus: A Difficult Week

I'll warn you (and apologize) up-front, this post may be kind choppy...

This has been one of the worst pain weeks I've had in a long time. I've taken migraine and pain meds (maxed out) and rested a lot. My doctor prescribed a round of corticosteroids, which hasn't seemed to offer much relief.

Status migrainosus is basically a severe intensity migraine that is unremitting for more than 72 hours. Now, I have some degree of head pain every, single day. I have chronic migraine, which means that I have migraines 15+ days per month. And, yet, I get these status migraines that I seem to have no way to prepare for. I know, intellectually, that at some point the pain will break. But, it doesn't seem like it, in the midst of the pain, especially when nothing (meds, coping skills, etc) is offering any relief.

Sleep Disturbance
My sleep pattern is completely insane. Since this horrible stretch of migraine pain began, my hours slept per day (can't say per night because some nights were no sleep, but a nap during the day) have been:

  • 8.25 hours
  • 3.50 hours
  • 9.00 hours
  • 3.25 hours
  • 17.00 hours
  • 0.00 hours
  • 15.75 hours
Talk about out of whack! Hypersomnia intermixed with insomnia... quite a toxic combination.

Memory / Processing Problems
Early this week (day 2 of severe pain), my memory was so bad... it was scary! My mind wasn't working at all - I would forget what I was saying, mid-sentence. My difficulties with memory and processing hasn't been that bad in a long time, and it reminded me of some of the struggles I had following my car accident. Strangely, though, I was inspired (and somehow able) to write a blog post, start to finish - When Your Pain is Invisible: You Look So Good. Honestly, I sometimes have more inspiration to write, when I'm at my low (not lowest) points... in the darkness... it's weird.

Irritability
I know that I've been extremely irritable, and not doing a very good job of filtering it. I've found myself snapping easily. It seems uncontrollable, out of my hands. I'm easily frustrated and/or annoyed by the dog, my husband, anything, everything, nothing...

Visual Disturbances
The visual issues I've faced with this migraine attack have been expansive. Aura, blurry vision, trouble focusing, see flashing lights (in all different lighting, from a dark room to bright outside).

And More...
If all of that wasn't enough, there have been so many other symptoms (many more than I'd like to write here)... aphasia, allodynia, hypersensitivity, vertigo, anxiety, depression, fatigue, and the list goes on...

Oh Yeah, Head Pain
If you noticed, I didn't even really mention the incessant head pain, and the neck and back stiffness and pain. The horrendous and unceasing nature of the pain has been paramount in my week... I can't seem to find relief.

Grateful
I will say, though, that I'm grateful to have been able to spend a little time out at a friend's (wedding) couples shower Saturday evening, and with my Mom to visit my grandmother in the hospital Sunday evening. I can't say that it didn't take a lot out of me, or even that it really even distracted me from the pain, but I'm glad that I could be there for those that I care about.