Headaches and MS

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Headaches and MS

Postby scoobyjude » Sun Dec 07, 2008 1:05 am

I personally have suffered from bad headaches for most of my life which I always associated with sinus problems but I do/did have a brainstem lesion.


Multiple sclerosis seen associated with headache
Thu Dec 4, 2008 2:01am IST
NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Patients with multiple sclerosis are more apt to suffer from headaches than the general population, results of a study hint.

Multiple sclerosis, or MS, is a disease in which the immune system mistakenly attacks and damages the myelin sheath that protects nerve cells. It can cause symptoms ranging from vague tingling to blindness and paralysis.

"Headache is not generally considered a symptom of MS, and studies investigating the relationship between the two conditions have produced conflicting results," Dr. Mario Zappia, of the University of Catania, and colleagues note in a report published this month.

In a "case-control" study, the researchers screened 101 MS patients and 101 controls for headaches. They found that the frequency of headache was higher in the MS patients than in the control patients.

Among the MS patients, 58 (about 57 percent) fulfilled the diagnostic criteria for headache. Most of these patients were affected by tension-type headache or migraine.

In contrast, 31 (roughly 38 percent) of the 101 controls fulfilled the diagnostic criteria for headache, mostly migraine and tension-type headache.

In an analysis adjusting for age and sex, the researchers observed a significant association between MS and headache. The likelihood of headache was more than twofold higher in the MS patients than in the control patients.

The increased risk of headache in MS patients "supports the hypothesis of a common pathway between these conditions; as suggested by other studies, the higher frequency of headache in MS subjects could be related to brainstem lesions," Zappia's team concludes.

"However, it should be noted that the role of brainstem in migraine pathogenesis is still controversial, and other types of study are needed to confirm this hypothesis."

SOURCE: Cephalalgia, November 2008.
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Postby Toyoterry » Sun Dec 07, 2008 4:36 am

From the time I was a teenager, I'm 46 now I've suffered from headaches that were diagnosed as sinus problems. Turns out, they were caused by my MS (spasiicity) I currently take Baclofen which helps except times of increased stress where they still come back.
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Postby jimmylegs » Sun Dec 07, 2008 6:05 am

magnesium is great against any kind of spasticity. i don't think i realized migraines were blood vessel spasms until cheer brought it up recently. but you could try 600mg magnesium citrate per day. there's a good powder out there that you mix with water. i find that putting it in tea with no milk makes it kind of seem lemony. but i don't know if the tea is messing with the biochem!
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No headaches here

Postby lyndacarol » Sun Dec 07, 2008 8:45 am

I am 59, received the MS diagnosis in 1992, and have never suffered from headaches. My lesions have not been located in the brain stem. That may be the reason for the lack of headaches--or not. I am not convinced that lesions cause symptoms; I think it is possible that lesions are the effects of whatever is causing MS (which most of you know I believe to be excess insulin).

I always have to be different, don't I?
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Postby DIM » Mon Dec 08, 2008 8:31 am

Just a guess Lynda, iron overload causes insulin resistance, diabetes, endothelium dysfunction and increased oxidative stress all of them involved in MS why not to blame iron malabsorption rather insulin?
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Postby MattB » Mon Dec 08, 2008 9:54 am

I no longer get headaches, or very rarely just as the general population does, but in my junior high school years I got them all the time. I went to doctors, optometrists, allergists and none of them came up with anything. After a year and a half or so of at least one bad headache a week they just stopped. :?:
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Insulin vs. iron

Postby lyndacarol » Mon Dec 08, 2008 5:42 pm

DIM--to your question,
why not to blame iron malabsorption rather insulin?
I respond: From testing, I know my insulin levels are moderately high; iron has always been normal. My symptoms seem to be explained more likely by insulin--worse after eating a diet high in carbs, pain like lye traveling through the blood vessels of my legs.
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Postby catfreak » Mon Dec 08, 2008 9:20 pm

I have been having headaches for almost 9 years. Ever since I had Mono in February of 2000. My insulin levels are perfect, I check them quite often since my Mom is a diabetic, never above 80 no matter what I eat.

Headaches were my first symptom that i can remember. No lesions on my brainstem at all. I think we are all so different in the way we have this disease.

Just my thoughts.

