I had my first series of Botox injections and survived. It will be a few weeks before I know how much it helps.
Note the positive tone there. I don’t know what we can do next if it doesn’t help.
I’m no baby when it comes to pain, and I managed fine. Still, I will not be bringing my personal photographer (aka my daughter) to document the experience. According to my husband, my grimace will hurt her as much as the injections hurt me. They are brief, and over quickly. Dr. P. said the forehead is the worst for most people, but I vote right side. Apparently I’m a bit tense and I need to loosen up my neck and shoulders, so those injections hurt a bit more than usual.
I wonder if tension is worsening my headaches? I’ll work on that.
No serious side effects. For the first few hours I had brief stinging sensations in some of the injection sites, but the discomfort was minimal. My pain level has been greater today and I have a few sore spots. Especially on the right temple.
So I think we need an I survived botox bumper sticker (or web banner.) It needs to be mildly cryptic so people will puzzle over what it means, like the marathon sticker. Here’s my go at making one:
After battling monthly migraines and a few back to back sinus infections, there came a point when the headache just didn’t go away. I can’t pinpoint exactly when it hit. I remember talking to my husband one day and he said “You just never seem to feel well anymore.”
It was a valid point, and a real wake up call. (I need those sometimes.)
So I started keeping a food and headache diary and made an appointment to see a neurologist here in town.
My appointment was in February 2010. The neurologist probably thought I was a head case. (Which in fact I am, it is a headache after all.)
First I described my migraine history. Then I told him how this headache seemed different. It went something like this:
I’ve had Migraines since I was twelve, but this headache seems different. It never goes away. It is always on the right side of my head, I feel like there is pressure in my right eye. I’m still sensitive to light, smells, and sound. The intensity varies from bearable to intolerable – 3 to 7 on a scale of 1 to 10.
Somehow he came away with the idea that this was just a migraine (Just is his word, there is no Just a migraine. It is a real issue and needs to be treated as such.)
He conducted a brief physical exam and glanced at my journal. Finally, he gave me a list of food triggers, said to take ibuprofen, and billed me $250.
I did learn a few things from my visit. I had no idea yogurt was a trigger for me. It stinks too; I love yogurt. I went through a period of time when I was vegetarian, and yogurt would have been a great protein source. After the appointment is also when I started doing my own headache research online.
It was another year before I sought further treatment outside of my (kind but none to helpful) physician. Once again it came at my husband’s prompting. This time I asked my physician to refer me to a neurologist affiliated with Norton Hospital. We’ve had good experiences with Norton’s.