Monday, July 23, 2012

Day 205: Advocate awareness of cluster headache sufferers

Well, this is topic that is near and dear to my heart (along with misophonia, which I think these are both related).

Cluster headache is one of the most painful types of headache. Cluster headache is sometimes called the "alarm clock headache" because it commonly awakens you in the middle of the night with intense pain in or around the eye on one side of your head. Cluster headaches occur in cyclical patterns or clusters — which gives the condition its name.

Bouts of frequent attacks — known as cluster periods — may last from weeks to months, usually followed by remission periods when the headache attacks stop completely. During remission, no headaches occur for months and sometimes even years.

The goal of this blog post is to bring awareness and advocacy to people who suffer from cluster headaches.

I have suffered from episodic cluster headaches for 10+ years. A couple of years ago I was finally correctly diagnosed. A year ago, I was put on a miracle medicinal regimen by highly regarded doctor at Mayo Clinic who specializes in cluster headaches - Dr. Ivan Garza. I owe him so much for putting me on this regimen. Thank you Dr. Garza for giving me 12-16 weeks of my life back.

Below is a picture of me at a peak point of a cluster headache. It's not pretty and it took some swallowing of my pride to post. But. Seeing the images, brings more understanding that this isn't just a headache. If you know someone who suffers from cluster headaches, give them a hug <3

More awareness and advocacy will bring more options for chronic and episodic CH sufferers and will make more medication accessible to them.


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