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  1. #1
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    Post Ride Headache (severe) HELP!

    Alright...... A little information regarding my situation before I jump into my problem. I am an avid rider, road, mountain, etc. I ride alot (almost everyday) and have been doing this for a while. I have never had health problems (Im 23). I eat correctly, mainly all organic, my meats are free range chicken, and my red meat is cut a to a minimum (and when it is, it's veg. feed, freerange.) I eat well on a ride and hydrate correctly.

    GOOD INFO: Last summer, July 2006, I had a nasty wreck on my bike. I was coming down a hill at 25-30mph, went to jump a bridge, cased it, and went head first into a tree. Dead stop, I destroyed my helmet, thankfully it was there, but felt no pain, only a loud crack, I felt fine for a while. Finished my ride and went out to eat. Now is where the fun begins. Sitting at the table waiting on my food, I began to feel sea sick. Not like I was going to vomit, but the room started to spin, I became confused, dizzy, and had blured vision, w/ small white spots in my eyes. The following morning I went to see my doctor, was diagnosed w/ a severe concussion, was told to take it easy and rest. I did, had the full effects of a concussion and a little more. 2 weeks after my wreck, my neck became tight, I had poor rotation, and it hurt ALL the time to move. **PLEASE NOTE: No X-rays were taken, ever. Only CAT scans and everything turned up fine.** I went to a physical therapist, she diagnosed me w/ a good amount of scare tissue build up and begain to break it down w/ eat and electrodes. This went on for 3-4 weeks, twice a week. I felt better and regained good rotation.
    Since July 06 I have had NO PROBLEMS. I have trained hard, rode hard, and logged tons of miles, w/ no problems. UNTIL..............

    Now, two weeks ago (yesterday) I went for a ride, everything was normal, nothing different. Rode 12-14 miles in good conditions, felt good. Drove home and about an hour later had a nasty spliting headache. The headache started at the base of my neck, went up to the top of my head, then behind my eyes. The pain behind my eyes was enough that I could not open them due to the senesitivity to light. Noise also hurt. I laid down in a dark room, took a nap, then woke up around 8pm w/ no relief. Around 10pm the headache had increased and my parents felt I needed to ge to the ER. Long story short, they diagnosed me w/ a bad migrane. Which I think is BS. NO ONE in my family has ever had migranes, nothing. Second, I don't fit the mold for a person w/ a migrane.

    OK--That was on Saturday 4-14. That following week, I felt like crap, had NO energy, didnt ride, had no motovation to do anything but sleep and eat. My apitite went through the rough and I did not gain an ounce, actually lost weight. I couldnt eat enough. I would wake up at night 2am-3am, in agony because I was hungary. This went on untill Friday 4-20 (no jokes please.) I went back home (Im still in school) to see a chiropractor about my neck. Thinking I had done something that related back to last summer. The Dr. took x-rays (first ever) and noticed my spin was straight and I had no curvature to it, like a normal spin. (It is supposed to look like an "S", not mine! So, the good doctor said this was 100% related to my wreck last summer and I could have factured my c1 or c2 vertebra w/ out knowing it. This would have caused my spine to heal incorrectly and cause my problems.
    Now, my headace would have come from my Atlas, since my Atlas was off, and irrating the nerves, then this could attribute to my nasty headache and all the symptons I felt the previous week.
    The Dr. laid me on the table and worked some cracking magic. He unloaded alot of my joints in my back (not sure exactly what) but they were LOUD!! This was all in my neck, upper back, and mid back, nothing lower. Since then I felt MUCH better, I had no felt this good in a LONG time.
    NOW, the fun part. This week 4-21-28 has been the study week for exams and all my projects. I have not ridden much at all this week since I have been busy w/ school work. I rode, but it was w/ OUT a helmet, pedaling around school, just to get outside for a bit, no discomfort, nothing. So, I decide to go for a rode ride Saturday moring 4-28. Felt good, a little weak from not riding in almost 2 weeks, but good. Good power, didnt get hungary, and pulled off 48 miles w/ PLENTY left in me to go. I left the bike shop, came back to school, and felt the SAME type of headache start to come on. I got scared, worried, and annoyed! I ate some lunch, felt a little better and decided to see how bad it would get. I finished my ride around 10.30am and was feeling the effects at 11.30am. An hour later. Same as before, but dulled, not as intense.
    So, my brother calls me, who is at school as well about an hour's drive away and wants to know if I'd like to ride w/ him for the afternoon. I drive down to see him and ride. (Mountain bike.) The trails were nice, good conditions, felt good, headache went away while I was on the bike, good energy, but I do notice that when I put forth an effort on the mountain bike, while sprinting, climbing, any HARD effort, I can feel a WIERD sensation in my neck, its not right and it doesnt cause any pain, its simply uncomfortable and wierd. We ride 15miles and stop. Go grab a drink and watch some kids on a BMX track. Nothing, no headache, etc. I thinking, Im good, but hold on, it gets better. We drive back into town to grab dinner w/ our Dad and I start to feel the headache come on. I begin to get confused, irratable, and have a hard time remembering things. For examle, my bro. gave me directions on where to park on campus and I could remember them, had to call him back to get them. I left my keys in my Jeep, forgot my walet, etc. Just stupid, wierd things. But I was also getting hungary. I drank some water and waited till we went to dinner for food. Right before dinner, I had a bad headache and was becoming irrateable. Dinner came, I felt better, and all was good.
    I drove back to school last night, around 11pm and my headache came back, not bad, but it was there. Went to bed, and now Im writing this LONG disertation on what's going on.

