Ice for clusters

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Posted by Michel L ( on April 13, 2001 at 10:58:30:

In Reply to: Clusters on ice?... posted by Dan on April 12, 2001 at 23:44:49:

Ice is my main tool in relieving a CH attack. I used to use a hot magic bag (those things you heat up in the microwave) but found that in my case ice was way more effective. I find the heat is comforting but does nothing to lower the pain.
While I have the ice pack on my neck and rub another one around the head, I try to keep my head tilted forward and also breathe deeply and regularly. I noticed that my tendency was to breathe very shallowly during and attack; it's true that it is hard to breathe deeply through the nostrils while you have a burning feeling in the affected sinus.
When lucky, this stops my attack in less that 10 minutes. If the pain is to intense upon starting my icing, I will first take an imitrex pill.
The problem I found with stopping an attack without medication is that the next one will come I may be up every 2 or 3 hours during the night. I usually reserve my imitrex intake for the latest one (around 5 a.m.) so that I have a 6 to 8 hours iwndow of peace during my work hours.
Coming back from work with a heavy shadow and hot feeling, I will fill the bathroom sink with cold water; at this time of yera with the melting snow, the inground pipes become very cold and the water in the lower 40 degrees. I plunge my head up to my ears in the very cold water for about 15 seconds, breathe again deeply and re-plunge my head in the water. This will always bring me back from my shadow and give me time for a peacefull supper. I'll get my next attack not long after supper.
I also noticed that with the ice, the pain free time is more pain free, what I mean is that there is less residual pain and in my case, no more scalp pain.
This cycle I am having now is abnormal for me, the frequency of the attack is too high but the level of pain is generally lower for each attack.

Best of luck with your ice packs.

Michel L
Quebec City

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