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04/21/2009 02:53 AM

thyroid

kolle
kollePosts: 148
Member

Hi all,

I feel a bit desperate at the moment. I´ve had this headache for years and there are times in which I just have to surf the net, buy books focusing on the therapy of headache and try to figure out what to do. Then I feel I just have to accept it is there and enjoy my life as good as possible and stop throwing all my energy into this very sad and highly frustrating subject.

Now I´m back to the fight Wink I read about the possible coincidence of hypothyroidism and chronic daily headache a long time ago. But I always thought my slightly elevated tsh could not be the cause of this terrible headache. Plus my docs were not concerned at all. Then I read about it again in "Advanced Therapy of headache" by Purdy et al. That was in 2006. So I decided to have it addressed. An endo started me on thyroid hormones, but to no avail, so I stopped taking them eventually.

Now I wonder if maybe I gave up too early (if I remember correctly it was after a month) or didn´t go high enough? Didn´t I say I was desperate? I´d rather believe in anything than this pain can´t be treated at all.

Has anyone here been treated for thyroid issues and has their headache improved?

PS: If anybody is interested in the book, it is a collection of case studies of headache patients and discusses each diagnosis and treatment. I can´t copy the whole chapter on ndph here, because of copyright issues. But it focuses on the link between ndph and hypothyrodism:

"Until recently, hypothyroidism was not linked to

NDPHA. Previous reports linked hypothyroidism with

migraine and other refractory headaches, but not with

the new onset of a CDHA. Moreau and colleagues

showed that 30% of patients with hypothyroidism

reported headaches, improving after thyroid hormone

replacement.His population target was hypothyroidism

subjects, not headache sufferers. Spierings reported the case of a 51-year-old woman with daily attacks of

migraine with visual aura caused by an arteriovenous

malformation, of which almost full obliteration resulted in a decrease in frequency of the aura and in intensity of the headache. Subsequent treatment of borderline hypothyroidism with levothyroxine brought about a dramatic improvement in frequency of both the aura and the headache.

We recently conducted a case-control study assessing+

hypothyroidism in subjects with NDPHA (n = 65). They

were compared with migraine (n = 100, an episodic pain syndrome) and chronic posttraumatic headache (n = 69, a chronic pain syndrome).Hypothyroidism was extremely more frequent in NDPHA sufferers compared to migraine sufferers (odds ratio, 16; 95% CI, 3.6–72.0) and chronic posttraumatic headache (odds ratio, 10.3; 95% CI, 2.3–46.7).We suggested that hypothyroidism might play a role in the development of NDPHA and should be investigated in such cases."

I´m not firm in copyright issues and this excerpt might need to be deleted. If so, I´ll do so immediately.

Teri Robert, a patient advocate, spoke about it here:

http://headaches.about.com/od/comorbidconditions/a/ thyroid_comorb.htm

Post edited by: kolle, at: 04/21/2009 03:16 AM

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04/21/2009 04:44 AM
maddogenglishman
maddogenglishmanPosts: 38
Member

This is interesting to me as not only am I being sent for tests on my heart, but also my thyroid though it means I can't comment on the treatment side.

04/21/2009 05:22 AM
kolle
kollePosts: 148
Member

Hey Owen,

please let us know what your tests say.

Do you have any heart problems exept the headaches? I mean shortness of breath, high blood pressure or have you ever had a stroke? Just wondering.

Whatever, I hope the tests will hold some answers for you.


04/21/2009 05:32 AM
maddogenglishman
maddogenglishmanPosts: 38
Member

Will do though no date set for tests yet as having to wait a week just to see the doctor to discuss them.

No I'm not aware of any heart/breathing/BP problems but I've always wondered if the heart had some part in the headache. This is because while I developed the headache during while suffering a heavy cold it was also shortly after having to give up playing basketball regularly and while I do try to exercise, my heart rate never gets anywhere near as high as it used to.

At least both sets of tests will tick off a couple of other possibilities.

Thanks for your concern though.


04/21/2009 05:47 AM
kolle
kollePosts: 148
Member

Ahh, good you don´t have any problems there Smile

Why doesn´t your heartbeat go up as far as it used to? Do you mean you can´t exercise as hard as before (because of the pain)?

As far as I know it usually is a good sign if the heart rate is not too high. It is one of the effects of training. But it´s weird that this is the way it is, after you stopped working out regularly.


04/21/2009 06:11 AM
maddogenglishman
maddogenglishmanPosts: 38
Member

When I was playing regularly my heart rate would regularly go over 200 bpm whereas the exercise I do now doesn't get it above 160. Motivation to push through the (breathing) pain being in short supply being the main reason why it doesn't go so high whereas playing for the team always spurred me on.

The headache doesn't change with exercise though a couple of times it has improved afterwards (after playing a team sport where the game was so intense I ignored the agony my joints would be in afterwards).


04/21/2009 06:57 AM
kkaikke
kkaikke  
Posts: 34
Member

I have had NDPH for 10 months & also have hypothyrodism. I have been taking levothyroxine for 8 years to treat the thyroid condition. I asked my neurologist about the possible link between NDPH and thyroid problems and she hadn't found any evidence that supports that claim. I am definintely going to check out that book! Good luck with your tests.

04/21/2009 09:08 AM
MaryR
MaryR  
Posts: 4181
Group Leader

I have gotten mild hypothyroidism after I got NDPH, I take armour thyroid for it. It fixed my thyroid symptoms up, but I didn't notice a change in my headache. I don't know if my thyroid had been checked when I first got the headache or not, but the lethargy and mood problems started later a couple years later so I expect my thyroid was doing fine at the beginning. It is one of those things that I wonder though.

As far as whether you are getting enough of the thyroid medicine, they will probably want to check periodically and make sure you TSH is in the right range anyway. If it isn't they will adjust your meds to get it there. I think usually when your thyroid starts to quit working it is not likely to start again. I expect to have to supplement it for the rest of my life (which is sad since I am not 30 yet...it has no business going part time on me yet).


04/21/2009 04:43 PM
WendyLou
WendyLou  
Posts: 380
Member

I had a thyroid tumor (benign) removed when I was 18. That immediately sent me into a hypothyroid condition which I have been supplementing with Synthroid since (15+ years.) Very interesting that a number of us have thyroid issues and NDPH. I also asked my neurologist and endocrinologist about it during the last 18 months and both insisted that the headache was not impacted by my thyroid issues. Makes me wonder though . . . I really think there is some sort of auto-immune connection with these headaches. The number of incidents after a virus or illness, thyroid issues, positive ANA's, etc.

04/22/2009 12:31 AM
kolle
kollePosts: 148
Member

Thanks everyone. I guess, I would have prefered success stories, but oh well Wink

I wondered too if this thyroid issue was solely a reaction of my body to being constantly in pain. My tsh was first found to be elevated nine months after the onset of my headache. But I´m not sure if I have been tested before. I might have, as I used to spend blood.

For the auto-immune part of it, I don´t know if it´s an issue for me as my tpo-antibodies were inconclusive.

I might still try taking thyroxine, I really don´t know what else might work.

Post edited by: kolle, at: 04/22/2009 01:25 AM

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