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Siegfried last won the day on January 28

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About Siegfried

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  1. Siegfried

    Chronic Cluster a Year OR Longer?

    In the new ICHD-3 classification, the remission period must now be >3 month to be episodic, if not its classified as chronic while under ICHD-2 you was already episodic with >1 month remission. So a lot of episodic patients became suddenly chronic... quite weird if you ask me.
  2. Siegfried

    Verapamil makes my migraine headaches explode !

    Thanks for the responses ! Batch, thanks for the info ! I used to drink twice a week a cup of hot milk with a spoon of tumeric and black pepper. I stopped that but I started this today again + other supplements. All these things are anti-inflammatory and should hopefully have some effect on the frequency and severity of the CH attacks. Will let you know how it goes. siegfried
  3. Siegfried

    Migraine...I hope you can help

    Hi Wesconsin, Welcome to this forum ! Although this forum is mainly dedicated to cluster headaches, migraine is also discussed often here. If you want to get into a specialized migraine forum, I recommend the folks on migraine.com. There are always huge discussions going on there about treatments and especially the latest ones like Aimovig. Please have a look there. But indeed, 90 % of the posters are women; nothing wrong with that but it is just a fact that migraine tends to appear more in women than in men. For CH it's rather the opposite but these male-female differences are diminishing. Getting control over migraine is not an easy thing. I suffer myself from serious migraine attacks since childhood, I can not remember a time I did not have migraine, and now I am 50 and they are still there, although they have much improved. Since 2012 I got cluster headaches but that is another story. CH and migraine have some overlap but they are two different conditions that have each their own problems. Now what can be done to bring them under control ? That all depends from person to person. For some, magnesium, feverfew, butterbur, ribovlavin (vit B2), CoQ10 can work and some have good results. I never had good luck with these supplements. There is here also a Vit D regimen that brings relief to many CH patients. There are some modifications to make for migraine (Batch, who invented this regimen can explain you all the details) but these are all things you can try. Some have luck with osteopathy, manual therapy etc. if the cause of the migraine is in the neck. I did that as well and it had some effect. Also important is try to get control over your triggers. First you must figure out what your triggers are. Most common ones are glaring computer/smartphone screens - that is a huge one for me, dark chocolate, citrus fruits etc... Also important is not sleeping too long and getting up as early as you can. But I am hugely dependent on triptans. I have always taken Zomig but there are so many you can try. Some are milder and slow acting while others are fast acting and stronger, with more side effects. That is it so what I can tell you. There are others here with migraine and they can tell you their insights and experiences. Anyway good luck and keep us posted ! siegfried
  4. Hi all, I am quite on a bumpy ride lately. After having been hospitalized a few weeks ago, I am back at home for a week unable to work. A new cycle started on Monday afternoon with non-stop attacks every two hours. Serious migraine-like background pain in between so not much relief between the attacks. I passed out 2 times from the pain. 3 Zomig nasal sprays + 2000 liters of oxygen later, its now Thursday afternoon and it has finally stopped. I still have now a light migraine headache on the left side (while clusters are on the right) but that means it has ended. A left side migraine always concludes a CH cycle which usually only last 3-4 days but are super intense and concentrated with a non-stop barrage of attacks, the next one a bit more painful than the previous one. I hope I have a few weeks of relief until the next cycle. Anyway, I did a second attempt with Verapamil. Tried it previous year but I gave up at 240 mg because of the side effect on my nerve system. I also remember that during that time I had terrible migraine attacks. These should normally be more or less gone, but I remember a sudden very explosive flareup of migraine. Did not make any connection with Verapamil though, until now... At my second attempt, once I went from 120 to 240, exactly the same things happened again. These pesky side effects on my nerve system and sudden very severe migraine attacks that came out of nowhere and did not react on any medication (even not my trusted Zomig pills). I started to make the connection between the two and I immediately stopped the Verapamil. So never this medication again ! For an effective preventive, there is not much left in my case... They want to try lithium. Anyone any experience with that ? I also increased the D3 again. Unfortunately it has never done much but at least, i take it as one can not go wrong with this. I thought that CH starts to taper off at later age but not as far as I can see for myself. Just passed 50 now and I have the impression the CH is getting worse in stead of getting better. Lets see what the future brings... All the best ! siegfried
  5. Siegfried

