Thursday, March 19, 2015

The Silent "u" in "HRT"

Hello again, All,

Here's the rundown of what's been going on here over the last week or so:

After more than 6 months of being given a prescription for the HRT patch, (hormone treatment for menopause--which came early for me thanks to chemo), I decided to go against my inner voice and finally give it a try.

This decision was not made lightly, nor based on the endless hot flushes nor moodiness but on consistantly high, (often double), serum uric acid levels for well over a year now.

High uric acid levels are not only a gout concern, but can lead to adverse cardiac events as well.

After reading of some research pointing to hormone therapy lowering uric acid levels, I finally bit the HRT bullet and gave it a try, in patch form, the type that's worn continuously.

Here are a couple of links to said studies for those interested: 

As some of you know, I am no stranger to headaches and migraines, so when I had a migraine early Saturday morning after putting on the first HRT patch on Friday, I considered it just another migraine bummer to deal with and took a zolmiptriptan, which took it down to tolerable and the day went on in decently veiled pain.

The following Friday, when it was time for a new patch, I was hit by another migraine within 15 hours of patch application--just like the week before but much harsher pain.

That second migraine did not respond to one dose of the triptan and the pain quickly escalated, leaving me wretching and soon balled up on the couch shivering and squirming and groaning under the unbelievable mounting pain.

It was the most severe, incredible migraine I had ever had in my life.  And that's really sayin' suMm.  It was like the usual vice from hell on the skull, but with an added high-E guitar string being pierced into all areas of the brain--the unfathomable pain moved quickly and fiercely and I was so scared.

When immense pain like that happens, one cannot help but think it's due to something in there rupturing/exploding--something deadly.

Enough time passed for me to take a 2nd dose of the migraine med (directions say to wait 2 (torturous) hours between doses), and that finally took the pain down significantly, leaving me a wracked, limp noodle for the rest of the day.

That HRT patch was of course removed during that mega-migraine episode and I've not used them since.

So that was Saturday.

Then on early Sunday morning, I woke with another migraine--which thankfully responded to only one dose of the triptan and that day was spent very low key as I was so very drained, physically and mentally.

Forward to Monday and ANOTHER migraine came, in the wee morning hours again and thankfully, that one responded (enough), to another zolmitriptan.

I was beginning to note some cognitive issues, (mistyping words, stammering over words I couldn't find, light headed-ness and weaker than usual with light nausea too, which I shared all of this with the medical team.

I was resting post-migraine on the couch Monday morning when my Nephrologist called and he told me to go to the ER immediately.

For those who don't know, this rare form of Vasculitis I have, MPA, likes to attack not only kidneys and lungs, but head tissues and sometimes even the brain.

Considering I already have damage in my R eye socket, sinuses and nostrils, I proceeded to pack up for a possible hospital stay and off I went, scared and already feeling the trembling effects of my sub-functional adrenal glands failing to help me deal with this new stress.  

Ten+ hours in the ER included a physical exam/blood draws, an EKG, CT scan and eventually, a brain MRI, (no contrast dye), all so thankfully NORMAL.

Due to these last few strange days, I will be spending the next month or so getting more tests done and then seeing a neurologist.  My neck will Dopplered and ultrasounded and my heart will be checked out further, (though I don't know why, if the physical exam and the EKG were normal).

I'm glad to have this chronically owy neck of mine looked into finally as my headaches and migraines usually stem from that area.

I'm hoping it's all connected to disc degeneration between C3 & C7 and/or a reverse-angle in the vertebrae  due to an "8 seconds" type of horse accident back in '95 when I was thrown and landed hard on the back of my neck.  Being in Japan at the time with no health ins., (ahhh the folly of youth), I never had it looked at, only x-rayed some years ago when the migraines were increasing again, which showed the degeneration and mal-angle.

So yes, let this be a painful lesson to any women out there who usually have migraines and are thinking about HRT/HuRT.  For me at least, it proved to be a helluva pain catalyst.  And it also caused uterus and cervix pain.

But it worked great on the hot flushes!  *eyeball roll*

RE: the high uric acid levels, since reading of the power of cherries to lower uric acid, I'm now eating about 30/day, in hopes that they'll do some kind of trick.

Happy to report that since yesterday afternoon-ish, my chi levels have increased and the headpain has decreased.  Guess those hormones are almost all rinsed out.

Now, time for some yoga-ish yoinging about on the mat methinks.

Bon, healthy vibes, Everyone,


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