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Old 09-05-2008, 06:11 AM   #1
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Can taking pain meds cause brain anuresum?

After my nephew had a brain anuresum I've just been wondering what some of the causes could be. I know they say there is really no known cause for having one but I was just wondering if taking pain meds over a long time could trigger one? I know that any replies are just replies and will not be taken as medical advice.

Thanks,
Annie

 
Old 09-05-2008, 08:30 AM   #2
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Re: Can taking pain meds cause brain anuresum?

tandy,hi this is marcia,i answered your other post like a week ago? sorry i hadn't had the time to get back to it yet. i am just wondering if this nephew has a past history of drug abuse or something since you seem very much overly concerned about the possibility of an addiction developing with him being on pain meds? despite being told what you were here by others and myself that the overall risks of actual addiction are really very low in anyone who is truely suffering the type of pain he is, you still don;t seem convinced so thats whay i am asking this question.

please don't take any offense to what i just asked,it would simply really be helpful to know that for us to help you in the very best ways. i myself am a former active addict who is on some pretty strong pain meds becasue of very very severe chronic pain. i am not proud of that but right now am what i consider to be a totally completely inactive addict. luckily for me when the real true need for narcotics happened i had had alot of clean time in place. i have managed to be totally and completley compliant with all my meds despite my past history. my PM is a very crucial part of my compliance and i could not have done this without their monitoring and direction that i just need right now. so if this is indeed the case with your nephew,we really do need to know. there is more than just me on this board who is actually in the very same situation as me. just really needed to ask that.

i would seriously doubt that any pain meds would be responsible(was he on pain meds before the aneurysm was found?) for a brain aneurysm just given what creates them. tho narcotics can increase cranial pressure,but you would seriously have to speak to a neurologsit about that part. it would not seem 'likely"? but anything is possible if he was using alot of pain meds BEFORE the aneurysm actually developed. small chance there maybe but not the really strongest link. what causes the increased cranial pressure is actually within the CSF(cerebral spinal fluid) and not within the arteries them selves.when my aneurysm was found,my neurosurgeon never said one word connecting my use of oxycontin to my aneurysm at all,and i was still allowed to stay on them before my aneurysm was coiled too,so i am guessing that the increase in cranial pressure would not actually affect the arteries to any huge degree. no one said one word,not even my neuroradiologist who did my aneurysm coling.

so is aneurysm what they have now actually confirmed this is or was? what is his current status with that? a burst aneurysm generally will heavily bleed not just appear with a small amount of blood,are they absolutely certain this was indeed even an aneurysm and not an actual veinous fed type of vascular malformation? it would just better explain the smaller amout of blood and not a huge bleed like most aneurysms actually have the tendency to do when they rupture ya know? veinous fed lesions however would simply kind of "ooze" blood,which kind of sounds like what you actually explained in the other post?

honestly,given just what i know the pain levels can be with aneurysm,let alone one that has appeared to have actually ruptured(am i right there?) i personally feel that a stronger med would probably be much more helpful than plain old vicodin with his level of pain. he is really on the lower end of the hydrocodone dosing here with only 5/500.

aneurysms actually form in the brain when there is an actual "weakening" within the arterial wall of one of the arteries up there. it will sort of balloon out and create a "pocket' or bulge within that wall that can easily rupture if too much pressure(blood pressure really counts here)is suddenly running thru that artery or it just gets too big and that wall thins out too much. it would not take much depending upon the actual size of the aneurysm to have it burst. the most common reason for them to really create themselves is high blood pressure that has not been well controlled. in my case tho,my BPs are actually 'under' the normal, i am what is called HYPO tensive and not HYPER tensive, but i have a kidney/liver disease that for some reason makes me at higher risk for all kinds of vascular malformations to develop because i am 'missing' some sort of enzyme or protien that actually makes up the walls of all my vessels. i just was born with naturally weaker blood vessels than the norm.

