J.D."S Diary
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J D Crowley

my age 52

Diagnosis: diagnosed 1995
Clusters started: Clusters started 1986

born in Canada 1 daughter 3 sisters parents deceased construction work

I first started getting cluster headaches in late summer of 1986 doctors did blood work normal BP normal 110/70 pulse 68 bpm next attacks 14 months later relized quickly that alcohol was a trigger and that CAFFEINE helped to stop attacks this cycle continued at 14 month with no diagnosis until 1994 went to hospital after 4 days only sleep at 45minute intervals followed by attack always right temple ,right nostril plugged or runny right eye tearing,intense pain. Tried all conventional therapies ergotamine ,sansert ,verapamil ,accupuncture ,chiropractic ,oxygen,naturopath,quitting smoking, etc, my sister a Nurse Pratictioner sent me a book 5th one I read .I reccomend Strongly. "How to heal your Headache" nothing new in treatment for Clusters but the most complete list of trigger foods I have seen. I have for the past 12 years followed what I thought was a "Clean diet" Dark green leafy vegetables, poached or steamed fish,no foods from can or box, no salt, oatmeal 2, cups of COFFEE, Caffeine a day.By eliminating Caffeine in All forms and following Heal your Headaches trigger foods list and using a food diary I went 23 months without any cluster headaches I went off my diet and went back to coffee and alcohol and eggs and prepared foods thinking at 21 months I was "Cured". I am now Back on restricted diet. But the trigger foods list and the elimination of caffeine,alcohol and stopping smoking I believe gave me RELIEF. It is not easy but it is healthy along with walking half an hour twice daily clean foods regular massage therapy neck shoulders and head over the years I have done this I have reduced the number of headaches per day by at least HALF and usually if I don't nap I can sleep 6 or 7 hours without waking up with a ful blown attack during the night. I always walk up with a cluster,but I keep 1.5 liter bottle of water on my nighstand at room temperature and green apples nearby. I drink half the bottle of water and eat an apple and usually cluster goes away in 5 or 10 minutes instead of 45 minutes of hell. My advice to anyone who has cluster headaches is buy the book "How to heal your Headache" written by Harvard researcher follow and eliminate trigger foods especially CAFFEINE
Caffeine it definitely causes rebound clusters along with alcohol, cheese, chocolate, msg , citrus fruits , cold cuts, etc, etc, NO doctor is going to cure you YOU have to TAKE CONTROL of WHAT YOU EAT. I hope this helps I would not wish cluster headache on my worst enemy.
your story


Date Event
Jan 2003 sample event
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