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Question asked by BHnCA on May 24, 2018
Latest reply on Jan 10, 2021 by elvan

I slipped today. Before anybody tries convincing me my reason is based on a flimsy excuse, I would be inclined to challenge them.  I’ve been doing good in my first 7 days of not smoking. I even got thru the first most difficult 3 days and was finally feeling like I can DO this. Going off the patches made the effort a little more difficult, but I was sticking with it. In the last 3 nights, though, I’ve been woke up twice from sound sleep with severe headaches caused from occipital neuralgia (diagnosed 2 years ago) which was treated successfully with gabapentin.  I since ran out of that medication, but was told the 6 month dose was probably enough to settle the nerves down.  Now the nerve/s is/are apparently ticked off, again, and with a vengeance. When these headaches strike it feels like a meat cleaver has been buried in the top of my head.  It’s an intense, icy, stinging pain that gradually radiates acrossed my head. My eyes water and it takes everything I have to just breathe through the pain with an ice bag on top of my head, and wait until it starts settling down, then I have a mild headache for the following 24 hours. Sometimes it’s so bad it feels like the top of my head had been ripped open and my immediate reflex is to grab my head to hold it together, because it feels like ice cold air is rushing into my skull.  NOT fun.  I’ve had a full series of MRI’s and CT scans before to rule out things like a stroke; occipital neuralgia is the confirmed diagnosis. As if the fear of continuing to have these fierce and unexpected headaches isn’t enough, another problem arose today - GETTING a refill for the medication that treats the cause.  And it’s not because I don’t have excellent insurance.


This afternoon I discovered that GETTING a refill is next to impossible, because the neurologist who prescribed it is no longer within my hospital system. A new neurologist was assigned to me awhile back and my first appointment was to have been 2 months ago. They changed that appointment to May 24th, though and, last week they called, again, and pushed it out even further, to June 22nd. Meanwhile the headaches had started coming back, so I requested them to, at least, order me a refill till I could SEE the new doctor. The nurse said “no problem, we commonly do that, especially when we are the ones rescheduling appointments.”  What a relief!  Fast forward to May 21st, when the pharmacy called and said the new doctor would NOT order a refill after all. So I called the neurologist’s office for help. They were no help at all, because the new doctor wasn’t the one who originally ordered gabapentin for me. I get it, but when I asked what I should do under the circumstances, the receptionist told me “call you’re primary doctor, that’s what she’s for.”  


That was no help, either, because my doctor is on vacation till the end of a June and nobody will order me a refill without seeing me first, plus I was told a neurologist would have to order gabapentin, anyway, vs my primary doctor (an internist). I get that, too, so I asked if I they have a neurologist working in Urgent Care Clinic? She didn’t think so, but would check, but I already know the ONLY neurologist who works at that hospital has already pushed my appointment out to the end ofJune.  I even told them I am so afraid of the headaches that I am willing to drive to another neurologist within 100 miles if they could just get me in, but that plea was to no avail either.  So I wait and just pray I don’t have any more headaches in the meantime. Not one of my better days.


So yeah, I slipped. And even when I did I knew damn well it’s not going to change anything I’m experiencing at this moment, but I made the choice to give in because I was a train wreck and all I wanted was SOMETHING that would relieve my frustration and tears even if it was only a temporary fix.  I’ll get back to my quit, I swear. I just don’t think it’s going to be today is all.