Well, I hope all of you had a better new year’s eve than I did.
At about 11:30 on Dec 30, I got a migraine. A bad migraine. One of the worst migraines I’ve ever had. I took my meds – the last dose of one of them, which is scary because I can’t get more for a bit over a week and I’ve had 8 migraines in the last 3 weeks, which suggests I’ll have another one before I can get meds. Unfortunately, the med I took the last dose of is my big gun, the heavy hitter that has the greatest likelihood of actually doing something. Sadly, the meds hardly touched it. The high 8 to low 9 (on a 10 point pain scale) headache, the kind where the pain makes it hard to see and I lose track of what people are saying, retreated down to about a 7.
Anyhow, so this migraine was a bad one. The entire front of my head was searing agony. I felt like I had a wall in front of my head, and a wall a couple inches inside of my head, and something pumping more and more pressure into the gap between them, until it seemed certain that my head would explode, even though it didn’t. Add to that the other effects of a bad migraine – the shaking, the violent vomiting, the dizziness, the sensitivity to light and sound – and I was in bad, bad shape. (Thankfully, the boyfriend was okay with being woken up to keep cleaning out the bowl I was throwing up in so I didn’t have to attempt to run to the bathroom while dizzy and when motion made everything hellishly worse. He’s awesome like that.)
At 5:30, I took a dose of another migraine med (that I couldn’t take at the same time as one of the others I’d taken, so I had to wait until it had worn off) and a second dose of one I took before. Medicated, my migraines tend to last about 6 hours at most, so I’d hoped to just wait this one out. Not so. Within half an hour, it was ramping back up to where it had started, and that was when I gave up and we went in to the ER.
(where a bad handling service dog thing happened that I’ll get back to in another post when I’m feeling better)
The real problem with treating migraines is that there’s a limit to what you can do about them. Basically, you medicate and wait – that’s all there is to do. At the hospital, they can (thank god) add some pain meds. So I got another medication plus morphine.
It’s a damn sad thing when a combination of a whole pile of medications and morphine only take your pain level down to around a 3. And it wasn’t long before it started back up again. Before an hour had passed after the morphine, I was back to a 5. At least they managed to get me to stop throwing up.
Eventually, after they added yet another medication and some tylenol, I got down to a 2…if I kept my eyes covered so it was completely and utterly dark and had ear plugs in. At that point, frankly, I gave up. They had me drink some juice, because they were worried that I’d start throwing up again, and when that stayed down, they sent me home to wait out the rest of the migraine.
In all, we were at the ER until 11:30. And let me tell you, with EDS and fibro, the beds in ERs are painful. No matter how often I shift, no matter how many times the boyfriend changes the angle of the upper part of the bed, I know I’m going to come out feeling like hell.
We got home, I ate a couple of theoretically inoffensive crackers, and I threw up. I think all of the throwing up during the night may have started my throat bleeding; it certainly looked like there could have been old blood in what I threw up. Splendid. However, my stomach stopped hurting after I threw up and I was too damn exhausted to care.
I laid down and slept a few hours. I was in so much pain from the combination of throwing up (which is hard on back and abdominal muscles) and being on the ER bed that we were afraid I had the flu as well as a migraine, or something like it. For that matter, I’m still not certain that isn’t the truth – I’m stiff and sore and ye gods do I feel like hell.
But I’m doing a bit better. The headache comes and goes, but stays mild enough that the meds I do still have are enough to take care of it, if I lay down. I’m eating, though not much – maybe a third or a half of a cup at a time, plain steamed rice or chicken noodle soup.
That’s part of the trouble with multiple illnesses – they combine in very annoying ways. The laying down that my head needs is hard on my joints (EDS) and stiffens up my muscles (fibro). The stiffening and tightening of muscles in my back and neck (fibro, probably has an EDS component) is actually a trigger for migraines. The exercise my muscles need because of the fibro would probably make me throw up right now, because my head is still…not happy.
We hadn’t planned on doing much for New Year’s. I’m typically up until 12:30 or 1:00, so the boyfriend had told me I should wake him up for the ball drop, and we’d watch it on TV and have a new year’s kiss and go to bed.
In point of fact, we were both exhausted and cranky, and my migraine recurred, and the noise of our neighbors and fireworks and…everything…was painful. All I wanted was sleep, sleep where my head wouldn’t hurt, and I got kept from that for quite a while.
So I hope you had more fun than I did!