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      HealthWACH: Zapping away migraines

      HealthWACH

      COLUMBIA (WACH)

      Migraines are the worst and most painful headaches. Those who suffer from them often experience the profound throbbing in the head and they become sensitive to sound and light. At times, migraines can last anywhere from a couple of hours to a couple of days. This excruciating headache may be accompanied with a tingling sensation in the arm or leg, blind spots, and flashes of light. SYMPTOMS: Common symptoms of migraines vary depending on the individual, but typically they include:

      • Nausea or vomiting
      • Pain behind the eyes
      • Throbbing pain in the head
      • Increased pain when engaging in physical activities
      • Increased pain when around light and noise

      There is no cure for migraines, but that does not mean that they cannot be relieved. Medication is usually prescribed by doctors to help alleviate the patient??s symptoms and this is divided into two categories; preventative medications and pain-relieving medications. Preventive medications are designed to be taken daily and were created to cut down the number of headaches a patient has. Pain-relieving medications are only taken in the event that a migraine occurs to cease occurring symptoms.

      A new way of treating migraines is becoming highly recommended by patients and doctors. The occipital nerve stimulator is a procedure that treats migraines and reduces the amount of migraines that a patient has. The occipital nerve stimulator works with a pacemaker; a small device in placed on the skull and is linked to the pacemaker that is inserted at the chest. All a patient needs to do is use the remote that controls the pacemaker to send electrical pulses to the nerves in the brain. This is supposed to relieve migraine symptoms and keep them from returning so frequently. The more pain that a patient is experiencing, the higher the electrical impulses will be