I want to give you guys a quick health update because I’ve had several of you email or message me to ask about my absence from blogging. In late June, I began to have daily positional headaches. Basically I get a headache anytime I am upright for more than a few minutes. The longer I stay upright, the more intense the headache becomes, so I have been spending a great deal of my time for the past 3+ months lying on the sofa or in the bed.
Initially, my spine specialist thought these were tension headaches, caused by tight muscles in my neck and upper back, but when various forms of bodywork did not relieve the headaches, she referred me to neurology.
Since August, I’ve been shuffling around from doctor to doctor, trying to find out the cause of these headaches. Last month, after three days of imaging at my local hospital, my doctors finally confirmed I have a spinal fluid leak. We initially thought the leak was likely located at the site of the back surgery I’d had back in May, but it’s actually higher up on my spine at L2-L3. So, at this point, it’s considered to be a “spontaneous” leak, meaning there’s no obvious cause for it. I suspect the leak may be somehow Lyme related since a quick search of online support groups found numerous posts from others with Lyme who have had these leaks.
I had a blood patch last week to repair the leak. A blood patch is essentially how it sounds: Blood is taken from the arm and then injected near the site of the leak. If the patch works, then the blood forms a clot and plugs the hole, restoring pressure in the spinal sac and relieving the headaches.
My blood patch held for four days, but unfortunately, the patch failed, and the headaches returned. It’s not unusual for the first blood patch to fail, but obviously I’m disappointed that it didn’t hold. I have a second patch scheduled for later this month. Hopefully that one will work, and I will be able to return to blogging soon.
I have learned much during these past three months of being mostly bedbound and navigating the medical system, which I’m sure I’ll be writing about in the future. I love you guys and miss connecting with you.
These leaks can be difficult to treat so if you feel called to do so, please feel free to send your prayers or healing thoughts my way. I could definitely use them!
When I can, I’m still posting links to articles and sharing updates on my Facebook page for those who want to stay updated.