Migraine can and does kill through stroke and suicide.
I have a confession to make….I believe I have had at least one mini stroke. I have discussed it with my neurologist and she told me there is no way to know unless we did a head scan. The damage my brain has endured would make it difficult to confirm. But we both are pretty sure I did. She was unhappy with me that I did not call 911 and has said that next time I may not be as lucky.
I don’t discuss it often because the reality of it is pretty heavy. It was the final straw that made me decide to have migraine surgery about 4 years ago. I was home alone with my daughter. I put her down for a nap as my migraine raised. I believe I had a stroke while I was laying in bed. It was different than others and I actually remember going from severe pain to everything going quiet (including the pain) and a feeling of floating on top of my body. I passed out and woke up 2 1/2 hours later.
My 14 month old daughter was safely playing in her crib when I awoke. As I stood staring at her I decided that there was nothing I wouldn’t do to fight my migraine disease. I had the back of my head, sinuses, and eyelids slit opened, decompressed and scraped in hopes of never having that happen again.
I since have had 2 other incidents that I feel could be a mini stroke again. I live with chronic migraine with aura which puts me at a higher risk.
So why don’t I go to the ER when I get to this point?
- Doctors are famously known for calling migraine sufferers drug seekers and don’t understand how to treat them properly. The last time I went to the ER I was pregnant and they gave me a medication I had a reaction to. Even after disclosing the 3 medications I’m allergic to I was given a medication that is known to have interactions. I was pregnant and lurching off the exam table. I remember the nurse annoyingly saying, “If you can’t talk to me and tell me what’s wrong, I’m not going to help.” I was convulsing, scared and completely unable to speak. I regret not getting her name to report her years later! She made me never want to go back and her attitude is dangerous to my health and mentality of getting help.
- The wait, chaos, judgement and uncomfortable environment is REALLY deterring. At home I have my regime of medication and my support team knows how to treat me. My husband, mom, and sister go into action caring for my children and me with years of experience. I have confidence in our team work.
Please don’t take this as advice************************* I am not proud that I have this mentality and that I have put myself at risk many times. I hope that by sharing my story you take migraines seriously and know that going to the ER is recommended.
It should remind us that we’re not invincible. The signs and feeling of a stroke are very similar to what I live with on a normal basis. Except for the arm pain, I live through stroke like symptoms monthly.
With this said, DON’T IGNORE stroke symptoms with migraine although they are difficult to discriminate between. Ere on the side of caution and when in doubt call 911