there are many different types of actual vascular malformations that are possible to have both in the brain and in other organs too. one is called a cavernous hemangioma. this i was actually born with right inside of my spinal cord. these can also form within the brain too. i am really wondering,given the fact that this was not an actul heavy bleed and the fact that cavernous hemangiomas will NOT show up(light up?) on any type of angiogram or MRA,simply becasue they are not arterially fed,they are veinous,that this could be what your nephew actually had/has,and not an actual "aneurysm per se, you know what i mean? only arteries show up on angios and MRAs, but an MRI(with contrast is always better) would possibly show a veinous fed lesion that just would not be there when they only look at the arteries. the veinous fed vascular malformation just really would make much more sense given what you have stated here as not showing up,but yet he did have a bleed, ya know? just some info for you. i had to research ALOT on vascular malforamtions when my cavernous hemangioma was just found upon a simple MRI just to really find out what i was really dealing with. then the aneurysm popped in later in 05 so i had to research those too. i know way too much about this stuff than anyone should have to.

what are the plans here for your nephew at this point and what is the brain status like? how much of his pain is really being controlled with only the vicodin to use with some,at times,pretty over the top type of pain i am sure he is actually still dealing with? any info you could provide for us would help us better help you here ya know? also knowing what the plan is for his 'malformation' would help too. sorry i did not get back to you much sooner than this,i have been dealing with my own situation way too much right now too. but please let me know what i asked,K? take care hon,marcia
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3-22-01,herniated C-6-7
11-20-01,placement of hardware for failed fusion
9-22-03,removal of cavernous hemangioma that was inside spinal cord. Neuro damage to L hand L leg and R leg.

Last edited by feelbad; 09-05-2008 at 08:35 AM.

 
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Old 09-05-2008, 11:40 AM   #3
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Re: Can taking pain meds cause brain anuresum?

Annie...I'm going to have to agree with Marcia. I know you're just a loving, concerned aunt, but it seems as if there has been something his past that causes you to worry about pain med abuse/addiction. Please know you're safe here from judgement. We're here for you!

 
Old 09-05-2008, 12:18 PM   #4
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Re: Can taking pain meds cause brain anuresum?

I am no medical expert, but I do know that untreated or undertreated pain, whether it is acute or chronic can cause elevated blood pressure and increased pulse rates. Common sense would indicate that the increased blood pressure and pulse rate would be much more dangerous to a person with the potential for an anuresum than using a pain medication as prescribed. Just as a caution, some anti-inflammatory medications like ibuprofen or naproxen can raise blood pressure and increase bleeding. These are generally a no-no after surgery for at least a short period.

 
Old 09-05-2008, 04:01 PM   #5
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Re: Can taking pain meds cause brain anuresum?

Hey everyone, and Marcia, what a great post!
First let me say that my nephew has never been one to take drugs, smoke or drink. I've had dealings with drug addiction in our family and I guess we are a little worried. Right now we are just thankful he has pain meds to take!
They put him on Norco 10/325 today. He is having so much pain. He has to use a walker to get to the bathroom and it's just breaking our hearts to see him in this shape. He has always been such a healthy, strong guy. His head, back and legs are hurting him something awful. The doctor says he most likely will need pt to help in his recovery.
Now let me tell you why I asked the question I did, "Can taking pain meds cause brain aneurysm?" I asked that question for me. Someone told me that taking pain meds can be a factor in having a brain aneurysm and I've been taking them for over two years. I've never abused my meds but I do take them on a regular basics as prescribed. I don't know much about aneurysms and what causes them, even though I've been reading everything I can on the net, so when I heard this it scared me a little. I even considered stopping my meds altogether and I am in so much pain that it would be something I would really hate to do but after reading y'alls posts, I feel like I understand things a little more. Thank you all for being so sweet and trying to answer my questions.
Annie

 
Old 09-05-2008, 04:33 PM   #6
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Re: Can taking pain meds cause brain anuresum?

Hi Annie,

I think I might can answer something. First, it's anti-inflammatory drugs (aspirin, Advil, Naproxen) that causes your blood to thin out. The more you take and the longer you take it, the thinner your blood gets. If it's too thin, it can't be contained in the blood vessels and in turn you can massively bleed out, but this isn't an aneruysm, it would be a hemmoraghic stroke. You know there are 2 different kinds of strokes.....hemmoraghic (where you bleed out) and an embolism stroke (meaning there is a blockage and blood and oxygen cannot pass by the blockage in the vessels, thus causing the stroke). They both can be devastating.

