Saturday, August 22, 2009

Electronically Transformed

Is The Headache Disappearing?

I am starting to have hope, and that can be a dangerous thing. I have tried to keep optimistic wishful thinking out of the process of working through this occipital stimulator trial. I have endeavored to be as honest as possible about what kind of pain I am having or not having. Despite the pain I have been having from the dreaded passing of the kidney stone, The Headache has settled down and seems to be behaving nicely.

The Headache has been having brief flares of intense pain that quickly subside, instead of hours and hour and hours of intense pain that stayed despite all efforts to reduce it. The rest of the time The Headache has been down in the two to four out of ten range. My medication usage is down also, some days I don't have to take anything at all, and have been able to make do with phenergan and vistaril. I think I may be reaching the end of the bell curve of pain I've been experiencing for the last two years. Finally.

I believe it is the stimulator that is making the difference. I reviewed my pain diaries for the last two years, and my average pain level was between a seven and an eight on the pain scale, with a few months at the completely non-functional nine. I still am experiencing some pain, but nothing at that level and that duration. I keep the stimulator on constantly at a simmer, occassionally bringing it up to a boil. If this is a placebo effect, it sure is a powerful one!

I am able to do some physical activity and not pay for it with hours of increased pain. My blood pressure is staying down (except for the brief and steep rise because of the kidney stone) to my normal 110/70 level. My fasting blood sugar is down to 85, where it was running from 114 to 140. I've lost 10 pounds in the last month because I can move again without my head exploding. Of course being so nauseous from The Belly you can't eat anything helps with the weight loss, but it's not my preferred method. I really need to join a gym where I can swim even in the winter (my preferred form of exercise), but that is going to have to wait until I can return to work full time for awhile. That is where my energy will go to in the next month.

The kidney stones are still in the process of passing. This seems a very long drawn out procedure, but part of this is because I can't keep liquids down consistently. No sleep so far tonight, as I think The Stone is on the move again. It sure has thrown a damper on my work week, and my progress in getting the sun room cleaning project finished. The Belly doesn't like The Stone either. Wish I had an electrical stimulator for The Stone and The Belly!


  1. I'm really glad the stimulator is giving you some relief. I am SO interested in pursuing non-pharmaceutical remedies for my head, and your experiences are giving me hope. (But tentative hope, like you say, because another disappointing therapy is almost worse than the the headaches themselves, right?)

    I'm sorry for the stones, though. I passed a teeny one, once, and it was torture, so I wish you a speedy recovery!

  2. I think my stones were the size of boulders by how they have felt!!! :)

    I'm cautiously optimistic. I run the stimulator 24/7 per instructions. If I don't want it on, the instructions are to way down low but not off.

    Different headaches have different strategies on use I suppose.

    This being a blind study, I'm not supposed to say whether or not I have a "real" working stimulator, but the results I think are speaking for themselves. I am on virtually NO medication at this time and am in minimal pain. Knock on wood! I hope this study will make it easier for other people to qualify for this for headache treatment.