    Any idea's, thoughts, THANKS! and thanks for reading!

  2. #2
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    You want help with that? On an anonymous forum? Here is some advise, either go to a real doctor, or at least post this on a doctors forum.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by elake
    You want help with that? On an anonymous forum? Here is some advise, either go to a real doctor, or at least post this on a doctors forum.
    Thank you for the insite on what I need to do. I have been to doctors, this is posted on Dr. forums, this is posted else where.
    I simply posted this HERE because I am a mountain biker. I would like others opinions, maybe someone else has had the problem before.......Any information I can get is helpful. Your post only henders that.
    Thanks.

  4. #4
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    Your symptoms sound a lot like a migraine headache.

    I would at least listen to the doctor, about migraines, and possibly try some of the medication out there for them.

    I got them for a while at a summer hockey camp, when I went from the cold arena to a hot summer day to play soccer outside.

    I don't think the medical profession really understands migraines, sure some are hereditary, but some are not.

  5. #5
    mdc
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    Dude, go to a neurologist, get an MRI and make sure your brain is ok first. If your brain is ok go to a spine doctor (not a chiro) and have them do either a CT or an MRI to check out your neck and back. Hopefully its nothing major, but rule out the bad stuff first, then start looking into getting back into PT. You do not want to f -around with your brain or your back, especially when your still pretty young..just my 0.02

  6. #6
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    I used to get headaches...

    I used to get headaches mainly after morning rides, but mine was related to carbo stores. I found that by eating a relatively large meal around 8 on the night before a morning ride cured the problem. Also, if I eat something too sweet after a hard ride Iíll get the same kind of headache a little later on in the day. It doesnít sound like this is your problem, but it could be. Make sure you eat a decent amount of carbs before a ride or the night before a morning ride.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by farmertan
    I used to get headaches mainly after morning rides, but mine was related to carbo stores. I found that by eating a relatively large meal around 8 on the night before a morning ride cured the problem. Also, if I eat something too sweet after a hard ride Iíll get the same kind of headache a little later on in the day. It doesnít sound like this is your problem, but it could be. Make sure you eat a decent amount of carbs before a ride or the night before a morning ride.
    word. and its getting hot. after the doc stuff of course.

  8. #8
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    My mother in law had a fright a few weeks ago, really exercising hard (swimming lengths), suddenly gets severe, severe blinding headache sweeping up from the back of her head it was so bad she can hardly bear to keep her eyes open and stay afloat to get out of the pool. So of course she freaks out and off to the doc. Here's the funny thing the doctor says this is something that primarily happens to some men when they orgasm, and other people when they over-do exercise when they have not built up to it, it has some latin name to do with coitus and is harmless (apart from being annoying).
    Needless to say we get great mileage out of teasing her about that .
    Anyway could be something minor like that. I can tell by your post your quite worried, so hopefully it's something minor as well.