My Nanny had a embolic stroke 6 months before she had a fatal hemmoraghic stroke. The reason for the second stroke was due to her being on prescription blood thinners to help prevent another embolic stroke. Does all of this make sense?

Tylenol, does not thin your blood, so that's ok. What pain meds are you taking, may I ask? Like feelbad (Marcia) said, some people are just more prone to aneruysms, (which is a bulging of the blood vessels that can eventually "pop") but I've never heard of pain meds causing one. Just blood thinning drugs causing the "bleed out" hemmoraghic strokes. I hope I didn't confuse you. Bye for now.

Shay

 
Old 09-05-2008, 04:56 PM   #7
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Re: Can taking pain meds cause brain anuresum?

tandycipps,

What pain meds you are taking?

I have not read other posts from you, but I can tell you that opioids are some of the safest drugs available. They cause no organ damage at all. Yes, taken long term dependence will result. This is NOT addiction, but simply the body's natural reaction to the meds. Other meds cause dependence as well, and must be reduced slowly if stopped of patients suffer negative consequences.

But there are other pain meds that can affect our bodies negatively. The anti-inflammatory meds like ibuprofen can cause bleeding and such. They can also affect the heart. The cox2 inhibitors can cause the same.

So, side effects depend on which class of pain meds one is taking. I realize the risk of bleeding does not imply that aneurisms can be caused, but it comes as close as I can think of.

steve

 
Old 09-06-2008, 08:12 AM   #8
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Re: Can taking pain meds cause brain anuresum?

steve is very right tandy in what he just stated. despite being at very high risk myself just given the blood vessel thing and already having two different types of vascular malformations i am still on oxycontin and have NEVER ever been told that this is any sort of problem with relation to my aneurysm or any raised risk in even getting one. i do hope that helps you out some to at least feel totally safe in what youi are taking. like steve asked,if you could tell us what it is you are actually on it would help us to help you in the very best way.

like i mentioned in the other post,the arteries themselves simply don;t increase in any pressure 'just" from pain meds,its the surrounding CSF that 'can' in some cases increase in cranial pressure which has no real affect upon the inner arterial walls. i do hope i explained how aneurysms actually form in that other post well enough. if you have any other questions about that just let me know.

i am just really really curious as to what your nephews docs actually came up with as a final impressdion of his Dx as to what actually burst or bled inside his brain? this just,given that this did not actually show up on any arterial testing,that this may have been what i mentioned,a veinous fed lesion of some kind and not actually arterial. if you can find out the actual location inside the brain as to just exactly where this bleed came from it would really help in telling whether this was arterial(aneurysm) or a veinous fed lesion(possible cavernous or just hemangioma). for example,my particular aneurysm was in and still is in only coiled now, the left inferior cerebellar artery in my brain. you know what i am asking here? it should be stated somewhere in some of the test results. if your family has not yet gotten ALL of his medical records along with every single test result,they really do need to since this IS a big part of his medical history that will just have to be followed up on and monitored for quite some time. i still have to have a yearly angio or MRA to check for anything "new" that may pop in. but you can learn a heck of alot more just reading thru test results and docs impressions while he was actually in the hospital being treated for this than in any other possible place,trust me on that. you simply do not get details when docs,espescially specialists are giving out the info,that i do know way too well. it wasn't til i just simply started gathering my own copies of all my specialists records on me i see and every single thing from every single surgery and all test results that i really 'felt' well informed,ya know? he just really NEEDS to know what this actually was since it can create a higher risk for his future if this was somehow an actual aneurysm of some kind. i just really highly doubt that myself just knowing that aneurysm WILL show up on both MRA and espescially angiogram. there is a chance,as in my case,that he was actually born with this malformation inside his brain and just never actually knew it. i did not find out where my "birthmark" actually was til a simple MRI was done on my c spine that showed it in my cord. i was already 40 years old by then.