CF
Holly - Shine On You Crazy Diamond - Pink Floyd

9/3/09 Stanford - Dr Dake - Stent in R-J to unblock Arachnoid Cyst in Sigmoid Sinus. Stent in narrowed L-J. Balloon in narrowing where R & L Jugulars meet.
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Insulin test ing vs. glucose testing

Postby lyndacarol » Tue Dec 09, 2008 5:35 am

CF--I am sure from your comment,
My insulin levels are perfect, I check them quite often since my Mom is a diabetic, never above 80 no matter what I eat.
that you are testing your glucose level with a glucose meter.

An insulin test requires a blood draw; the blood specimen must be frozen if the testing will not be done immediately; the desirable result of the fasting serum insulin test is under 10 (my first one was 12); the upper limit for the post prandial (after eating test) extends to 27 (mine was 30).

I urge all to request a fasting serum insulin test; it costs less than $100 here (I recall it is about $80). A high insulin level is implicated in more and more conditions; most recently, I read that it is now considered a risk factor for prostate cancer (just for men, of course).
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Postby jimmylegs » Tue Dec 09, 2008 6:14 am

let's all remember that although we have been dumped in the big ms basket together, there is no reason to assume that we all have exactly the same root combinations of causes for our condition...
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Postby catfreak » Tue Dec 09, 2008 7:40 pm

LyndaCarol,

I do have fasting blood sugar testing regularly and I do understand the difference in fasting and metered testing. My Mom is diabetic as is my niece. Since we have a family history we make it a priority to keep it in check.

CF
Holly - Shine On You Crazy Diamond - Pink Floyd

9/3/09 Stanford - Dr Dake - Stent in R-J to unblock Arachnoid Cyst in Sigmoid Sinus. Stent in narrowed L-J. Balloon in narrowing where R & L Jugulars meet.
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Postby Wonderfulworld » Mon Dec 15, 2008 3:04 pm

Headaches......
wonder if they are just another outlet for neuropathic pain, or is it something else? I mean, if they did a study to say people with MS tend to have pain in their legs more, or arms more, is it any more significant than more headaches, given that we tend to get neurological pain generally?

I have migraines, pretty bad and can last for 6 days or so. That is interesting Terry that Baclofen is helping your headaches. I saw this study about it: http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/jour ... 1&SRETRY=0 . I take low dose amitriptyline for neurological pain, and it is also prescribed for migraine prophylaxis. In my case it is working but I still get mild migraines...aura and exhaustion but less migraine pain. Also saw this article about meds for migraines: http://www.aafp.org/afp/20060101/72.html and interestingly it does mention magnesium, vit B1 amongst others for prevention.
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Postby Toyoterry » Tue Dec 16, 2008 4:52 am

Amytriptiline, low dose, really helps my headaches.
Terry
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Migraine's & M.S.

Postby kimrene » Tue Dec 16, 2008 9:42 am

An interesting thread. My recent diagnosis of M.S. came as a result of trying to figure out the reason for my chronic Migraines, the reason for an MRI. This, after a CT showed no abnormalities.
Although my Neuro says that the MRI showed no reason for the Migraines, he also says that anytime something is out of balance in the brain, migraine's can become a symptom of the brain kind of in an overload state, which makes sense.
My lesions are not around my brainstem. They are all on top basically, supposedly in areas that could affect vision, memory, cognitive, mood etc...

However, my MRI report does mention excessive iron deposition at the Basal Ganglia, and I have also previously had high insulin levels and suspect it again as all the coritisone epidurals I had last year packed 30 lbs on me in 2 months, then another 10 gradually over this last year. I definately feel I am back in that high insulin state again.

You've all given me alot to think about and now I have even more research to do. I can see it may be a long time before I understand this process but it's good to know there's a place like this where I can come to and look at what others are saying.
Thanks,
Kimrenee
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Postby Grumpster » Fri Jan 02, 2009 3:34 pm

I am a little late to this thread, but ....

I have had chronic headaches for a while now. They are pretty bad, but definately worse after Rebif. I get them so bad that I can not function much. I never had them prior to MS diagnosis. I do a lot to supplement the diet with vitamins and minerals. I also have had numerous insulin bloodwork tests and mine is in the healthy / normal range. The Dr suggested some Rx for migrane, but it was something you had to take everyday and I feel like a walking chemistry experiment already so I did not start on it. I take bulk amounts of ibu for the headaches and it helps some.
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