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Posts posted by CHfather

  1. I apologize, Jl.  I appreciate your concerns about bar status, and therefore very much appreciate your willingness to participate here at all.

    As I recall, there was a "church" in the 1960s, referred to as the Boo-Hoos as I recall, that declared the taking of LSD as one of its sacraments.  A District Court judge rejected its claim to the religious exemption.  Long time ago, but then, I was roughly your age back then.  I'll bet if one were to read the case, what one would see is that the judge didn't like this "church" (one of whose tenets had something to do with the need to blow up Saturn before it was too late) or its nasty drug practices (big on marijuana, too), and so he found a way to reject an exemption claim that perhaps should have held up.

    Just as an additional point, it would seem from what you say (which I don't doubt) that "we" wouldn't actually have to form a "church" at all, but each person could just assert his/her private religious commitment to psilo or acid as part of a religious belief system.  Probably get the Boo Hoo outcome either way, though.

  2. I have never tried any of these busting methods as I think its illegal even with the seeds 

    Jl, may your CH always be so manageable that you can maintain your legal purity! The seeds are not illegal. Compounding and drinking them is a Schedule III offense.

    If I joined the CH religion, would I have to give up my current religion, which allows me to drive 95 miles per hour whenever I feel like it?

    Congratulations on being nearly through the law school ordeal, and good luck with the bar exam!

  3. Thanks for the update John!  All information -- especially good news like this -- is much appreciated.  And of course it's great that it's worked so well for you.

    I have three questions.  When you say you take 3 D3s at 10AM and 3 with dinner . . .  (1) What's the strength of each of the D3s you take (1 IU? 5 IU?)?  (2) Do you take your 10AM D3 with food (I've read that one should take them with food, since they're fat soluble)?  (3) Are you also taking the cal-mag-citrate that's recommended, or maybe a strong multi vitamin that has those ingredients?

  4. I just spelled this mushroom's name with only one "i" and had a fun experience with the subject line, not unlike kaboom's with Dan's moniker. 

    But seriously, folks . . . I just read this elsewhere, and figured I'd ask, silly as the question seems, whether anyone here has tried it or something similar:

         >>>I also noticed that since I started eating shiitake mushrooms with a meal at least three times a week, it's been nearly a year since I've had a cluster headache outbreak.<<<  http://www.shroomery.org/forums/showflat.php/Number/13806167

  5. Glenn, glad to have a name for you.  Mine's Jerry.  I remember your vivid early posts, but what I don't remember is whether we ever convinced you to get oxygen and use it.  That's one way to potentially test whether it's CH or migraine or something else that you have, since oxygen works with CH but not migraine.  Better, of course, to see a knowledgeable doctor at a headache center.  I just looked at the place at ouch.com (another CH site) where they list recommended doctors, to see what there might be there in the Pelican State/Sportsman's Paradise -- but they just "updated" that page and it's not showing Louisiana at all.  You might check there in a day or two to see if they've fixed that -- or maybe there's someone here who could help you locate a skilled doctor near you.

  6. Les, you devote so much time so helpfully here that I hate to be a nag, but I'm wondering whether you might be able to get around to the question of using D3 and LR simultaneously toward treating CH.  Each has proven beneficial for many but not universally for everyone.  If they're not contraindicated somehow, it seems potentially advisable to me to use both.


  7. Having been away from my computer for a few days, it's all I can do to catch up with so many posts here, so I just wanted to say thanks, t'asian, and to say again that it would be lovely if we could all come together around something, or some things, to put concerted energy behind. I will raise this topic again, probably (again) in relation to the forthcoming conference.

  8. Les, the basics of the D3 therapy are 10,000 international units of D3/day, 2000-4000 mg of Omega3 fish oil/day, and two calcium citrate tablets formulated with D3, magnesium, and zinc/day.  It seems generally agreed as people feel their way through it that (a) the D3 is the essential component, and (B) people will find somewhat different dosages more suitable, based on experience. 

