Laura Kellogg had learned to live with migraine headaches. For more than 20 years – since the age of seven – they struck like clockwork once, sometimes, twice a month. And when they did, Laura retreated to her dark and quiet bedroom to lie down and simply wait out the excruciating head pain and its accompanying nausea and vomiting. Her migraines were painful and draining, but something she had learned to accept.
But then the left side of her body went numb – something she couldn’t accept. After multiple scans, X-rays and other tests, Laura’s Leavenworth-based primary care physician sent her to neurosurgeon Robert M. Beatty, MD, medical director of the Midwest Neuroscience Institute at Overland Park Medical Center. It took him a short time to ascertain that her problem was not surgical. He then referred her to his colleague at the Neuroscience Institute, neurologist Muhammad Nashatizadeh, MD.
“Dr. Nashatizadeh sat down with me and we talked for two hours,” says Laura, of her late December appointment. “He reviewed all my records and history and asked me all kinds of questions. He told me he thought the numbness was related to my migraines. He was the first to make that connection.”
Dr. Nashatizadeh also made the connection between Laura’s high level of stress and difficulty sleeping to a depleted serotonin level, which in turn was contributing to her migraines. It turned into a vicious cycle as the low serotonin and migraines then affected her facial muscles and hampered her ability to sleep even further. In an attempt to get her serotonin levels balanced, Dr. Nashatizadeh changed her medications. By the three week follow-up visit, the numbness was gone. Plus, she has not had a migraine since.
“He is a really, really good doctor,” says Laura. “I feel better educated about my condition and I understand my symptoms and why they happen. And to go a month without a migraine after all these years is an incredible relief!”