  9. #9
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    I would not rule out a migraine and call it BS because you have never had them before and no one in your family has ever had them.
    You do have something that easily could explain why you are able to get them now. That is you had head tramra done and it did some damage to your brain. Now part of your brain is a little messed up and it never fully heals correctly and from your crash a year ago you caused you self permitted damage and now you are going to have to deal withf getting migraines from time to time. I will agree they suck. I been taken out of action for a few days due to them.

  10. #10
    FleshwoundGravityResearch
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    I agree with timeless on the migraine deal. No one in my family ever had them but I do occasionally get them now.... and they are entirely debilitating. I now get cluster headaches which are nearly as bad and (lucky me) more frequent.

    Of course the chiro "found" the cause of your problems, they always do. Don't get me wrong, they serve a purpose well. It is just when they go outside their boundaries that I have issues with.

    Go to the neurologist.

  11. #11
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    First off I agree with trying to see a doctor, and not putting too much weight on what the chiropractor said.

    "No X-rays were taken, ever. Only CAT scans and everything turned up fine."

    Just to help put your mind at alittle ease about your initial treatment. A CAT or CT scan is like a 3D x-ray. It's better then just a normal x-ray. You should be able to get the radiologist report to veryify what they examined, hopefully it says you spine looked normal.

    Not that this is your same problem, but I have gottten some pretty bad headaches after a ride too. I think my is related to carbos or something though. I try to eat something (fruit, gu) right after a ride, and I haven't had as much problems.

    Good luck, go to the doctors!!

  12. #12
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    It sounds like you have made every effort to find out the problem...

    ...but you might be getting tension headaches.

    Tension headaches can be severe and debilitating. Alot of tension headaches are mis-diagnosed as migrains.

    For about 4 years after every ride I used to get a headache.

    The main ingredient was tension in my back and shoulders putting my ribs out. This caused pain referal up into my neck head and eyes. Effectivly laying me out until I could sleep it off a.k.a. release the tension. Nausea, light sensitivty, eye pain, upper neck pain you name it.

    I have also had pretty serious crashes XC, Downhilling and snowbaording, causing various injuries to my head and neck almost always leading to a headache.

    My recipe for success:

    1) ICE is your best friend
    2) See your chirpractor regularily, even if you feel fine.
    3) ICE your back, neck, shoulder blades

    Heat will only cause inflammation in the area aggrivating it more. ICE ICE ICE

    My chiropractor has improved my quality of life 100% it took almost 2 years of regular visits but I am now headache free and can ride harder and faster than ever.

    I still go once a week.

    I was scared that I was doomed forever to fear headaches after riding , 4 years is a long time to suffer.

    It will be a slow journey back especially after such a bad crash, but stay focused and determined.

    Also check your bike position, make sure you are not winging your shoulder blades out to reach your bars this will put a rib out in a very short time.

    good luck.

    BTW: it makes perfect sense to post this here your experience is not uncommon in mountainbiking.

  13. #13
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    A HUGE thank you to everyone that posted and took the time to read my long article. I am worried and concerened since Im only 23 and have never had health problems, aside from the broken bones, cuts, and massive amounts of road rash.

    I have another appointment w/ my chiro. on Thrusday, hopefully, something good will come of that. Also, my parents are looking into this more and have me set up to go so an orthopedic dr. as well, whom specializes in the upper spine, neck area.

    As for myself, I have ridden several times this week, nothing hard, just out and about on the bike, I did lossen my helmet and play around w/ my bike position. The helmet helped out, but the position on my bike is good.
    One thing I am noticing is the amount of stress I am building up. With all of my work that needs to be done this week for school and little time to do it, Im beginning to feel the headaches come on, even in the mornings after I wake up.
    It is really wiered, but hopefully I will determine the problem.

    Thank you again.

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