Catchup time or What the Hell is going on?

Its been one of those weeks ….

My specialist gave up on me, I’m allergic to the water supply, family dramas galore and in the tradition of the best songs my best friend’s dog died.

The sad news first: Tuesday morning I received a txt from Miss A. Her beloved Tane had just died.  She was gambolling around the yard then just laid down and died, they think it was a stroke. So a good way to go – she was happy and well-loved.  Miss A is of course as heart-broken as any of us would be.  Tane was the canine that turned a life-long cat person into a dog-person; truly an exceptional personality! And one that will be sorely missed 😦

On Monday:  We saw my world leading consulting neurologist on Monday to report that the Parnate was a failure. He didn’t believe the side-effects I had while on the drug.  “It’s supposed to be an anti-depressant; it’s not supposed to make you depressed!” and then he prescribed one last course of drugs. A 3-5 day lignocaine infusion.

Unfortunately in Australia, this infusion is only legal for emergency use.  So to be eligible for this I would go into Canberra intentionally place myself to I could get the worse possible migraine triggering, then call an ambulance then convince Canberra’s largest hospital (with chronic bed shortage) that although I have self managed my migraine pain with a cool quiet environment for the last two years, I really now needed to be in a noisy light filled hospital for 3-5 so my specialist can administer this drug.

This drug which has been trialled once in Australia and only gave lasting relief to 4 out of 19 patients. And you want me to talk my way in to an elective procedure via an emergency route. At the busiest time of year. In the busiest hospital in the region.

The specialist said it was up to me to get myself into that hospital bed and to call him in when I was there and there was nothing further he could do for me. This was it. There was no other option. He was out of options. There is nothing further can do for me.  He then walked past both of us out into the waiting room and called the next patients into the office.

To say mum and I were a little stunned was an understatement.  We were shocked.  Shocked and sickened ; at the lack of ethics and we felt cast off; rudderless.

It’s now Friday.  We’ve given it a lot of thought and the one area that Dr Andrews didn’t know anything about was the Implanon in my arm.  A few times I think the different drugs he gave me overrode the implant and I wonder if the implant is playing a role in all of this because there is a link between women 35-45 and migraine and hormones. Dr Andrews knew nothing about artificial hormone regulators or how they affected any of the drugs he put me on.  So we talked all of this through with my GP this week and he gave me the number of a gynecologist in Canberra who specialists in hormone research.  Some gynecologists later (most are only interested in hormonal issues related to fertility it seems and I’m not interested in getting pregnant as a way to relieve the migraine thank you very much) I have an appointment with one in February.

In the meantime I’m thinking I should just get the thing removed and see how things go for the next month anyway.  If it makes no difference I can always get it put back in.

Next issue: Icky.  I’ve been having intermittent without warning explosive diarrhea for a few months.  Lets just say that adult diapers will never be on my fantasy list ever! Euwwwww ….  Anyway it turns out there’s a bug in the local water supply that the locals are used to but I’m not.  So it’s some heavy-duty antibiotics and then bottled water or gin & tonics for at least the next month, preferably two.  The GP recommends the gin & tonics, costs the same as the bottled water but makes Christmas with the relatives easier to bear!  I like my GP 🙂

Which bring us to the last issue: Family.  This one has taken most of the mental energy and time outside of the bathroom this week.  I’ve also been doing a fair amount of Warcraft. Thank you to Stephen for explaining to me years ago how therapeutic pixel-killing really is! Anyway, the house my sister was renting was sold and Kiddo and the kids have to be out by Sunday.  This is unfortunately not the time of year to be looking for a new house to rent, especially in her area.  However as Master 5 is enrolled in the local school to start in February she really wanted to stay local, so finally she found a place in Thursday.

In between trips to the bathroom and the GPs I gave Kiddo lots of packing advice and encouragement and helped mediate family dynamics.  Who knew all those trainer  mediation skills and techniques would work on family members ?!

So this morning mum and I made a heap of sandwiches and a big thermos of tea and mum;s driving that over and bringing the grandkids back here.  Dad’s turning up over there and helping Kiddo and her partner do the actual move. I’m getting dressed shortly, baking a cake for the kids and hiding all the Christmas presents before Master 5 sticks his goddamn nose where it don’t belong.  Hmmm better do that bit first.

So yes – migraine city for me for the weekend, but this way Dad Kiddo and her partner can her stuff moved to the new place without the kids under foot.  And over here, Master 3 and Master 5 can play outside with Grandma while I continue to wonder why we do not spend more time decorating the bathroom.  Surely we need a trompe l’oeil in there.


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8 Responses to Catchup time or What the Hell is going on?

  1. Jess says:

    I am picturing a trompe l’oeil in shades of brown. This is not a good look. As for the reast : Bugger!

  2. kay jones says:

    Right. Firstly; your consultant is a first rate prick at best and at worst he is irresponsible. Obviously the problem with him is that you are a National Health patient (or your equiv). Had you been paying mega bucks as a private patient he would be shitting himself to get you sorted.

    Okay. Forget him, hes past history. Now its down to using what commen sense and logic you, Mum, your GP and we, can come up with. The appointment with a gynae consultant sounds a good step. In the meantime do you need the implant. If you aren’t having sex with anyone it may just as well be removed. At least its one more drug out of the way. Are you left on any other drugs (apart from the antibiotics)? How essential are they? Ask your GP.

    You have 3 months before you see the gynae bloke. Think back about the migraine. When did it start? What was happening when it started? Could it be a stress related migraine? Could it be food related? Make a list of what you eat. Does anything make it worse/better?

