Cluster Headaches

Shrooms possess many qualities, powers and beneficial effects to their users, on many different levels. Shrooms are a kind of be all to all men. Some people use them purely recreationally, others to push the boundaries of their spiritual development. There are even those that use shrooms for perhaps their greatest purpose - to help people heal, and improve their health. In fact it turns out, for some user's who are afflicted with Cluster headaches, psilocybin mushrooms represent one of the few things that can actually help to relieve their condition, where no other conventional drugs have. This the SLF feels is another powerful argument for regulation of magic mushrooms - after all - how can it be illegal to take a medicine that helps your condition, enabling you to live as normal a life as possible? The SLF feels the time has finally come for the government to admit, they have got their drugs policy wrong, and now is the time to treat user's of drugs with respect, instead of brandishing them off as criminals. With this in mind we wanted to highlight the plight of this long standing condition and it's users as well as any organisations that are dedicated to to this cause.

About Cluster headaches

Cluster Headaches - nicknamed "suicide headache", is a neurological disease that involves, as its most prominent feature, an immense degree of pain. "Cluster" refers to the tendency of these headaches to occur periodically, with active periods interrupted by spontaneous remissions. The cause of the disease is currently unknown.

Signs and symptoms

Cluster headaches are extremely painful, unilateral headaches of a piercing quality. The duration of the common attack is 15 minutes to three hours. Onset of an attack is rapid, and most often without the preliminary signs that are characteristic of a migraine. However, some sufferers report preliminary sensations of diverse description, often referred to as "shadows," that may warn them an attack is imminent. Though the headaches are almost exclusively unilateral, there are many documented cases of "side-shifting" between cluster periods, or, even rarer, simultaneously (within the same cluster period) bilateral headache. They are often initially mistaken for brain tumours and Multiple Sclerosis often until patients are treated with corticosteroids and then imaged. Trigeminal neuralgia can also bring on headaches with similar qualities.

Pain

The degree of pain involved in cluster headaches is markedly greater than in other headache conditions, including migraine. It has been described by female patients as being more severe than childbirth. The pain is lancinating or boring in quality, and is located behind the eye or in the temple, sometimes radiating to the neck or shoulder. An analogy frequently used to describe the pain is that it is like a red-hot poker inserted into the eye. The condition was originally named Hortons Neuralgia after Dr. B.T Horton who postulated the first theory as to their pathologenesis. His original paper describes the severity of the headaches as being able to take normal men and force them to suicide.

From Horton's 1939 original paper on cluster headache:

"Our patients were disabled by the disorder and suffered from bouts of pain from two to twenty times a week. They had found no relief from the usual methods of treatment. Their pain was so severe that several of them had to be constantly watched for fear of suicide. Most of them were willing to submit to any operation which might bring relief"

Other symptoms

The cardinal symptoms of the cluster headache attack are ptosis (drooping eyelid), conjunctival injection (red-eye), lacrimation (tearing), rhinorrhea (runny nose), and, less commonly, facial blushing, swelling, or sweating. These features are known as the autonomic symptoms. The attack is also associated with restlessness, the sufferer often pacing the room or rocking back and forth. Less frequently, he or she will have an aversion to bright lights and loud noise during the attack. Nausea is not typical of cluster headache, though it has been reported. The neck is often stiff or tender in the aftermath of a headache, with jaw or tooth pain sometimes present.

Cyclical recurrence and regular timing

Cluster headaches are occasionally referred to as "alarm clock headaches", because of the regularity of its timing and its ability to wake a person from sleep. Thus it has been known to strike at the same time each night or morning, often at precisely the same time during the day a week later. This has prompted researchers to speculate an involvement of the brain's "biological clock" or circadian rhythm. In some cases, cluster headaches remain "steady" without cyclical ups and downs for days.

Episodic or chronic

In episodic cluster headache, these attacks occur once or more daily, often at the same times each day, for a period of several weeks, followed by a headache-free period lasting weeks, months, or years. Approximately 10–15% of cluster headache sufferers are chronic; they can experience multiple headaches every day for years.

Cluster headaches occurring in two or more cluster periods lasting from 7 to 365 days with a pain-free remission of one month or longer between the clusters are considered episodic. If the attacks occur for more than a year without a pain-free remission of at least one month, the condition is considered chronic. Chronic clusters run continuously without any "remission" periods between cycles. The condition may change from chronic to episodic and from episodic to chronic. Remission periods lasting for decades before the resumption of clusters have been known to occur.

Other names

Cluster headaches have been called by several other names in the past including Erythroprosopalgia of Bing, Ciliary neuralgia, Migrainous neuralgia, Erythromelagia of the head, Horton's headache (named after Bayard T. Horton, an American neurologist who was the first to accurately describe the headache in 1939), Histaminic cephalalgia, Petrosal neuralgia, sphenopalatine neuralgia, Vidian neuralgia, Sluder's neuralgia, and Hemicrania angioparalyticia. Sluder's neuralgia (syndrome) and cluster pain can often be temporarily stopped with nasal lidocaine spray. If successful, outpatient nasal septoplasty and splinting can resolve the condition.