    Question about prednisone

    I am currently on Prednisone. Arrived in the ER previous week. Attacks started on Friday and continued into Saturday but the background pain between attacks did not go down anymore. Normally it falls back to KIP 1 or 2 but now it went just to a 6 or 7 and with the next attack back to a 8-9. Could not stand the pain anymore and triptans gave only relief for a few hours. I saw no end in sight so I tried my luck in the ER on Saturday evening. Drove to there between two attacks and at my arrival, got already another one. They put me straight onto the oxygen to make it a bit milder which worked well. Then they gave me a shot of Prednisone in my vain in my arm and I must say... after an hour, the pain started to go away. I was astonished by the effect ! Now I am taking 32 mg every day now for a week and had not an attack anymore since then... only 1 hour some mild-sharp pain in my eye on Wednesday but nothing serious. Tomorrow I start to taper down... will see how that works out. And yes, steroids feel like.... steroids. I have lots more energy, don't need much sleep, very clear thinking and also very positive thinking. Hope I don't get a backslash when start tapering down. They also asked to try the Verapamil again. So now I am my first week on 120 mg and end next week, I need to go for an EG to go to 240 mg. Hope this time it helps as last time Verapamil did not do much. I can not tell you if it brakes cycles or not as I don't have that much cycles. I have more like a chronic pattern with attacks in the weekend and reasonable days during the workweek all year around. However last week of August it got exceptionally bad so maybe yes I am in some kind of cycle. All the best ! siegfried
  6. Siegfried

    Do you know they're coming?

    From my experience in this forum, most people get some warning sensation that something is coming. I am not episodic but when a batch of these things is coming my way, the first what I feel is pressure in the right ear, then the eye start to feel like numb and swollen just like the eye area got stinged by a few wasps.
  7. Siegfried


    Hi Barnabus, From my experience, just telling like it is, is the best way forward. I am very open with my condition towards my coworkers, manager, family, friends etc... Things I mostly tell are like It's a very rare condition, a neurological disorder that only a few people have. I was unlucky to drew the bad fate and now have to deal with it and it will not go away anytime soon I tell how an attack feels, how 'clusters' work and that there are fixed periods that I am good and others that I am much worse. Sometimes I let them see a youtube video on how an attack looks like I also talk about the medications we are using: oxygen, verapamil, medrol, triptans etc... all heavy stuff; so next time they won't recommend you an aspirin I usually say also that I am still lucky I can have a more or less normal life with this. Many CH sufferers are completely disabled. It's a heavy condition to deal with. No need to downplay but just stay objective and don't fall into self-pity or compare yourself openly with others with other conditions. Just tell the facts, not your interpretation of the facts. This way I have actually never encountered anybody who told me to take an aspirin, or lay a bit on my bed or something because they have some background of what it is. They know it's not a usual headache. If they do not have this information, you can not expect people to be aware and react in a right way. There are so many diseases out there and unfortunately cluster headache contains the word 'headache' so that's what they think it is... Paroxismale hemicrania patients are better off... although the condition is nearly identical, the name sounds very scary and people won't think of a headache Best Regards ! siegfried
  8. Siegfried

    Just a question

    Migraine yes. That is why I haven't sit in a sofa for the last 40 years or lay down on my back... it comes very fast, as you say in around 20 to 30 min. I had to get used to sit always on a straight chair.I don't know how that is caused but I assume it has to do something with the pressure in the neck siegfried
  9. Siegfried

    Simple Technique to Abort Headaches Right at Onset!

