Tuesday, July 10, 2012

An Update (Trip to the ER)

I apologize for being absent. I've been struggling so very much with migraines lately. I had one that was non-stop for over a week - I think we've finally been able to get it down a notch, so it's still migraine-level, but it's manageable right now. I tried all of the treatment options I have from my doctor (four different medicines / medicine cocktails), but with no relief. The pain just continued to worsen.

Wednesday (July 4th) was especially bad. Nothing could help relieve or distract me from the pain. I was crying so much (uncontrollably) in the evening / night - very out of character for me. We decided to go to the Emergency Room - we went to a stand-alone ER (rather than the ER at a hospital, since the closest one is 30+ minutes from the apartment), which is only a mile or so away from the apartment. I was so scared and hurting so badly, and I hated having to leave Honey at home.

The ER wasn't all that helpful - they didn't ask what meds I was on, give me fluids, ask me questions about the pain / symptoms, etc. The doctor came in and said, "Well, I can't prescribe Demerol" (I'm guessing he must've seen something related to my insurance because we hadn't mentioned it Ummm, I never asked him to. I told him that I'd already tried Demerol for this migraine, and it hadn't helped.

They came to give me "meds for the pain and nausea." I had to ask what they were about to give / inject me. They gave me Zofran ODT and Dilaudid. We stayed there a bit to make sure I didn't have a reaction, and then they sent me home (told me to contact my doctor, but to go to a hospital ER if pain continues / worsened). We were only gone for 1.5 hours, so that was great. Thankfully, the meds dropped my pain for a 9 to an 8. I took my night medicine and was able to get a few hours of sleep at a time through the night.

But, the pain continued... Jeremy called my doctor the following morning, and he started me on a two day regimen of corticosteroids. I finished those a few days ago, and I've still been dealing with the pain. I used one of my migraine meds on Sunday, and I've been able to keep the pain to a manageable migraine level (only manageable by not really doing anything but resting) for the past two days. I'll probably need to contact my doctor again tomorrow... I just want this wretched cycle to end!

Drug Recall (Excedrin) Update

Back in January, Novartis did a voluntary recall of several of its over-the-counter medications - Drug Recall: Excedrin, NoDoz, Bufferin, Gas-X. It's July, and these meds still aren't back on the shelves.

The drug recall has spurred a black market for Excedrin formulas. A bottle of Excedrin is going for upwards of $200 on sites like eBay! I suppose this blows my mind even more because Excedrin does absolutely nothing for my migraines. But, I know there are people out there that find it to be the only medicine that helps their headaches.

In a statement, Novartis said it was "working very hard to return products to store shelves." Production is expected to restart production on a "line-by-line, product-by-product basis" to assure quality, and hopes to start restocking some products in the second half of 2012.

Anyone considering purchasing these medications online needs to proceed with extreme caution. Purchasing meds online is risky, since it's not being controlled and you can't be sure of the supplier. Hopefully, Novartis will get these products back on the shelves in the next few months.
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