Location: Cape Cod, MA
Years with Migraines: 56
Occupation: Retired (middle school and high school math teacher)
How long have you had migraines?
I’ve had migraines since my senior year in high school. I was 18 and I would come home from school on Monday afternoon with a splitting headache and the next day I’d get up early and do the homework that I had to do. They always seemed to be on Monday. They worsened a little in college. Everyone said when I had kids they would go away and they didn’t. Then I noticed they were more hormonal in nature but after menopause I still had migraines. Ten years after menopause I ended up with ovarian cyst, which ended up being ovarian cancer, and everyone thought that was the cause of the migraines but that wasn’t it.
When do you usually get migraines?
My strongest trigger is odor, so if someone is smoking nearby I’ll usually get a migraine. Also, cleaning products; I have to really limit myself either not being here when my husband uses glass cleaner or choosing them more carefully. Obviously the hormonal factors aren’t there anymore but I do keep a fairly accurate record of what’s going on and when I need to take medications. About several years ago I started seeing a neurologist and I learned a lot from him.
What have you tried pre-Cefaly?
Lots and lots of medications and none of them worked. I tried neurotoxin injections but that made things worse.
What does your migraine feel like?
One recurring image that I have is that it feels like a melon baller is scooping out the material in my (usually left) eye.
How did you hear about Cefaly?
My husband and I saw it on the news one night.
What’s your Cefaly experience like?
About a year into using it I realized it wasn’t making them go away but it was really helping. I’ve been using it now for 2.5 years. I just bought the DUAL, I like the idea of the 1-hour treatment. It gives me enough relief where I’m really happy using it. My migraines are less frequent. There are still a couple migraines a month that are really intense (if I wake up with something already in progress I have a harder time getting control of it). The frequency was less and the other medications was less. Now I’m trying to wean myself off of some of the preventive medications. One of the medications is an anti-seizure drug but I’m on a very high dosage of it so I’ve been trying to reduce that. I’m hoping that long term it’s going to get even better.
What made you want to share your story?
I have 3 daughters and they’re in their 40s now. My mother suffered from migraines and my daughters do too and I want to see something in the future that will take away from the debilitating effects these headaches have had on me and have had on them. I want to know about what’s coming out and what’s out there for me. I want to be able to impart what I’ve learned on other people.
Want to share your story too? We’d love to hear from you! Please send an email to m DOT coder AT cefaly DOT us. Please include your name, contact information, and let us know where you’re located so we can set up a good time to talk.
If you’re wondering if Cefaly is right for you, click here for more information and, of course, check with your doctor.