Friday, April 11, 2008

What's Up, Doc?

I had an appointment with the neurologist yesterday. I was excited, thinking through my history and planning what to say as I showered and blew my hair dry, hoping he'd have some ideas. Wondering if he'd take a CT scan. Could he prescribe massages? (Hoping). Would he want me to be a part of some migraine study, since they were so weird, and so unpredictable and so changeable? Was my head going to explode, or would he have a miracle cure?

I got to the appointment, went through my history sketchily, thinking he'd ask for copies of all my medical records. I listed the drugs I'd tried, the ways the migraines had changed over the 13 years I've had them, the lengths I'd gone to to stop them.

"Well, Ronica, you're a classic case."

What? Huh? When? Who?

Wait a minute. I've been going to doctors for these for years, and now I find out I'm a classic case???

Turns out, I have a chronic case of low seratonin. It can cause migraines, fibromyalgia (which my MIL has), and depression (which is common in my family.) When I was pregnant, it was high, and now that I'm 10 months out, it's dropping again. Thus, my headaches.

He prescribed higher doses of Imitrex and injections, and said I could go back on the amytriptylin if they got really bad again, so I headed happily to Target to get the new prescriptions filled, smiling as I drove down the street with the windows wide open and singing along with the CD.

My problem is solved! I know why! And now I know at least partly why my mom struggled as she did, and why other members of my family have struggled with depression and migraines. We have low seratonin! We're not freaks, it's just a medical thing!!! YAY!

I dropped off the scrips and toodled around the store, picking up the things I'd forgotten at the grocery store the day before and grabbing a few extras that of course we had to have. I went back to pick them up and check out before stopping at the Redbox to drop off our free rental of Sweeney Todd.

"Um, Mrs. B, do you know how much these scrips cost?" the pharmacist asked.

"I know they're pricey, but not exactly, no." I said.

"This one's 150 dollars with your insurance. This one's 97 dollars. I thought I'd let you know first. We get migraines, too," she gestured to another pharmacist assistant, who nodded and began shaking her head at the price, "and I don't know if you...uh... well..."

"Um, can I just not take them today?"

"Sure! No problem!" she smiled. "We'll keep them on file for when you need them."

I sighed with relief, and then headed toward the checkout, making one stop.

In the seratonin isle.

Thank God for chocolate.


Michele said...

Mrs. B - I'm a long time reader who also has had my fair share of the dreaded migraines. I had great success with Imitrex as well, but it is crazy expensive. I can't tell you how many pills I stupidly let expire because I was saving them for "a really bad headache," one that was "Imitrex worthy." Anyway, I registered on their site for the migraine care program:
They send me coupons quarterly - they're usually $25 off a prescription. You might want to try that - it might help a little!

La Rêveuse said...

Thank you! I'm going there right now!!!

Mama Bear said...

low seratonin... things are beginning to make more sense here at my house as well. Thanks for the info!

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