In April 2019, I began to experience symptoms similar to a sinus infection, including frontal head and eye pressure. Over the next few weeks my symptoms worsened, and they developed into nausea, weakness on one side of my body, confusion, loss of appetite, and the most prominent indication —the worst headache of my life!
A few days after these symptoms started, I woke up with double vision, and immediately went to the eye doctor, where he demanded that I get my head scanned within the next 48 hours.
I made a trip to the emergency room and after hours of waiting, numerous questions, and one MRI scan, I received the news shortly before midnight on March 14, 2019. The scan showed multiple blood clots in my brain, also known as cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (CVST).
After a short hospital stay, I was prescribed anticoagulants (blood thinners) for six months and discovered that estrogen-based birth control and long travel were two risk factors that contributed to my blood clot. Thankfully, by November 2019, my clots were completely gone, and the doctors did not find any known clotting disorders. I’m currently three years post diagnosis and I live a normal, healthy life.
My experience with blood clots changed everything for me. I’m more aware of what I put into my body. From this experience, I’ve learned to never doubt yourself, and if your body feels off, it likely is. I do believe I have a lot to learn along the way, so my advice to others is to research birth control options very thoroughly, and don’t ignore stroke-like symptoms.