Ice Pick Headaches 101- my agonizing life altering journey

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I'm writing this discussion based on the fact that there is not enough information out there for people who are going through this horrific life altering pain. 12 months ago I was at race track in September 2015 and became very seriously ill with heat stroke. When I returned home I started out with a migraine (which I've never had before) for 3 weeks straight and had really bad dizziness. I could believe the amount pain I was in and that fact that I wasn't dying. I went to the hospital multiple time, went to see doctors. They put multiple different medications for both dizziness and migraine. Nothing worked, nothing broke the cycle. Until maxalt. Maxalt atleast broke the cycle but I still had a headache every single day. Literally! The only time I wasn't in pain is if I was sleeping.

At this point I literally thought I was dying. I was certain that I had developed a brain tumour or the fear of having a brain anneurysm on the verge of rupturing. I cried everyday, day in and day out. I had just recently moved in with my boyfriend and his family and I couldn't have made a worse impression on myself. I was embarrassed at the fact that I was crying so much and literally couldn't even leave my room. I had an ice pack constantly wrapped around my head and eyes and I slowly went into a slump of depression.

I had literally just straightened my life out, I was starting a new job soon as my career and had met the perfect person I wanted to spend the rest of my life with. I then had it all crash down on me when this terrible thing happened to me. I constantly felt like I was dying, I was so dizzy I couldn't walk, my anxiety was so bad it felt kirk I was going to pass out. I almost called 911 a few times when i was left alone cause it was so bad and I didn't want something bad to happen with no one home. I had to take a 3 week leave of absence from my other job. It was terrible.

I was on the internet everyday looking for answers and everything just made me anxiety worse. I went chiropractors, a therapist, a neurologist, ENT doctor, naturopath, family doctor. Everything, I had MRI (on both my head and spine), CAT scans. Everything was clear. I had perfect scans. But yet I still wasn't convinced that I didn't have an aneurysm somewhere in my brain. I put my family and my boyfriend through hell. I was terrified at the fact that this was the end for me.

Then in December the stabbing pains started. Everyday all day 200 plus times a day. A pain that it so indescribable that it brings you to your knees. This went on and on forever, it now took the place of the migrianes and occurred everyday. I still got migraines but never at the same time as the ice picks. I always had one or the other. at this point I had started my new job (which was supply at the Schoolboard) which was great cause if it was a really bad day I didn't have to take the call. But I wanted to take calls everyday cause I loved my job. Having to put a fake face on everytime I went it was exhausting. The pain was so bad and I couldn't even express it. I was taking mint extract and practically pouring it on my head to take the edge off.

It wasn't until April 2016 I decided to try a medication that i was previously on that I didn't give much of a chance and stopped it the first week I was put on it. Nortriptyline, the thing that saved me from pretty much ending my life. I took the minimum dose for 2 weeks and finally I went a fees days without the pain which I had never experienced. Then it came back. So uped the dose to 20mg took the pain away for 3 weeks. Then it came back a little, so I started staking 25mg and finally it's gone. I get them very rarely but I was finally able to start piecing my life back together after it completely destroyed who I was. I didn't even know who I was anymore. And God bless my boyfriend who stood by me and actually believed it was something I wasn't making up. I had gained a lot of weight from being depressed and on an antidepressant (nortryptline) so I was finally able to exercise again.

Yes nortryptline is an antidepressant but it's mostly commonly used for nerve pain and migraine prevention. It most definitely worked for me and changed my life. It does make my heart beat weird but I had a heart halter monitor and they said everything was ok. Ofcourse now I'm a really bad hypochondriac because of everything I went to but I'm slowly rehabilitating myself back to who I use to be. I really hope that my story has helped someone else out there that may be going through the same thing. Feel free to ask me any questions

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8 Replies

  • Posted

    Sorry for your struggles! I too went through a time when I thought this was the end... It was horrifying to think I might have to live with the daily misery. I too started Nortriptyline along with other treatments. I hadn't given it credit, but maybe that's what did the trick.

