darling_lisa: (Migraine)
So today? Sucked. Woke up feeling a little nauseated and not so great. That rapidly turned into a raging migraine. I tried to tough it out, took a cocktail of Excedrin, ibuprofin, Benadryl and large amounts of caffeine. No luck. By 11 it felt like I was dying. Literally. My head hurt so much I couldn't breathe. So I gave in and took a Zomig.

Now, normally this wouldn't be an issue, I have the Zomig specifically for this reason. They can only be used to treat migraines, and I refill my RX for them every month because I need them. But in their infinite wisdom, the Insurance companies have decreed that I am only allowed 6 tablets a month. Because that is all anyone could need, right?

Except for the part where it can take anywhere from 2-4 pills to treat ONE MIGRAINE. I get on average, anywhere from 6-10 separate and distinct migraines a month. Now not every migraine requires a Zomig, but the ones that last 5 days? Can eat up my entire month's allotment of pills pretty quickly.

So I try and manage them as best I can, saving the Zomig for the ones that are really bad. As opposed to the ones that are just moderately bad. To give you an idea of my scale I'm using here, imagine your head is in a vise that keeps tightening down with every breath you take. At the same time, your brain is expanding and pressing against the confines of your skull to the point where you swear you can feel cracks developing as your bones threaten to explode outwards. Every beat of your heart causes your veins to pulse and feel as if they are expanding so much they are going to burst out of your body. The light feels like ice picks stabbing into your eyes every time you blink, and any sound louder than a whisper feels like a stadium full of people screaming into your ear at the top of their lungs. Your skin is oversenstive, so even your softest flannel sheets feel like sandpaper rubbing you raw, and your body can't regulate your temperature so you alternate feeling as if you are locked in a freezer with feeling like you have been plunged into the heart of a volcano. And to top it all off, you have nausea worse than the worst case of food poisoning that you ever experienced. Water won't stay down, nothing will. That is a moderately bad migraine for me.

I know I am incredibly lucky to have health insurance through my job, and I thank the Universe constantly for the care that I am able to get. But there is something wrong in our health care system. My doctor thinks I should have a supply of 12 tablets a month, but my insurance carrier limits me to 6 every 30 days. And for those 6 pills, I pay 8x my usual RX co-pay. I can't get a second RX for a different brand of triptan, because the limit applies to all brands. If I wanted to I could pay for the additional 6 out of pocket, but at approx $43 a pill, well that's not going to happen. I have paid for one or two pills out of pocket when I'm having a particularly bad month, but financially I just can't afford that on a regular basis.

I had 3 pills I had been hoarding this month. I am going to England in a week and I wanted to make sure I had pills so I wouldn't miss any of my vacation to lying in bed wishing someone would come park their big rig on my head. But I had to take one of my pills, I could not endure the pain. So now I have 2 left. And if I'm very lucky, I won't need those 2 pills before I leave.

I got a migraine while I was in Canada, I spent most of the day mainlining caffeine and puking in public restrooms because I refused to let my migraine rob me of a day on vacation. I don't want to do that in London, but I will if I have to. I will take my cocktail of OTC meds and pray that I don't end up ruining my kidney and/or liver before I turn 50. I will hoarde my pills like they are the last ones on Earth. I will continue to take meds that are used to treat epilepsy off label on the chance that they are helping reduce the frequency of my migraines, and deal with the side effect. I will go to my Neurologist and ask if there is any new insight into what causes migraines or how to prevent them.

And every month I will get my 6 pills and wonder how long they will last this time.
darling_lisa: (Default)
Just a quick babble tonight. May's madness is finally over and hopefully life will settle back down into something approaching normal. Work is busy and I lose my brain on a regular basis but love it. One week to go to Portland and I am counting the minutes.

I owe so many people stories its not even funny... but hopefully soon. I promise. (And I might be tempted to sign up for the RPS BigBang with an angst filled JDM/Kane story in mind... one more day of sign ups and I'm trying to come up with reasons why I shouldn't but it could go either way at this point. /o\)

I am starting to feel healthy again, altho thats pretty much not even close to true. My foot is still borked and I have to call and nag my Dr again this week to find out what we can do next to figure out why. The platelet issues are being dealt with by a hematolagist and I apparently have a slightly enlarged spleen to figure out... And then there is the whole GI issue from the ER to be dealt with (waiting to get in to see a GI specialist for an esophageal scope, yay.) But I feel less freaked out, and aside from the need to sleep 12 hours a day (which I am putting down to doing too much and having blood draws every other week when I already have chronic low blood pressure,) I feel more in control of my body.