just what does he have to rehab at this point? i had to go thru the rehab thing after my cavernoma removal damaged my cord to the point it knocked out my left leg completely and did major damage to my left hand with regards to the fine motor muscles. i lost 8 of them that have never come back. BUT,honestly,a good rehab fcility can really do amazing things as far as rehabbing your nephew and getting his muscle tone and strength back. i was actually able to walk out,on my own power,out of the doors of that rehab facility that i was wheeled into only three weeks prior. amazing when i think that i just had no structure or anything solid under me when i tried to stand up and put full weight on my left leg at one time 4 days post op. the leg just crumbled under me then. but i am walking now with not too many issues. they CAN get him back to as normal as humanely possible in a good rehab facility,believe me tandy. you get out of rehab in just what you actually put into it,ya know?

as far as you actually developing aneurysm 'just' from the use of pain meds tandy,really is not a factor here. it is blood pressure that plays a much bigger part in the formation of aneurysm,really. or any inhereted type of problem like i have becasue of that 'missing thing that makes up my vessel walls. i really do think,without any other factors here,pain meds are NOT going to be the problem,K? i do hope that at least eases your mind about YOUR risks. if you need anything from me or us,just holler,K? good luck to your nephew,and please do keep us posted on what the real skinny is on what this was actually found to be. something just doesn't sound right with aneurysm given what you stated about the testing. marcia
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3-22-01,herniated C-6-7
11-20-01,placement of hardware for failed fusion
9-22-03,removal of cavernous hemangioma that was inside spinal cord. Neuro damage to L hand L leg and R leg.

 
Old 09-06-2008, 11:05 AM   #9
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Re: Can taking pain meds cause brain anuresum?

Hey Guys,
Ok, I'm taking lortab 10/500 4xday for neck pain and fiornial w/o cod. 2xday for headaches. I have two bad disks in my neck and have bad headaches almost everyday. I have been going to my pm doc 3 years this oct. I've had injections twice and went through a sleep center to see if I have sleep apnea (which they found out I do) and that might be a factor in the headaches. I have tried to use the sleep mask
but one of the straps feels tight across my neck and I just can't stand that pressure so I haven't been using it much lately. Actually using the mask (when I could) I loved it! So I'm kind of between a rock and a hard place.
What worries me after reading your posts is sometimes I can't get relief from the headaches even with the meds so I take Excedrin migraine. The doc said DO NOT take it, but when the headaches get that bad what do I do then? Tylenol doesn't help one bit, it's like taking baby aspirins. I've had headaches all my life so I guess my system is just used to stuff. What you said about the blood thinning really scared me so now I'm not going to take the excedrin but what should I get otc that will be ok? Any suggestions? The doc is wanting me to see a neurologist so I will soon and go from there.
Anyway I didn't mean to get off on my problems.
Ok, my nephew's doc says he will be having to take several more tests before he comes back in to see him. I'm not sure what those tests are. I do know he hasn't had the coiling and the other one you mentioned, Marcia. The rehab is supposed to help him I guess with his legs and back. Remember I mentioned he had to use a walker just to go to the bathroom? We have been given so much medical news about him that I have gotten so confused about the names of things. I know he did have an aneurysm but they couldn't do anything till some of the blood was absorbed back into his system cause they couldn't see or something like that. I do know that he has excellent doctors. I hope this helps you understand a little more of what is going on. You all just seem so knowledgeable about all this and I feel like a dummy trying to explain it all to you.
Annie

 
Old 09-06-2008, 01:16 PM   #10
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Re: Can taking pain meds cause brain anuresum?

Annie, please, please, NEVER feel like you are a "dummy", ok?? It's only because all of us have had experience with things and that's how we became "knowledgeable", ya know?

I, too, learned a great deal of info after I started collecting my medical and surgical notebook over the past 28 years. I'm 37 now and started having kidney problems and surgeries since I was 9 years old (over 70+ surgeries, including the removal of my left kidney, and now right kidney dysfunction/borderline failure). My surgical notebook alone is over 5" thick, no joke, and that's only with about 75% of my records. Some are just too old to be found.

Ok...sorry, didn't mean to ramble. As far as any other OTC meds for your headaches, other than Tylenol, well, I really don't know of any that don't fall into the NSAID (non-steriod anti-infammatory drugs). This is something you really need to speak to your neurologist about. I'm sorry I couldn't have been any more help to you, in that regard.

