“Elliot” is actually the doctor’s surname, but I can’t help but privately think, “Elliot Stabler”.
-He is looking at this solely from the premise of my headaches being familial migraines (thanks, Grandpa Marcel…)
-since the hydrocephalus and shunt have been conclusively ruled out via ICP monitoring and CT scans
-Since many (7-8) migraine prophylactics we’ve tried have not worked, there are other meds we can try [this was refreshing to hear. I was expecting something on the order of, “OK, you’re screwed and we can’t help you. And by the way, you’re taking too many medications.”]
-However, he also wants me to see the next level up (Tier 3) neurologist, Zermansky, and will set up an appointment to see him next
-I have severe pain-induced depression, so the choice of med kills two birds with one stone
Med(s) I’ll be trying next:
Venlafaxine (Effexor) – an antidepressant that has shown some effectiveness in migraine prevention. We toddled on foot over to my GP, who is right next door, and got her to prescribe it today.
He also suggested Botox injections (in head trigger points?), which he is not able to prescribe himself, but will mention to Zermansky about. Obviously this isn’t a first-line treatment – since over 4 other migraine prophylaxis medications have failed, I’m a candidate for something like this.
They could reduce the frequency of my headaches by 50% – which at this point would be extremely nice.
My goal was not to leave this appointment empty-handed, and it worked – because I told him straight up, “I’m not leaving this office without some kind of concrete plan in place”, and he seemed to appreciate that.