Thursday, March 6, 2008

Cortical Spreading Depression

1. Wake up with a killer migraine.

2. Take one shifting exam with head feeling like it could explode anytime.

3. Try everything to ameliorate pain.  Eat a good nutritious meal, drink two liters of water, keep self in ambient temperature, get eight hours of sleep, do deep breathing exercises, take painkillers, stop reading your handouts and books, keep self in horizontal position, and close eyes against the migraine's aura.

4. Cringe as pain continues to pulsate and migraine aura intensifies.  Restrain self from chucking up the food, water and meds-the toilet bowl need not be your best friend.

5. Watch in horror as BP (normally 90/60) shoots up to 130/100.

6. Take mega-dose of Ibuprofen and start praying the rosary.

7. Try to sleep against the pain.  Place sleep mask over eyes to shut out the dancing stars, the blinking lights, and ribbons of colors associated with the pain.  Distract self from thoughts of an impending cerebrovascular accident or a possibility of a brain tumor.

8. Wake up with a sore head.

9. Remember that you weren't able to go over your notes and text for the shifting exam and the final exam in another subject.

10. Sigh and say, "Oh well, I'm just experiencing the complexities of life."

What is wrong with my brain?  Something triggered a cortical spreading depression that led to release of inflammatory substances that irritated my trigeminal nerve roots that translated to the mammoth migraine.  I can only sigh with regret because the migraine occurred while I was taking the exam for my favorite subject, and my head was still sore (and devoid of some necessary bits of information) when I took the exam for my second favorite subject.

Maybe they were right in saying I'm stressing myself too much trying to read the material when I can always read the samplex instead.  (And darn, those two exams were mostly samplex-based.)

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