Marcia is completely right!! Get those medical records...every single one. Everything from radiology reports, hospital records, progress notes from his docs, anything you can get your hands on. It's really valuable info. I hope someone else can help you with the OTC meds. I will be praying for your nephew, and you, that you all are not suffering too much and a quick rehab for you nephew. Bye for now.

Shay

 
Old 09-07-2008, 06:51 PM   #11
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Re: Can taking pain meds cause brain anuresum?

Thanks Shay,
I really appreciate the help.
Annie

 
Old 09-08-2008, 03:58 AM   #12
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Re: Can taking pain meds cause brain anuresum?

Annie,

I don't know of any OTC meds other than tylenol either. Have you ever tried massage for your headaches? I sometimes get horrible headaches that start in my neck (usually from stress) that last for days. The last one I'd had all weekend and all day Monday and Tuesday. I had an appt with the MT on Tuesday afternoon and that really helped, the headache pretty much went away after that. If your's are caused by other than muscle tension this might not work, but the massage (this is medical massage with a liscenced massage therapist, not a spa massage) is relaxing and could take stress out of the muscles from pain and help that way. Also, there are alot of different types of headgear out there for C-PAP's. If you do a basic search you should be able to find some, a different type might work better for you.

Tigg.

 
Old 09-08-2008, 08:37 AM   #13
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Re: Can taking pain meds cause brain anuresum?

annie,have you yourself ever actually had at least an MRI run on your brain just to make certain everything is just 'normal" in there? i am only asking since it does appear that this has been(the head pain) a very long chronic type of issue for you. there could be some reason,such as some level of congenital issue in there that just sets the stage for you to be more prone to headaches,you know what i mean? some types of just strange vascular configurations that you were simply born with and the way your vessels were arranged while in utero could also be responsible for certain types of headaches to occur,you know what i mean? is this nephew with the aneurysm actually blood related to you?

your spine issues too could be exacerbating the headache stuff as well,i know my c spine problems keep triggering really ugly base of my skull headaches. i use fioricet vs fiorinal like you do. just an FYI for you here about the fiorinal? for some insane reason,the codiene in that stuff actually appeared to make my head pain worse,not better. thats why i take the fioricet. it has the same exact properties as the fiorinal minus the codiene. the barbiturate that is in both meds is what really helps with the headache,vs the narcotic codiene.you could give that a try and see how it works for you. just a thought.

just a couple of things about your nephews situation here. the simple fact that he IS actually able to still walk,even with a walker,is HUGE annie,really huge. he will just have to regroup the muscle tone and stability thru therepy and not have to start right at the beginning by strengthening his legs to just be able to even stand up like i did. thats a biggie,believe me. i am wondering also just how well his pain is being controlled with only vicodin to use for what can be some really serious type pain from what occured in his brain(he is also being limited as to how much he can actually take by the amount of tylenol in that vicodin too)? does he even appear to be comfortable when he takes it or still having alot of uncontrolled type pain? if this stuff simply is not strong enough for him or is just not controlling pain at all,his docs need to know this so they can try something else. he should NOT have to suffer with what i know can be some pretty awful pain given what took place up there. there just ARE much more effective types of meds he could be taking til that blood gets absorbed and they can "do" whatever they are planning to actually "do" with this vessel. i still am rather confused about that dx too. if you can get your hands on at least the angio report and post it here or an MRI or MRA report,i really would appreciate it. something just doesn;t "sound' right with this for some reason to me. its just that arteries generally will not just stop bleeding on their own without some type of actual intervention just becasue of that very high pressure that is within them,you know what i mean? thats the confusing part to me anyways. any arterial bleed,espescially within the brain,is just a really big deal ya know? knowing just what artery this was in would really possibly explain it much more clearly. anything that is within whats called the 'circle of willis" or COW for short,is always a traumatic bleed vs in some lower pressure areas. the actual vessel involved would just be very helpful to know,and may explain things much better.

he just really DOES NEED all of those medical records and test results from the hospital. if god forbid,something should ever happen to him like this again or some other medical issue comes up in the future,having these records all contained in some type of file that he can take with him to whatever hospital he is going to(or even if he is out of town he needs to carry these records with him too in his suitcase)will save a heck of alot of time and hassle and also gives the ER docs a good baseline medical history to start from. its just really important,believe me.