    As I read it, I think the 10Kish  is recommended during cycle and 5Kish is recommended for maintenance.

    It's a long and convoluted thread, which can be found here: http://www.clusterheadaches.com/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1291969416/0

    Your insight would be much appreciated. 

  9. Davy, another thing about steroids is that they are a known cause of a very unpleasant condition, called avascular necrosis, in which bone dies from lack of blood flow (often in the knees or hips, requiring replacement of those joints).  It's not something you have to worry about, probably, from a few uses, but I believe there are people at this site who have experienced it and would attribute it to long-term use of steroids to treat CH.  I had it in my knee.  Not fun.

  10. Having guys like Dan and Jeff -- and so many others at this site -- on your side is like going to the Mayo Clinic, rascleo.  Great advice, great wisdom, genuine compassion -- only better, because they'll stay with you until your situation improves.

    I would suggest that you order some RC (rivea corymbosa) seeds right away.  It's completely legal to buy them and have them in your home, and they're not expensive.  Then you'd have them if you decide to "detox" and try them.  Here are some sources:





    Also, if you decide to move up to a regulator with a higher flow rate, maybe along with an O2ptimask, both of which many people swear by, you can get those at these places. 

    25 lpm regulator, O2ptimask, demand valve:  http://www.lifegas.com/gas_devices_and_therapies/special_oxygen_needs.asp

    25 lpm regulator: http://www.madamedical.com/merchant.mv?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=MM&Product_Code=R1...

    Regular and higher-flow regulators: http://www.floteco2.com/htm/Products/Regulator_Page_&_Images/B-Regulators.htm. A Clusterbusters member writes, "They have ones that go way high (I think mine goes to 60 LPM), and last time I checked they will overnight ship. I had to call them to figure out what would be the best of their regulators to order for my O2 tanks though -- it wasn't clear to me online."

  11. I don't feel too good about already calling my doc a few days after she started me on a (working, so far) treatment, and saying "hey I decided to go for another treatment instead!" if you get what I mean.
    Totally get it.  You've done a great job of preparing yourself with knowledge and options.  Keep in touch.  Let us know how it's going.

  12. Christinauj, so sorry to hear about your suffering, and your mom's!  Everyone here can relate to your pain and your fear, and they will help you at least make it manageable, if not defeat it altogether.

    Yes, as Arcan says, please go back up this thread to my post to Arcan (and read all the posts in this thread, which suggest some other things to do until you get oxygen, such as chugging RedBull). 

    The advil probably won't help a bit -- and neither, unhappily, will any other pharmaceutical pain reliever.  You gotta get oxygen, fast!  Please read this: http://www.clusterheadaches.com/cb/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1299901790


    I strongly recommend that you start a new thread so that more people will see it and you will be easier to find.  But however you do it, post your questions and they will be answered.  In the short run, you need to get in touch with your doctor and get oxygen prescriptions for you and your mom.  But first, read that file I linked you to, so you know what to ask for--what to demand.  Even when a doctor, such as Arcan's, is on the ball enough to prescribe oxygen, they still can mess up the prescription (as Arcan's doc did).  The sooner you do all this, the less time you will be spending pleading with God (an experience very familiar to many people with CH).

  13. We are experiencing internet phone tag.

    As to your other musings, I think I may have touched on them

    Let me try to prevail on your kindness and restate my musing. You took LR for one high-dosage period, a stretch of two/three weeks, at least as far back as last December. You are chronic.  Since that time you have not had to re-dose at high levels, but only have taken LR in small amounts as a precaution or as an abortive.  This suggests to me that maybe one high-dosage 2/3-week period is preventive regarding future CH attacks.  Do you think that if an episodic took LR 3x/day for 2 weeks when out of cycle, that might prevent a next cycle?  Or do you think that CH somehow has to be present (that is, that an episodic would have to be in cycle), for LR to have an effect?

