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ana_luisa
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newbie with a question
« on: Dec 27th, 2005, 2:02pm »
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Hi my name is Ana and I'm 21 years old; I just had my first cluster headache a few days ago.  At least that's what the doctor called it.
 
I first had a fever and flu-like symptoms for about 3 days, then the next day they were gone but I woke up with the pounding in one side of the head, and all day long it kept getting worse, and lasted for 48 hours straight.  I also had a swollen feeling in both sides of my jaw, and a pain there, just near my ear, on both sides, but stronger on the side with the headache.  Then on night 2 of the headache the left side of my face started to feel numb, which is what made me go to the hospital and how I got diagnosed.  
 
I've tried to look on the internet to see if facial numbness as well as swelling of the jaw is normal with a cluster headache but the information was confusing.  I wanted to know if anyone else has experienced this?  Today is day 3 and the headache is there but slight, and the numbness and swelling are also there but slight.  My mother even though I had the mumps because of everything I described to her, minus the numbness.
 
Thanks for reading!
Ana
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Melissa
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Re: newbie with a question
« Reply #1 on: Dec 27th, 2005, 2:11pm »
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Hello Ana Luisa,
 
Please take the "cluster quiz" to the left of your screen to help you determine better if you may or may not have cluster headaches.  From what you describe, beings the pain has lasted for a full 48 hours, does not sound typical for clusters.
 
When I have a cluster headache attack, mine come on like a freight train that feels like someone has stabbed me behind the eye and temple with a fireplace poker, and rotates it around and around in there for 50 minutes straight.  Then, it leaves as quickly as it came on.  I do get a residual headache in the affected area, but it is more of a dull pain that can last for hours at a time, but it can also go away with the help of Oxygen and/or over the counter pain meds.  That is another thing, Oxygen can kill a cluster attack within 20 minutes for me also.
 
Please read all you can, and hopefully you will be able to get to the bottom of what it is you're suffering from.  Also, beings the ER "diagnosed" you (which might have been done incorrectly) with CH's, perhaps it would be a good idea to be referred to a Neurologist?
 
Take care,
Melissa
 
P.S. Are you able to lay down with your headache with some relief, or does it wake you from a sound sleep?
« Last Edit: Dec 27th, 2005, 2:12pm by Melissa » IP Logged
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Re: newbie with a question
« Reply #2 on: Dec 27th, 2005, 2:11pm »
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on Dec 27th, 2005, 2:02pm, ana_luisa wrote:
Hi my name is Ana and I'm 21 years old; I just had my first cluster headache a few days ago.  At least that's what the doctor called it.
 
I first had a fever and flu-like symptoms for about 3 days, then the next day they were gone but I woke up with the pounding in one side of the head, and all day long it kept getting worse, and lasted for 48 hours straight.  I also had a swollen feeling in both sides of my jaw, and a pain there, just near my ear, on both sides, but stronger on the side with the headache.  Then on night 2 of the headache the left side of my face started to feel numb, which is what made me go to the hospital and how I got diagnosed.  
 
I've tried to look on the internet to see if facial numbness as well as swelling of the jaw is normal with a cluster headache but the information was confusing.  I wanted to know if anyone else has experienced this?  Today is day 3 and the headache is there but slight, and the numbness and swelling are also there but slight.  My mother even though I had the mumps because of everything I described to her, minus the numbness.
 
Thanks for reading!
Ana

 
Ana, I'm no doctor, and take all advice you get on the internet for what its worth, but for what it's worth, your symptoms don't sound like Cluster Headache to me. The whole numbness, preceded by fever, swelling thing, combined with the longevity of your headache are not at all typical of cluster headache.
 
You can take the cluster quiz on the right hand side of the website and probably affirm this as well.
 
Sorry you're feeling pain, all pain sucks. But, you might need to get another opinion from a doctor (not kidding at all here).
 
Anyone want to add to my advice?
 
Scott
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ana_luisa
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Re: newbie with a question
« Reply #3 on: Dec 27th, 2005, 5:54pm »
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I don't see a cluster headache quiz on either the right or the left side of my screen??  Maybe I"ll search through the site and see if I can find what you guys are talking about...  
 
When I took some advil it did make the pain less and sort of a dull ache; lying down did help to keep it from getting worse but I still felt the sharp pain while lying down... and it woke me continuously from my sleep.
 
It's day 3 and there's still a bit of a dull ache in the area... they told me to see my family doctor in 3 days if it wasn't better.
 
I suffer from migraines regularly but this is completely different from my migraines.  I will definitely get it checked out by another doctor regardless...
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Re: newbie with a question
« Reply #4 on: Dec 27th, 2005, 6:00pm »
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There are buttons to the left.  Here is the link in case you still do not see them: http://www.clusterheadaches.com/quiz.html
 
Please take the quiz and let us know how you come out.  Waking from a sound sleep is one of the cluster traits, but we usually can't lay still during an attack.  Some, like myself, find it helpful to sit upright or to pace back and forth while rubbing the affected area.  They can get bad enough where I scream out to die also.
 
Anyway, good luck to you and I am happy to hear you will be following up!
 
I am very sorry for your pain. Sad
 
Take care,
Melissa
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Re: newbie with a question
« Reply #5 on: Dec 27th, 2005, 6:49pm »
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Ana - I see you're from Toronto.  There is an excellent headache clinic associated with Toronto Western/Toronto General Hospital University Network system.
 
Can you tell me the neuro you saw in Toronto that gave you the diagnosis of CH?
 
I have the names of several good neuros in the GTA.  They are clinicians I use regularly in my line of work and I'd be happy to find one for you if you need help.  I don't return to work until the 30th of Dec. but if you need my help, please send me a PM and I'll get back to you with names and numbers.
 
I'm west of Toronto by about 45 minutes but travel pretty regularly into the city for my job.
 
If you need help with any of this, please do let me know.  From what I'm reading so far though, it sure doesn't sound like CH but as the rest have said, any head pain should be checked out.
 
Carol
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