Ability to work

Hi, can I ask how everyone goes on at work? I’ve been doing ‘modified duties’ since April and haven’t managed to do a full days work. I struggle in every day and leave at lunchtime. Is this normal? Are employers sympathetic and supportive? I am getting quite worried now as I don’t see the neurologist until Dec and the GP took me off pizotifen (it wasn’t working anyway). He says to stay off meds until I’ve seen a consultant so I know there’s no chance of any improvement until Dec at the earliest!

I also feel really anxious and have been suffering from panic attacks (never suffered with this before problems started in April) my GP has put me forward for CBT which starts middle of Nov. Would you guys recommend that I have some medication for anxiety or do I just stick it out? Any advice on if it will “take the edge off”.

I’m following the MAV survival guide in terms of caffeine/choc etc, but have seen no improvement in the 3 weeks I’ve been doing it.
I still can’t believe how ill I feel all the time; I get very few days when I feel “ok”. Any advice would be gratefully received.

I’m not sure what your doc’s logic is in not giving you any medication - many here get good results on anti-anxiety meds (Klonopin / Xanax / Valium) when symptoms are really bad - some of the others have more experience so would be able to tell you more.

Hang in there!

PS. have you tried any vitamins e.g. B2, Magnesium, CoQ10?

All this stuff can easily cause you to have panic attacks. Too bad your doctor doesn’t want you to take anything for the anxiety though I can understand his logic. Valium or one of it’s relatives would most likely help to take the edge off both the anxiety and the dizzy/vertigo feelings. Have you considered taking something like meclizine? Or maybe one of the allergy meds - those work in the brain the same way that meclizine does.

I do work full time and some days it is very difficult to get through. Most people I work with aren’t aware of my situation and those that do know, don’t realize how bad I feel at times as I tend to hide it and not talk about it. My job is extremely busy and there is lots of time pressure on me. That actually helps me get through. But enough about me. Sounds like you have things worse than I do and therefore there is no comparing how you cope at work to how I cope.

Are you on a cancellation list for your doctor? It certainly would be nice if you can get in sooner.


Hi guys, thanks for the replies - I’ve been out today and brought magnesium, B2 and COQ10. The lady in the shop said they’re best taken at lunchtime so I’ll start them tomorrow.
In relation to cancellations I’m not sure how that works on the NHS, but I’m going to ring them on Monday to just see if thats possible.
Thanks for your support

Hi Tracey,

I think work is a really tough one and it’s so hard to compare from person to person - it’s totally dependant on your symptoms, the job you do, your hours/shift pattern and even the journey to work. I work in a busy intensive care unit, nice big room, fleuorescent lights, shiny floors, lots of noise, unpredictable hours/breaks and the need to be able to react quickly when the shit hits the fan. Stress instantly makes my symptoms ten times worse so I just don’t feel that I can safely be at work at the moment. That in itself however is hugely isolating, not to mention the additional financial pressures that will soon result.

I suppose what I’m trying to say is, don’t feel guilty about what you can or can’t do or feel the need to compare yourself to others. If work are being understanding and you’re managing to cope with the current revised duties then it may be worth persevering in order to keep some kind of routine and to keep your salary coming in. Once you’re seen by neurology, assuming they start you on drug therapy, you may find that you have periods of time where the side effects make you feel worse before making you better and you may find you really need to take sick leave then. However if you’re really not coping with the current situation and you do financially have the option of not working for a while then there’s certainly no shame in that. It’s a horrible condition and working whilst feeling so ill can be an awful, soul destroying thing to put yourself through.

You say you’re waiting for an NHS appt, can i ask where you’re being seen?. It would certainly be worth contacting them if you’re available for a short notice appt and asking them to contact you in event of a cancellation. It may also be worth asking if they have any migraine info for GP’s (The National gave me some stuff to pass on to mine) - if you’re a definite migraneur and the only drug you’ve tried is pizotifen (this may not be the case) then it certainly sounds like your GP should be trying you on something else whilst you’re waiting. Each clinic will have their favs so it would be good to get their specific GP info if they produce any.


I think what Dizzi has said here is right on the money. I work a full time position but for the most part I’m sitting at a desk, have to make a trip in a car somewhere, or chair meetings. In my previous life during undergrad years I used to work in a very bus kitchen where we’d turn over $4000/hour in sales. It was madness. If I had to work in that sort of place now, I doubt I would last one hour. It was high energy and high stress and hot in there. The noise and madness of it all would likely finish me off.


Hi Tracey

I am also in the same boat as you are. I have been living with these migrianes now for a little over a year and a half. On and off of work, i have recently just changed positions to something less stressfull, and with less hours, however, i am now in the middle of an attack, where i am dizzy all the time. I am now going to have to take another sick leave and it doesnt look good for me. My company insurance as well as my company are growing very frustrated with me because there is no known medical proof that i have these vestibular migraines, so for the insurance company there is no reason why i should be paid to stay home. However, it is hard to prove that you are constantly dizzy. So i am here to say, i feel the frustrations that you are feeling. How can we prove to work that this is really happening to us…

Hi Tracey,

I use to work for the phone company and made good money, but for the last 10 years or so i work part-time as a Substitute working with Mentally Challenged Adults. If i have a bad couple of days all i have to do is call in and leave a message for my boss that i won’t be coming in. The negative side to that is you don’t get paid for the days you take off. But this works for me having this monster dizzy condition. I use to make good money with Pac Bell but…luckily my partner has a good paying job. This condition also occasionally brings on panic attacks. Too much stimula can set them off.


Thanks for the replies - at least I’m not alone. My job is a firefighter!!! Obviously there is no way I can do that at the moment. Luckily, I was already having a spell off the fire engines working in the community/education. However, I do have to maintain ‘competence’ as a firefighter as I could be called back at anytime. I do love my job and hope to be fully fit at some point - don’t know how long work will let me keep doing just what I can.
Dizzi - I was desperate to see Dr Silver - I rang private, but he had no free sessions until Jan 11. So the NHS have me a slot on 2nd December at Warrington (apparently he works for there too). I’m going to ring them and ask about cancellations today, but I’m also slightly concerned that sometimes on NHS you don’t see the consultant named on your appointment and I’m travelling there as it’s him I want to see. My GP didn’t want to try me on anything else - he just said wait for consultant!
I do have to say that the last 3 days have been my best for a long time - I’ve been at around 70% for 3 days in a row!!! This has never happened before. Don’t know if it’s the chocolate/caffeine free existence (just over 2 weeks for that now).
Take care all x