Sunday, May 22, 2016

Aesculap proGav Shunt

After a week of stopping my medication, for the time being, I no longer have tingling pains on the top left and right corners of my head. I have some throbbing on the left top corner of my head and pain from the shunt valve.  This goes away and returns at different times during the day. I read my medical records from 2014, (curious to know more about the small device which throbs at the top of my head) I had thought the anti-siphon device could be disabled, as I thought that was the cause of my shunt pain. 

However, upon reading about the specific model I have: Aesculap proGav Shunt and it does the following: proGAV combines the advantages of an adjustable valve with unsurpassed over drainage protection of the ShuntAssistant valve to create a system that provides the ultimate in patient care and treatment. With this combination, physiological drainage can be maintained in any body position-from supine to upright. 

I realized maybe turning of the anti-siphon device isn't an option because this shunt has a combination of anti-siphon and adjustable valve.  No end to my shunt pain...yet it makes me wonder about the other shunt models and maybe I can get a different one....I most likely won't see a new neurosurgeon until the end of August early September....

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Three Weeks Later

I've been on a tricyclic Anti-Depressant for the last three weeks for treatment of the various pains and tingling sensations I've had in my head.  The medication was suppose to suppress the nerves affected by the multiple brain injuries I had; make my head and scalp numb so I wouldn't feel anything. Everything was working for the first week. I would take one pill each night before bed ( they would help me sleep ) the following day I would feel a drowsiness and not myself. The pills  helped to alleviate the tingling and throbbing pains around my head (front and back) however after one week, the sensations would return.  The second week, I would try two pills at night before bedtime.  Doing so made me even more tired during the day. My reflexes slower, I felt as if I had been taken over by the pills emotionally and physically.

On two pills a night, I wanted to sleep during the day. I'm home all the time, and taking two pills each night made me want to spend all day sleeping under warm covers.  And yet again, after the first week of trying two pills each night, the throbbing and tingling returned in various parts of my head.  I could tell where this was going...I knew if I increased my dosage each week, it would only ware off after one week.   The third week, I continued the two pills a night and the slowly reduced the number down to one, then half a pill.  

The good news is after taking myself off the medication, I noticed the pain had been reduced. Maybe my body got used to taking the medications that it's learned how to suppress the pain on it's own. I haven't heard my cerebral shunt beep in three weeks. The TMD I had since my brain injuries in 2014 has been reduced.  I haven't had pain inside my right ear for three weeks. I've had occasional tingling at the right top corner of my head and some throbbing pain at the front of my scalp and on the shunt valve. However, these sensations go away on their own sometimes....I was introduced to lavender chamomile body lotion and body wash which has helped me sleep a little better.  The throbbing on the shunt valve returned while I am writing this post. Not as intense as before three weeks ago....I believe I'll get to see a neurosurgeon at some point this year. Maybe he/she will be able to figure out whether or not I need the anti-siphon device, which I believe might be the reason behind the shunt pain I've been feeling.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016


Yesterday, I saw a new neurologist who for the first time ( after seeing 4 neurologists ) suggested the pain I feel in my head and scalp is a result of the trauma I experienced in 2014.  She said it was a reaction of my body to what had happened and she prescribed me a medication to take which is suppose to help with the pain. She prescribed me an anti depressant for the pain, which I'm not sure whether or not I'm going to take it or not. However, I liked how she actually listened to my symptoms instead of assumed I was just depressed and dismissed what I was saying.  The issue I had was when I had suggested seeing a neurosurgeon and she told me most neurosurgeons don't take on patients whom they don't know. They don't want to interfere with another doctor's work.  I think that's a cop - out really... It's not realistic to say the person who put your shunt in is the one who has to do the surgeries, it doesn't make sense. You know how unpredictable shunts are and when you have to get it revised, whether or not your doctor is there someone has to fix it.  I've already experienced situations when my doctor wasn't available and who ever was there fixed my shunt.   We know how well that turned out.....

My mom and I had explain to her how I had been treated by my last neurosurgeon ( ignoring me) which was why I didn't want to see him again. She said she would refer me to a neurosurgeon whom I'll see this summer.  I'll see her again in June. I'm tired of fighting with these doctors to 'convince' them I know what I'm taking about when it's related to my shunt.