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19 April 2005 @ 08:57 am
Head Case  
Good Salon.com article, Head Case, springboarding off a review of All in My Head to interview the author, and to discuss chronic pain and fatigue disorders. Excerpt:
If you're one of the Tired Girls, you already know what I'm talking about (although you may not have known you belonged to a newly founded identity group). If you're not, then there's probably one or more T.G.'s somewhere in your life -- in your family or your circle of friends. A Tired Girl is that youngish woman, probably in her 20s or 30s, stuck in a cycle of pain and fatigue she may not talk about openly, even with her closest friends. She is known to cancel long-planned social engagements at the last minute, to disappear early in the evening, to oversleep, to spend beautiful Saturdays alone in bed. Like Kamen, she's constantly trying some new drug, some new massage or chiropractic technique, some new combination of Chinese herbs, some new diet.

A Tired Girl may suffer from migraines or depression or chronic fatigue syndrome (now called CFIDS) or fibromyalgia or bipolar disorder or the persistent, mixed-headache syndrome called chronic daily headache (CDH), which is Kamen's diagnosis. It's quite possible she has more than one of these conditions; scientists are now inclined to believe that these ailments (along with epilepsy and other seizure disorders) are related at the neurological level, and people who suffer from one are exceptionally likely to have the others.
(Note: Reading full articles on Salon.com requires a day-pass.)
Trepkostrepkos on April 19th, 2005 05:06 pm (UTC)
Well, if this is you, at least it looks like you're going the right way with the exercise - not that that's usually anything other than a good idea.
(Deleted comment)
Anna S.: puppyeliade on April 19th, 2005 05:45 pm (UTC)
(Think your new vitamin regimen would help, here?)

I hope so! :)
raqsraqs on April 19th, 2005 06:06 pm (UTC)
the first paragraph's no help at all. that's me - except i'm without the pain. i have very seldom migraines and none of the other stuff. i'm just a bitter old loser.

let's not mix up Kinda Down and Loserish (my category) with actual neurological disorders...
Merry: merryocean - memerryish on April 19th, 2005 06:19 pm (UTC)
:: reads ::

:: diagnoses everyone I know ::

Alizarin_NYCalizarin_nyc on April 19th, 2005 06:42 pm (UTC)
Thanks for this...
I will read with relish.
But also believe I may be one of the Kinda Down and Loserish people as well!
MustangSallymustangsally78 on April 20th, 2005 12:57 am (UTC)
Dude, my birthday present to myself was a day in bed doing nothing but reading and mainlining Benadryl. I still had the headache and the pain but I didn't care as much.

My mother, grandmother, and great aunts all have/had fibromyalgia. I just refuse to be diagnosed so it won't be on my health record. How wrong is that? The problem with fibro is that it depletes your seratonin, making you even more depressed, and the muscle aches make the idea of exercise agony.

That being said, the only thing that's "good" for me is working outside - something about the Florida heat and the sunlight makes me feel better and I don't get the muscle aches as bad. Then again, it's a leisurely workout!

You might want to look into Bikram Yoga - the kind you do in a hot room.

Just thinkin'

Mustang"Tired Girl"Sally
wenchseniorwenchsenior on April 20th, 2005 01:31 pm (UTC)
I know I mentioned this before sometime...
I usually just do drive-by reads, and I know I sent Eliade a letter about this last year, but it might be of interest to youse guys to know that I suffered chronic pain and fatigue symptoms from early puberty: that included nearly daily headaches, sinus pain, joint and sometimes muscle aches, IBS, and also weird energy fluctuations (like, at least once per day I would go practically narcoleptic no matter how much sleep I'd had). I never put these symptoms together with my intermittent depression/anxiety and my irregular periods until at age 30 I was finally diagnosed with an insulin/hormonal disorder called PCOS. Normally people who have it are easy to identify...the common side effects make you look (literally) like the fat, hairy, bearded lady at the circus. However, I'm quite thin and not that hairy so it was missed until the symptoms got horribly worse in my late 20s.

Long story short, all I did was cut sugar and simple carbs WAY down, and ALL those lifelong symptoms went away. I'm not kidding. Obviously, diet issues would be at the root of an insulin disorder and would have more effect on me because of that. But seriously, all of you, you cannot believe how much difference diet makes unless you make a big change. Sugar fucks you up, yo! Even for relatively healthy people, it affects your adrenals and your hormones bigtime. Women don't always realize how much their hormone levels contribute to depression and pain, either.

Anyway, make sure you get your blood sugar responses checked, and a full hormone screening too. Don't rely on doctors to suggest the right thing. In my experience, you have to do most of the leg work yourself and request the appropriate tests.

Blah blah blah. Butting out now.


Alizarin_NYCalizarin_nyc on April 20th, 2005 02:42 pm (UTC)
Re: I know I mentioned this before sometime...
Tracy, you're on to something.
I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism after getting a bunch of tests done; but taking the meds for that hasn't really improved my energy level and weight loss, but if I don't take them, I really go downhill fast. That's something that often goes undiagnosed in women as well, apparently.
And my accupuncturist (when I could afford her a few years ago) told me to cut sugars and simple carbs too. That combined with accupuncture helped the headaches and backaches. So now that I can't afford to go, I have to suck it up.
Butting back out, now!