    "Discovered the cure" is a very bold statement ! But nevertheless, if it works for you... great and if it can help someone else... even better . It does not cost us anything to try it out ... Thanks for sharing your method ! siegfried
  10. Siegfried

    Newb here

    Ketogenic diet is something else you can look at. It seems to have a positive effect for people with CH who have tried it.
  11. My wife has a friend with TN and its far from a simple disease... also very difficult to treat it seems. Medications that work initially running out of steam after a while or have horrible side effects.
  12. Siegfried

    Hemicrania that mimics CH

    That is a very good recommendation ! I would say.. if your pain does not respond on triptans, then it's time to look at hemicrania. I have an excellent response to triptans but my CH is so hemicrania alike that I still tried Indocin. Of course it was negative... it did not work. My doctor told me not to think too fast it's hemicrania. Because hemicrania is very rare. The rate for paroxysmale is 1/50000 while for CH is 1/1000. 2/3 of the hemicrania patients are women so if you are a man, the chances are much bigger that your CH diagnosis is the correct one.
  13. Siegfried

    Just diagnosed with clusters

    Hello, If your migraine attacks shows cranial autonomic symptoms, there is a good chance that the O2 will also work for migraine but the approach is different. I will tell you what works for me: CH: Need the Optimask, 15 liters/ min for 15 min but in my experience the oxygen start to work already after the first minute. Breath deep in and out through the mouth and with every outbreath, make sure your lungs are as empty as possible by doing an extra crunch. I can seldom abort an attack but it bring the pain down with around 70-80 % after a few minutes of oxygen. Migraine: A normal rebreather mask, that will give you lower oxygen concentration works better. The Optimask does not give good results for me. Breath through the nose only, slowly and try to get the oxygen go up to the sinus as high as possible. Don't breath through the mouth... that will do nothing. Do at least 30 min. Very important for migraine is that you need to be on time. Once the attack really sets in, then oxygen will not work anymore. While with CH, oxygen can still bring down the pain with 70, 80%, it will not happen with migraine. The pain will at maximum decrease slightly during the therapy but when you stop oxygen, a few minutes later it comes back and even harder than before. So it is very important to start a the slightest sign of migraine. With lots of experience and timing, you can use oxygen as preventive.
  14. yeah that is a good one ! I have both and even don't know where to start First thing what I want to say that they are both a complete nightmare but they are completely different. Don't believe people who say that the one is much worse than the other. Usually they will tell you that CH is much worse and migraine is a piece of cake. Well these people can have my migraines for a few days and they will sing very fast a few tones lower ! Both conditions are very serious. Here on this forum, there is a certain percentage of people who want to make an end to their lives because of this condition. Well, go to the migraine.com fora and you will see that migraine can hit as hard as CH. I assume you are a CH patient and so you will know how CH feels. The migraine pain is different. It's more diffuse all over one side of the head and indeed you are right; it feels a bit like a heatstroke. It's not a brutal pain but it immobilize you completely. The biggest challenge is however not the pain. It's moderate and never goes over KIP 4. But the nausea, photophobia and phonophobia.. that is the problem. When I have migraine, I am terrible ill, can not eat, can not drink, can not stand any light, can barely breath and it just all hurts. I always say... take the worst flue you ever had and double that feeling. The other problem is that a migraine attack does not go away in 15 min or 3 hours. Untreated it can stay up to 72 hours and during that period it never diminish in intensity. That is damn a long time and I can assure you when the attack is finally over... I feel more dead than alive from exhaustion.
  15. Siegfried

    With my two feet back in clusterland

    Hi dmlonghorn, That is interesting it gives exactly the same symptoms. I was only a short time on verapamil around a year ago. My symptoms is pure migraine and I can't stand it.... especially this takes +48 hours when untreated. You have high fluctuations in your hart rate which is indeed verapamil related My CH is kind of weird. It starts always with a glowing and full ear and some pain in the eye but the first hours I can not yet determine what it is going to be. If the pain increases but stays diffuse and I start to feel nausea and feel I do not want to stay up anymore and can not concentrate on anything, then I know its the migraine. But if the nausea not come and I start to have short spikes of very strong pain around my eye and forehead and start to rock back and forward or walk around.. then its CH. A CH cycle usually takes around 3-4 days with nearly constant low-level pain but Zomig can stop them completely. Migraine usually takes 36 hours. Are you a migraine sufferer as well ? siegfried