  14. Les, I see you posted while I was preparing this.  Thank you for answering Arcan so quickly and thoroughly!  Arcan is taking verapamil: Would that affect the licorice root's efficacy?  Arcan is considering imitrex: I think you have said that that would likely interfere.

    I'd like to add my own two cents of curiosity.  As I understand it, you took the licorice root 3 times a day for about two weeks, and then you cut back quickly (because of the powerful potential effects of the LR), and then you stopped taking it except as an occasional "antidote" for conditions that typically trigger you, or as an abortive when you felt triggered.  So it seems that, unlike practically everything else that people here use, licorice root might be basically a "one-and-done" preventive, with small usage later to prevent/abort in particular circumstances.

    We know that it worked for you when "in cycle" (since you were intensely chronic), and it seems to have worked for some episodics when in cycle -- but is there reason to think that if taken out of cycle at your original levels (3x/day for 2 weeks) it might have a long-term preventive effect?  Or even if taken out of cycle for longer periods at lower levels (1x/day for several months) it might have such a preventive effect?

    I suspect your answer might be "I don't know; hasn't been tried."  But I'm wondering whether theoretically it seems to you that the anti-CH effects might occur whether or not one was in cycle -- it kind of seems that way considering your experience.


  15. I don't recall him mentioning verap as something that gets in the way.  I do think he would say that imitrex does get in the way.  He did say that you should check with a doctor or pharmacist before starting licorice root if you are taking any prescribed meds. 

    For "preventing" during a cycle he recommended a 3-times-a-day regimen, but he said he got off that after a couple of weeks because that's a high dosage of a strong medicine.  (That's why I'm not sure about "preventive" use off cycle -- it doesn't seem that you could take "preventive"-level dosages for any extended time.)  My daughter, along some people here at this site, really likes it for its mood-elevating qualities.  She takes it once a day.  We're hoping, of course, that maybe that will have some preventive effectiveness.

    The rule here is that there's no such thing as a stupid question.

    If you do try the licorice root, you might save some overall reading time by trying to make sense out of this attempt at a summary: http://www.clusterheadaches.com/cb/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1298659068

  16. Yeah, I started reading that thread but I haven't gone through all 8 pages yet, plus his posts are huge so I figure it'll take me a while 

    I don't think you'll extract a crisp answer to your licorice root question even from reading the whole thread.  Maybe you want to do that just out of courtesy, but I also think you could just ask your question at the end of the thread, if you want to.  I think I can guess what Les's answer would be, but I wouldn't mind seeing it myself.

  17. What has been your experience with all of this, if I may? Have you managed to get it under control?

    It's one reason I'm not a "hero," Arcan.  I don't have CH; I've just been trying to help my daughter and learning as much as I can.  She's episodic (twice a year: when fall changes to winter and when spring turns to summer).  RC and O2 made her last cycle a lot easier and seemingly shorter, and we're hoping that a combination of strategies might prevent or diminish the next one (which we'll find out about pretty soon).  People here were wonderfully helpful to me/us in many ways; I stick around to learn as much as I can and to pay it forward.

    As for her, she has a very demanding, high-pressure job that she's been able to retain despite her CH (her cycles were typically lasting about 10 weeks), and she appreciates how precious life can be a lot more than a lot of her peers do.

    She has low blood pressure already, so she never could take verapamil; she reacted very badly to steroids (she and I are both pretty violently "allergic" to them); she hated the idea of injecting herself with imitrex.  It is suspected that one reason the RC worked so well for her is that she never really had the "busting blockers" in her system (Les has a similar hypothesis about licorice root working better for people who have not used a lot of "mainstream" meds, or not used them in a long time.) 

    Also, her doctors either didn't prescribe oxygen or misprescribed it (with cannula/concentrator), so she suffered needlessly for many years, which is one reason I tend to jump in here when there's an oxygen issue involved.  If I can keep anyone from, as I say, suffering needlessly, it seems important to do it.