    Thank you for sharing! It may very well save others from going through the same ordeal!

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  • Posted

    Thank you for sharing your story. I'm going through the same thing for over 9 months. Crying every day and want to end my life becouse the pain. So depressed and has a bad anxiety now. All my tests are ok and all my doctor saying is anxiety. The problem is I got this head pain and heat in my head when I went on clonozapem. I'm women and 55 years old had a happy healthy life before the medication destroyed my life. Right now I'm on remeron 7.5 mg and I'm sleeping and eating what I could not do before but dos not help for my pain in the head. I will try you medication. 

    Thank you again and God bless you

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    • Posted

      I was getting the burning pain in my head as well. It's terrible. And not to many people are very understanding or supportive about. People will think it's made up. They blamed mine for anxiety too. But they were wrong. I kept pushing, kept calling, until something was done. Don't let them try to push you aside. And give the medication time to work. You may even have to go at a higher dose. Trying can't hurt. You will get really weird dreams at first and possible weight gain. But once your body adjusts everything will be back to normal. Anything beats living with the pain.

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    • Posted

      Hi, it's me again. Can I ask you if it was not anxiety what do you think coused this terrible pain? You  said they were wrong.

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    • Posted

      For it turned out to be chronic migraines accompanied by ice pick beaches. Migraines can vary in pain. They could burn, they could cause you to be dizzy, they could be painless but cause hallucinations. Migraines are so complex that we really don't know the power and effect they have on our bodies. Then it only makes our anxiety worse because we're scared and don't want to believe "it's just migraines" don't ever let someone justify that migraines are not that bad. Also another thing that could be a possibility is neuropathy or hemicrania continua. Those two have similar symtoms as what I have

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    • Posted

      My neurologist and family doctor told me is anxiety. My symtoms is different than migrain. My husband belive is withraw from stoping 2 medication. I just wants this to end. I never had any problem until they put me on clonazepam. I had nausea and I could not eat or sleep and I ask for sleeping pills and I got clonazepam. I did not even know what I taking until I started to get bad anxiety after 4-5 weeks of using it. They told me to stop taking it C/T. !!!! Then my hell started. I'm happy you find something what is working for you I hope i will find one day too. Lot

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  • Posted

    You aren't alone. Unfortunately there are thousands of us out there.

    So ive been like this for 8years. In the mean time i have been diagnosed with endometriosis. If you have any abdominal pain. I could be worth looking into. I can take the pill. Im on progesterone only. My headaches are alot less debilitating but are still there.

    Norityp is newer than amitryptiline. Sorry can't spell. It is more effectuve for headaches because its is less 'clean' it also mean it has more side effects. But living in chronic pain leads to depression. Well i did for me. Amitryptiline has improved my quality of life. Sandomigran makes a slight difference. I'm sure you have tried them all too. They onky other thing is, migraine suffers have been linked to low magnesium. Low magnesium causes muscle spasms. Neurologists suggest mag chelate.

    All the best. Hope i helped. Don't give up hope.

    Never think you are a hypochondriac. If you get that vibe from a doctor. Get a new one. X

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  • Posted

    You aren't alone. Unfortunately there are thousands of us out there.

    So ive been like this for 8years. In the mean time i have been diagnosed with endometriosis. If you have any abdominal pain. I could be worth looking into. I can take the pill. Im on progesterone only. My headaches are alot less debilitating but are still there.

    Norityp is newer than amitryptiline. Sorry can't spell. It is more effectuve for headaches because its is less 'clean' it also mean it has more side effects. But living in chronic pain leads to depression. Well i did for me. Amitryptiline has improved my quality of life. Sandomigran makes a slight difference. I'm sure you have tried them all too. They onky other thing is, migraine suffers have been linked to low magnesium. Low magnesium causes muscle spasms. Neurologists suggest mag chelate.

    All the best. Hope i helped. Don't give up hope.

    Never think you are a hypochondriac. If you get that vibe from a doctor. Get a new one. X

    Report

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