    There are also other options. Some of the alternative medicines have been known to work and if the gynae bloke turns out to be dud you could always consider them. Personally I’d start with food. Eliminating almost everything thats known to trigger migraine and then slowly introduce items. Alternatively there’s acupuncure (if only I could spell the bloody word) Thats known to produce results in some people. What about a good Chinese herbalist. After all, how many Chinese do you know with migraine? Finally, there’s always good old hypnosis, especially if there is a stress element in it.

    Okay, I’ll shut up now. Hope the diarrhoea stops soon. Sending hugs although probably should be sending a container load of lavatory paper.

    Hugs from me


    • Mel says:

      The way the Australian system works I currently qualify for the equivalent to National Health but I also have Private Health insurance too, so a foot in both camps. I think Dr Andrews has a very narrow focus and my migraines could not be “solved” within his narrow focus so he gave up instead of broadening his view. What angers me is that he didn’t pass me on to a colleague who works in a related field, he just tossed me in the 20% fail pile and walked away.

      The Gynae is a woman. It is sexist, but I’ve had it with male doctors. From all the independent reading I’ve done, there is a *definite* link between women my age and migraine and hormones. I don’t want to see another male doctore who thinks female hormones are as mythical as the the goddamn G-spot. I’m not taking another male partner who doesn’t know where that is either but that’s another story.

      I started the Implanon ar ound the same time as the migraines. The implanon is working in that I don’t have any periods or any PMS. It is a god-send. It’s what I wished for when I had my first period at puberty. However, as I got this shortly after the migraines started, is this linked to the the migraines hanging around. Is it interfering with the drugs Dr Andrews has put me on? Has the Implanon limited the success of these drugs. The only thing that actually worked, was the DHE infusion in August. And I had a menstual period during that tie I was without migraine. So did the DHE override the Implanon for a short period of time? I can’t find much out about the Implanon on my own. I can only find glossy sites that tell me nothing from the company or scare-mongering sites. I can’t find much medical-based information from home. Implanon seems to be the aspartame of our time. Hence the Gynae consult. However Gynaes aren’t interested in this kind of thing. They’re insterested in women trying to increase the over population of the world. Paassive-aggressive? Nah just bitter and annoyed.

      The migraines are triggered by noise and light, not food. Fluorescent lights (like in govt offices and shops) or full sunlight glaring off pavement. Noise in a specific range of pitch including most power tools, lawn mowers, angle grinders, bathroom extractor fans, music, all music or singing drives my head through the wall. Small dogs barking.Children screaming or shrieking or yelling while playing. Babies crying.

      The only way to keep the migraines in check is to stay home and avoid the noises wherever possible. This is not a solution, this is avoiding the triggers.

      Even without the full-on migraine, my head still pounds every second of every day. It does not stop.

      The diaarrhoea is likewise not getting any better 😦 In fact I think the latest lot of pills for that are making it worse. Don’t worry I’ll sound cheerier when my body feels less like a plastic straw. Such a pity getting drunk is not an option – a good bender sounds oh so tempting. And hey I already have all the hangover symptions!

  3. rocalisa says:

    Oh Mel, it just never ends for you. I’m so sorry to hear this. Kay’s made lots of suggestions there – hopefully there’s something that will help.

    And that specialist is a prick. Good grief, what a way to treat a patient.

    Hugs and good thoughts from over here. I’m so thinking of you.

  4. Nancy Jones says:

    Mel, I don’t know how you manage to keep your sense of humor! You’ve been through the mill, so to speak, and your consultant reminds me of one we had for our Rubella child, born deaf, that we took her to many, many years ago. It was devastating, and we were just kids ourself and many miles from home with no support system. I can only imagine your feeling of helplessness when he left you and Mum nearly open-mouthed, I’m sure.

    It’s been so many years for me, and not being in the loop anymore about birth control, I had to look up to see what your implant was. Personally, knowing all the symptoms you’re experiencing, I would ditch the Implanon, at least for the time being till you know more. Every drug going into your system has some effect, or interaction, on other drugs you get. I’m appalled that the prick, as everyone here is calling him, didn’t know the effect the female hormones have on other drugs. I guess it’s just as well the guy dismissed you. I wouldn’t take any stock in anything he had to offer. Good riddance!

    Kay had some excellent suggestions, but I would offer a small word of caution about the natural remedies. They’re just the ticket for many, but I would check with that nice GP before adding anything natural. It’s my own experience these days, with all the drugs I have to take, that they ask about everything I put into my mouth, including just vitamins, to see if there are any adverse reactions. And my own Dad has had good results with acupuncture (copying Kay’s spelling 🙂 so I would say “go for it” if you eliminate everything else as unhelpful.

    As for the adult diapers, I may have to take to wearing those myself, as age has created havoc with me at night. I go through a couple pairs of underpants and pads a night because I pee my pants before getting to the toilet. Ain’t it just grand, especially with diarrhea! I went through a whole summer last year with that, and now it’s just the opposite, not that you care to know about it, but just commiserating, LOL!!!

    Bless your heart, Mel… I sure hope you get some answers sooner rather than later!

    Love ya!

  5. kay jones says:

    As for the adult diapers, I may have to take to wearing those myself, as age has created havoc with me at night. I go through a couple pairs of underpants and pads a night because I pee my pants before getting to the toilet.

    Hrey guys – now we all know what to buy Nancy for her birthday

  6. ravenshad says:

    I know this much, birth control pills (synthetic female hormones) caused me to have frequent migraines after a few years of taking them, so I had to stop taking them. When I did stop the migraines slowed down to one or two a month, usually with my period. All hormone replacement therapies for women have migraine or headache listed as possible side-effect. So it is distinctly possible that your implant is a contributing factor to your condition. I think you are right in thinking about having it removed to see if that helps.

    I sent you a private email about the other concern I had when reading your posts (I’ve read all the public posts on your blog this evening). I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers that you get some relief soon!

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