This thing might work for some.  Proof of its working is thin, but that tends to be a chronic problem with this kind of device.  The patients studied with Cefaly had migraines not over a few times a month. My patients — who use marijuana, generally of the sativa type — have the most intense migraine headaches I have ever seen or heard of and have them on a daily basis.  This is pretty amazing, since I worked for one year in a major Midwestern university headache clinic. The major questions are what causes migraine headaches, and whether this device indeed nips them in the bud. Read more on Cefaly, the Anti-Migraine Device…

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I was at a Midwestern medical center, taking internal referrals.  The referring physician was a medical doctor I had never heard of.  Of course, there was no information about why a 70 year old grandmotherly woman with white hair and a surprisingly pleasant smile had been referred.

She told me she had headaches.  She was very happy that she did not have one on that day.  They were horrible and even an emergency room injection of narcotics did not do anything for them once they started.  They were variable, sometimes brief and sometimes lasting a whole day.  They could be on either side, or both, but most often cut a line from above one ear to above the other ear.  They were getting worse and quickly.

One of the smartest things anyone ever told me (It was an ancient professor in France, who was so experienced he had to say smart things once in a while) was that if a patient could not be diagnosed, or did not make any sense, just spend more time with the patient and get more history.  He said that very often patients knew exactly why they had the problems they had. Read more on Unconventional Cure — Leave The Headache Behind…

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Even though it has been slow and gentle, my weight loss (yes, 150 pounds without surgery in a couple of years and yes, I will speak of it more later and elsewhere) means, among other things, that I have located some new veins — and today, an artery.

Now the veins that made me happiest were, and still are, the ones on the back of my hands. I have a memory etched into my soul of a chief resident in neurology at the University of Minnesota who told me privately,and with all of the discretion that he could figure out how to muster,that I should be ashamed of being as fat as I was. Because if ever I had a serious health crisis, and nobody could find a vein, someone could die from lack of a proper venous access. It didn’t take any training in psychiatry to figure out that some time, in the past not too distant to that remark, he had failed to find a vein in someone who died. Of course, I felt horrible.  But oh, the joy as I slowly lost weight and was able to locate, when I had enough liquid volume on board, big juicy veins on the back of my hand, even as I can now. Every time I look at them I think “Wow.  Even a first year medical student who has never seen a vein on a living person would not only know immediately I have wonderful veins, but could pierce them with just about any kind of tubing, no matter how poorly suited for the job.  They could not miss. They would be happy. They would think they are the next star of “Boston Medical” and they would call their parents and ask for some spare money to celebrate.  This is what it is to be a “real doctor.”

Actually, most veins are now pierced by far less qualified and far lower paid professionals, certified “phlebotomists.” They have taken my blood in unskilled and inappropriate ways, sometimes screwing up all pretense of sterile procedure by doing things like ripping fingers out of latex gloves to get a better “feel.”  Another cheap doctor substitute, foisted on people who do not know what they are NOT getting. Read more on As If By Magic An Artery Appears…

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She was a woman in her early seventies. She looked tired, almost haggard, although neatly dressed.  She had obviously seen a lot of hardship in her life, but she wore it well.  She looked like someone you could trust, a “salt of the earth” kind of person.

It is unusual to see a senior come to a psychiatric clinic for the first time.  We see women of all ages, it is true; about 70% of the psychiatric patients in most average (not Department of Veterans Affairs) medical clinics are female.

Empty ChairShe had been referred by a general physician who could do nothing for her headaches.  He had wisely decided that starting her on any kind of potentially addictive painkiller was a very bad idea.

I took a detailed history.  It seemed that the headaches came on when her husband yelled at her or threatened her.  He did that often enough.  He was of some kind of northern European origin.  She had married him after the death of her first husband in an accident; her first husband had been her real love-match.  But she was a traditional housewife, who wanted to keep house more than anything in the world.

Read more on The Power Of The Empty Chair…

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