i would seriously find out just how bad and how well managed your nephews pain actually is. if he is contiuing to suffer here,something NEEDS to be changed by his docs to just better manage his pain while he is IN pain. there are just so many better choices,and ones that he could use without having to worry about the tylenol limitations. it gives the ability to just medicate round the clock if needed since the tylenol would not be an issue at all,ya know? he should NOT have to be suffering,period. even going up to like the percocet 10/325 would be a huge step up without as much tylenol,and then there is dilaudid,depending upon just how severe his pain is. the dilaudid was the ONLY med that helped with my post coiling headaches.they got pretty ugly there for about one month and then slowly went away. just ask him about his pain and see what may eed to change. please keep us posted annie. marcia
__________________
3-22-01,herniated C-6-7
11-20-01,placement of hardware for failed fusion
9-22-03,removal of cavernous hemangioma that was inside spinal cord. Neuro damage to L hand L leg and R leg.

 
Old 09-08-2008, 07:07 PM   #14
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Re: Can taking pain meds cause brain anuresum?

Hi Marcia,
He is taking two norco 10/325 every four hours for the pain. He says it does help with the pain so much till it wears off. Yes, he is a blood kin, he is my sister's son. You know I hate to even mention having a headach with how he is feeling. Jeff is one of the sweetest people I know and it just kills me to see him in this shape. What you said about him being able to walk is very encouraging. He knows it's going to be a slow recovery.

Last edited by Mod08; 09-09-2008 at 05:41 PM. Reason: No need to copy quote

 
Old 09-09-2008, 06:29 AM   #15
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Re: Can taking pain meds cause brain anuresum?

just given that he is blood related and the headache situation you have going on,it really wouldn't hurt at this point for YOU to just go get a contrasted MRI at the very least. there is always the possibility that whatever created HIS predisposistion for this vascular malformation to develop could be a dominant type of thing you may have inhereted too ya know what i mean? this is how certain congenital malformations are simply passed on. given your head pain history,it wouldn;t hurt to just rule out other possible reasons for them. in this situation it is really better to be safe than sorry. there are a few different things that neurointerventional radiologists can do that are simply amazing considering they never actually even make a cut into the brain. everything is actually done thru that femoral artery in the groin and snaked on up to the brain. really amazing stuff,believe me. tho your headaches could be stemming from any number of actual triggers,given what just occured in your blood related nephew and what you have been experiencing,it would just be a really good idea for you at this point. the key to minimizing any real risks or danger when dealing with any types of vascular malformations is the earlier they get Dxed,the better the outcome and the less the risks are to the patient.

are you currently seeing a neurologist for your headache treatment or just your primary? have they ever actually done ANY type of scan on your brain just to see if there is not a real actual reason lurking there for the headaches? just one contrasted MRI would really let you know alot about what may or may not be an actual headache trigger. it could be a simple vessel malformation that kind of messes with the blood flow velocity or something else too. our brains are just VERY sensitive to any constriction,dilation or velocity changes which can create all kinds of head pain. for instance,i do know that migrane is started by a trigger that just first constricts then overdilates a vessel. i have suffered with migrane like the second i hit puberty when i was 13 years old. have had them ever since.

i just think at this point,if you have espescially never actually had any type of real brain scan done,now would be the time to just get that contrasted MRI. you want to see as many of the vessels as possible,the contrast really helps with that. believe me, i am not trying to freak you out here annie,just really inform you on what can occur with certain types of vascular malformations that can in some cases,be an autosominal dominant type of thing that just can be passed on to other family members. do you recall ANYONE else in your side of the family having ANY types of brain bleeds or problems at all? just wondering.

i do hope everything is fine with your brain annie(and probably is) and these are just something that created themselves from even possible c spine problems you currently have, but things should just be ruled out at some point too ya know? please keep us posted on you and your nephew. if you do get those records,any infoyou could provide about the specific area where that bleed took place would help alot too. hang in there hon. Marcia
__________________
3-22-01,herniated C-6-7
11-20-01,placement of hardware for failed fusion
9-22-03,removal of cavernous hemangioma that was inside spinal cord. Neuro damage to L hand L leg and R leg.

 
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