Starting to plan going out to St Louis to see Brandon graduate from the Marines in mid July. And my trip to Denver in Oct for WinCon. Lots of little trips this year is making Lisa a happy girl. I made a pact with Vicky that we are going to Europe in 2011, so I have to start thinking about and planning for that soonish. And someone keeps tempting me with the idea of us all taking a cruise to the Bahamas... at $400 all inclusive, the only thing keeping me from saying yes is that it is right in the middle of tax season.

And thats pretty much it for me right now. How are you all doing?


Apr. 9th, 2009 10:48 pm
darling_lisa: (Migraine)
I realized something today. I need to figure out what I am going to do about my job. I have been fighting a migraine for the past few days, and today I had to call out sick from work because I was about to throw up on my keyboard 3 hours into my shift. The headset was pressing my head like a vise and the computer screen was bright enough that I had to squint to look at it through my glare guard.

75% of the year the Topamax controls my migraines wonderfully. I am down to one or two a month and they disappear easily with Zomig. But when you add in the fucked up barometric pressure and wind that we get every spring here in AZ and then factor in the 50-60 hour 6 day week work weeks during tax season and the accompanying stress... it's too much for my body to handle. I have had more migraines in the past 3 months than I do the other 9 months of the year combined. My body is trying to tell me something. Very loudly.

The thing is, I don't know how to fix it. I am going on my 4th year at a company that has been very good to me. I don't know if I can make a transition to non-phone work before next January when this all will start up again. Its all well and good for me to say that I know I need to do something, but figuring out what that is? Whole other story.

I just know that I can't keep doing this. I haven't kept solid food down for 3 days now, it all comes back up eventually. I am prolly overdosing on caffeine and ibuprofin just to try and keep things manageable. I have maxed out on my Zomig repeatedly and can't refill my RX for another 21 days anyways. My head hurts constantly. All I want to do is sleep so I can escape the pain. I've tried chiropractic, I've tried accupuncture, I've tried scary drugs that have warning packets the size of small novels. I watch what I eat and I know what foods to avoid.

Another whiney post, I know. But I needed to get it out and say it. I need a change, and this is my way of telling the universe I'm ready for it. I don't expect to have anything handed to me, but a gentle nudge in the right direction would be fantastic. Point the way, I promise I will pay attention this time.
darling_lisa: (whiteout)
I should be sleeping right now.  You know why I'm not?  Because my entire body hurts.  Like I went out and ran a marathon and then did a triathalon on top of climbing Mount Everest.   Thank you Topamax.  I am at the final level of titration, so this should be the last time my body has to adjust to the level of medicine in my system, but man this one is one hell of a step.  And then some.  Ugh.  But on the other hand... 3 plus weeks with no migraines, and other than a sinus headache and the odd caffeine withdrawl headache, I have been headache free as well.  I am ready to sing praises as soon as the Dr says it isn't killing my internal organs.  

Just finished watching Hedwig and the Angry Inch.  Yes, I realize the rest of the world saw it already, I missed it in the theatres, and my Blockbuster never had it in.  But now I have seen.  And I love.  Altho the end confused me.  Did Hedwig and Tommy merge?  Die? Was it all a dream?  And how much do I love the "take the wig off the shelf" song? OMG.  Freaking with a huge side of Awesome.  Loved the writing and the speech patterns of the characters.  Was interesting how Hedwig seemed to be more gender neutral to me than anything even tho he seemed to identify as female and fell in love with 2 men, but am too sleepy and stupid to go into that coherently so will leave it at Hedwig, yay! and revisit sometime later.  

The weather here is confusing and annoying the shit out of me.  It will be mid to high 60's one day and then low 30's the next.  Was rainy all weekend, then sunny and hot and suddenly cloudy and cold tonight.  I would like some kind of weather that sticks around for more than a day please.   I think that is why my skin is randomly breaking out in dry patches, but it could also be the meds ::shakes my fist:: not sure, but whatever it is, annoying and needs to stop.  

Crimeny, its almost midnight.  I have to be at work at 7.  ::sigh:: Ok, lets try that sleeping thing again. 
darling_lisa: (drugs)
For those of you keeping track at home... day 15 on the Topamax, and day 15 without a migraine.  ::much cheering and celebration:: 

So there you have it.  Tomorrow I step up to 75mg a day.  I'll report back soon.

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