My Migraine Journey

My migraine journey started off very quickly, painful, and terrifying. I had no idea what was happening since I had not had a migraine before. I thought something else was wrong with me. Maybe my eyes were strained, maybe I was under to much stress, maybe my brain tumor had come back, I just didn’t know.

Photo by Daria Shevtsova on Pexels.com

I would leave work as soon as I could to go home and lay down and pray for sleep. The pain was unlike any headache I ever had and my doctor called me “a headache person”. I was at the height of my career as a Senior Sales Manager, my whole week was spent in front of clients. It was excruciating to make it through a meeting before I could rush home and take a shot.

I was at more than one corporate meeting and have to leave, take an injection, and go back to the meeting. Those injections make you feel very strange, drugged, almost stoned. I would sit through the rest of the meetings and not remember half of what was said. Thank goodness I can take notes.

After experiencing several migraines in a month I went to my general doctor for help. At first, he gave me the injections to take, since I was only having a couple a month the injections should help. When my migraines starting happening every week the doctor put me on Beta-Blockers. I took them until the side effects were too much and I was still getting migraines.

He then put me on a daily pill for prevention and I continued to use the injections. I hobbled along like this for almost two years. Multiple migraines a week, missed work, missed family outings, and missing out on life. Migraines ruled my world.

One day while talking with my doctor and him scratching his head for answers, he said wait a minute, I read an article that might help us. He pulled it out and read it over and made a referral to an Ear, Nose, and Throat doctor.

Sure enough, I had a deviated septum and the pressure was causing my migraines. I had the out-patient surgery and have had far fewer migraines since.

Here’s some technical information about deviated septum.

For most patients, a deviated septum is something they are born with or that they developed as they were growing up. In some cases, a septum can become crooked as time passes or as a result of traumatic injury. Aside from irregular air flow, the following symptoms may arise from a deviated septum:

  • Nosebleeds
  • Congestion
  • Sinus infections
  • Snoring
  • Runny nose
  • Headaches

When a Deviated Septum Causes a Headache

The association between a deviated septum and the migraine condition can be found in sinus infections. When mucus becomes blocked, it can lead to infections, discomfort and headache, which may in turn cause stress and trigger a migraine episode in some patients. It is important to note that the sinus infection is acting as a trigger of stress rather than a direct trigger of migraines.

A deviated septum can be cured with a surgical procedure known as a septoplasty, which can be performed on an outpatient basis. For patients who suffer from major sinus infections, headaches and snoring, a septoplasty can bring about a major improvement in terms of quality of life. This may also be the case for patients who live with chronic migraine conditions, but only if the majority of their episodes were actually triggered by stress emanating from sinus infections or lack of sleep. According to  Migraine Relief Center.

I’m so glad my doctor kept up with reading the medical journals or who knows how much longer I would have had to suffer. If you have constant or more than normal migraines, see an Ear, Nose and Throat doctor. Maybe you will be lucky enough to have a fixable problem.

*Just a note about having nose surgery*

My surgery was around 1994 so the way doctors approach nose surgery may be different today. At the time there were two schools of thought. Packing the nose and not packing the nose after surgery. Thank God my doctor was of the “not packing” school of thought. What that means is after my surgery there were no gauzes packed into my sinuses. I had to take these long q-tips and put Neosporin way up my nose for two weeks. During that time I had to be careful when sneezing and blowing my nose. At the end of the two weeks I went in for a check-up and he gave me the green light everything had healed fine.

The “packing” school of thought is packing your sinuses with gauze. I don’t remember how long you had to leave them in. When it is time for them to be removed, the doctor pulls them out through your nose. Most people I talked to said you want to lose your cookies when they come out. The only comparison I have is when my belly button was pierced. I felt like my stomach was coming up through the needle when he pierced me. To say it was painful is an understatement. 

I hope the technology is different today but you might want to ask your doctor before surgery.

For those of you who continue to suffer from migraines, my heart goes out to you. I know how they can disrupt your day and your life. Keep looking for answers, keep reading the medical journals. 

Melinda

4 comments

  1. Wow this is such an eye opener for me. Quite literally actually as there are days that I can’t open my eyes because of the headache… I’ll definitely look into this with my gp!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ll keep my fingers crossed. Also, don’t forget to have your dentist check for TMJ. I have TMJ and get terrible headahes. I get Botox in my jaw approx. 3-4 months and the pain is completely gone and the headaches are too.

      Like

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