  18. With any luck at all, Arcan, there will be a treatment for something like permanent remission of CH before your cycles get worse -- if they do.

    Speaking of which, I haven't been through all the posts yet, but does anyone know if the licorice root treatment could work to avoid cycles?

    Here's the link to Les Genser's thread about licorice root.  I would try to say what I think his view is about preventing cycles, but he has been extremely generous with his time and I'd bet that he will answer a question you put to him there.


    The D3 thread that I mentioned in my first post, over at the ch.com board, contains suggestions that that regimen may be preventing cycles.  That's a good board for you to know about/visit anyway, since they talk a lot more there about "mainstream" treatments like verap and imitrex.

  19. You do a great job for a non-native speaker, Arcan!

    I have found that the word "trigger" is used here and in other CH discussions in a variety of ways.  Some triggers, such as alcohol, seem to create a headache almost immediately in many people.  (But some people are not triggered by alcohol at all, and some are triggered by some kinds of alcohol but not others.)  Other triggers are viewed as bringing on headaches that are worse than "normal," but not necessarily immediately (maybe later that night).  I could make a very long list of things that people describe as triggers, from stress to chocolate, perfume to tobacco smoke, gas, flying in an airplane, etc.  Unfortunately, because CH operates so differently in many ways from person to person, each person kind of comes to identify his or her own triggers.  For many people -- I would say most people -- things that trigger headaches while they're in cycle do not trigger them when they're out of cycle.

    Other people might comment on your decision to go with verap, O2, and other strategies.  I know that for my daughter (whose CH began when she just a little older than you), and I think for many people, her CH attacks were more manageable when they began, and became more difficult over the years.  For about six years she used nothing at all to prevent or abort attacks, just gutted through them.  So you might also have many years of relatively mild episodes that are manageable for you with oxygen and some other basic treatment.

    This is just my opinion, but if you're having success now, I would say to go with it but always remember that there are options.  I think many people here feel that if busting materials were not "illegal" and therefore not "mainstream," busting would be the preferred medical treatment for CH.  I took me a long time to understand that.  (I put "illegal" in quotes there because it is perfectly legal in most places to own RC (rivea corymbosa) and HBWR (Hawaiian baby woodrose) seeds, from which many people create the busting agent LSA.)  And short of these "non-mainstream" treatments, there are things like licorice root and vitamin D3 that are showing themselves to be quite effective for some people.  I guess I'm just saying that if you start having side effects you don't like (as you said in your first post, the verap does lower your blood pressure), consider the alternatives.  We all will hope that it will be a long, long time between your cycles and that you'll continue being able to manage them well.

    Sorry to go on so long, but regarding oxygen, do you have a good sense of what you have and what you need?  How high does your regulator go?  From what you describe, you might not need a lot of oxygen, but is your tank large and do you have another smaller one for portability?  Are you planning to ask your oxygen supplier for the mask or get one on your own?  No need to answer these questions if you're confident you have what you need, and they might be more important way down the road than they are right now, anyway.

  20. Arcan, there are real heroes here, and, while Ron's kind words are deeply appreciated, I'm not one of them.

    It occurs to me that there are some basic things that experienced people with CH know that you might not be aware of.  For example, many people find that slamming down a RedBull, or some other energy drink with taurine in it, at the onset of an attack helps a lot.  They often do that just before jumping onto the oxygen.  My daughter got by somehow for many years by eating coffee beans at the beginning of an attack.  Ginger tea helps some folks with the shadows, or even by reducing the severity of attacks (a teaspoon of powdered ginger in hot water works).  Melatonin (6-12 mg. taken before bed) has helped some people.  As you look around the site, you'll see many other strategies (capsaicin in various forms, for example).  It's generally true that you have to experiment to find what will work for you.

    Also, I assume you've noticed some "triggers" -- for most people, alcohol is a trigger, but many other things can also trigger attacks.

    Just some basic thoughts.