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cindylee 07-07-2008 03:35 PM

Cluster Headaches....
Cluster headaches are recurring attacks of excruciating, stabbing pain on one side your head, usually behind an eye. Feels like someone is drilling into your eye out the back of your head.
My husband has been suffering from Cluster headaches for many years now, but luckily for him in one way he usually has a couple yrs or more between each batch of clusters,,,His last full blown batch of clusters were back in 2002 and lasted 2 months..with a headache every night, early evening.
He did have just one cluster headache in Aug of 2004 but nothing followed,,,now it is July 2008 and here we go again,,,the last week of June he experienced a couple headaches that at first seemed like a cluster but then went away,,,Well late yesterday afternoon while we were in town he got one,,,the pain came on so fast and was so intense,,he said take me to the hospital...thats were the frustration begins..there really so far in my husbands case,,nothing that will work to stop these headaches,,the odd time a med call Imitrex Nasal if my husband manages to get it right away, ( small window at on set of headache to use the meds) it will stop the full blown headache from coming, but for the most part because he has had these headaches for so long nothing seems to work,,,Demerol does work,,needle form. So yes he has had all the necessary tests done,,etc etc,,seen specailist whom have said to me,,YOU,,have to make sure when he gets one of these headaches you get him to the hospital as quickly as possible so doctor can give him a shot of demerol to kick the headache..there is too much danger for your husband if any one headache is allowed to carry on too long,,,yeh easy to say when each time we go to hospital we see different doctor,,some of which I have reported because they accused my husband of being a drug addict..
Anyhow,,am wondering if anyone else knows anyone with these headaches or any advice,,,would be much appreicated,,,Thanks

debknechtel 07-08-2008 02:44 AM

Hi Cindy I feel for your hubby because I too get cluster/migrain migrains will turn into a cluster headache lasting days. I have also gone to the hospital before to get IV'd with meds...I am not sure what they gave me though.....I know it was not demerol. You can get demerol in a pill format...will your reg doctor not prescribe him a few just for when he has pain. I have learned to live with the pain and find once I kept a journal I could figure out what were my triggers. If my diet has not been good....alot of proccessed food etc is one trigger, lack of sleep, stress, change in humidity because I know what triggers them I can be more aware and try and stop the cycle. As soon as I feel any type of headache pain I take an extra strength advil and half a can bring it down to a liveable headache without the floor spinning on me. I have tried all the migrain meds and they do not help....just make me feel lousy. The best was a migrain med they gave me through IV....I felt like a million bucks after that....wish I could remember the will have to ask a doctor...It did not make me drousy or anything...I remember the doc saying if you feel better once the med is in we know it was a migrain.

Hope he can get soem relief is no fun at all to live with the headaches

Hugs dEbbie

DeBora4BobbyL 07-11-2008 10:49 AM

Cindylee, I know you saw my post on another thread concerning RFT nerve blocks. If you have any questions, feel free to ask me.

cindylee 07-11-2008 11:35 AM

Thanks Debora,,yes we intend to ask Doctor about RFT the next time we see him,,,

ddstaylor 07-11-2008 06:15 PM

Well, it took your e-mail to bring me out of my shell and get me to post for the first time. My name is Darlene. I am from Nashville, TN. I will be 53 next week and I have been suffering from cluster headaches every day for 5 years now. The two unusual things about that is first, men usually get clusters, not women. Second, they call them clusters because they come in clusters and then may go away for months or years before attacking again. I am one of the rare cases that has chronic clusters which occur every day. Now for the things I have learned. Do not ever eat lettuce unless it is organic. No matter how many times it has been washed, it is like a sponge and absorbs the toxic chemicals and preservatives -- especially in fast food restaurants. Another pitfall is nitrates -- these can be found in hotdogs, sausage, lunchmeats, pepperoni, bacon, all the good stuff (LOL). I have found that I can eat a Ball Park frank on occasion and not develop a headache. Also oxygen at 8 ml helps me. I know this is a long post so if you want more info, my e-mail is [Edited by Asst. Administrator to remove personal information. If you would like to contact this member, please use our private messaging system. Thanks, Tami].

DeBora4BobbyL 07-11-2008 06:33 PM

Darlene, welcome to Family Corner! :welcome: Be sure to stop in at the Introduce Yourself forum so that others may greet you! Be sure to check out the Tennessee regional forums if you want to check out others from your area. Do you have children?

cindylee 07-12-2008 12:04 PM

Hi Darlene,,,
OMG,,how do you cope with having a headache each and everyday for that long,,,gosh, I am not the one with the headaches but sure does throw a wrench into our lives each time hubby gets a batch,,
He has seen all kinds of specialist,,and we have found nothing,, no problems health wise no allergies of any sorts which could trigger in any way any one of these headaches.
Yes my husband had uses oxygen to slow the headache down but thats all it does is slow it down a bit. I could go on forever on everything we have been through and everything we have tried,,it can just be soo complicated and frusterating at times

Sammi1961 07-12-2008 01:10 PM

Cindylee, I was diagnosed with cluster headaches in 1982. Now my doctor thinks I have both migrain and cluster headaches. the treatment that worked for me was taking a beta blocker (Inderal) as a preventative but when or if a headache did break through I then took Zomig which is the first medication I have ever taken that actually works wonders. I was then diagnosed with asthma and could not longer take beta blockers (which interfere with Advair) so now take a calcium channel blocker instead and that works well as a preventative too. Prevention of these types of headaches is half the battle and a big thing is to pay attention to what seems to trigger them. for me, my triggers are the barometric pressure in weather (if it is very hot and humid or very very cold and dry I could get a headache), not getting enough sleep and getting over tired, and I have to stay away from certain foods (hard cheeses, red wine, caffeine etc.) I hope your dh is able to find something that will work for him. There are many new treatments out there that can do wonders.

cindylee 07-12-2008 02:20 PM

HI Sammi

Yes my hubby has been on Beta Blockers,,they didn't seem to make any difference,,and doctors have tried the calcium channel blockers but they didn't work either,,cause they are designed for migraines..Now the Zomig,,I have never heard of before..
My husband currently takes Imitrex Nasal,,at the on-set of one of his headaches,,although there are times the headache comes on soooo fast,,there is no time to take the imitrex..and we already know if headache is already going the imitrex will not stop it,,
So then we are off to the hospital,,
And as of yet,,the specialist all say they have no yet figured out if there is any one trigger to his headaches,,,been through tons of tests,,
Thanks,,will check into the Zomig ,,though

ddstaylor 07-14-2008 05:38 PM

I still work full time as a legal secretary. Before the oxygen I was on 11 pills a day for the headaches. I am down to 7 and still get 1-2 minor headaches. I used to compare them to elephants jumping on my eye -- now they are more like rabbits or hamsters. LOL I think women cope with pain better than men do anyway. I noticed that someone asked if I have children. I have a daughter who is 27 and teaches 1st grade. This will be her second year of teaching. When she was 22 she had an accident where she broke her pelvis in 9 places and ended up getting to the hospital with 1/2 pint of blood. Today she walks with no limp -- it just slowed her down on getting her teaching degree. I was just beginning treatment for my clusters when the accident occurred so it was loads of fun trying to concentrate on what doctors were saying when an elephant was jumping up and down on my eye. I sometimes get disgusted with my neurologist but I realize that I've come a long way. Maybe some day they will figure these out!

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