Share Your Voice
More than 38 million people in the United States have migraine disease – 12% of the population. Below are some of their stories.




Despite living with chronic pain, Jessica is high functioning, active in volunteer work and the lives of her family. She is working to become certified as a personal trainer in hopes of helping others function with chronic pain. She finds temporary relief from her headaches in aerobic and resistance workouts. Jessica has learned many things from this disease, including how to take life hour by hour instead of looking at the whole day or whole week ahead of her. She focuses on the task at hand, though everyday is a constant mental battle of just trying to get through the day.

Jessica’s husband of 18 years and her children have also learned many things from this experience. They are hoping for the right solution to heal her, and are continually adjusting to find ways to better support her. She now realizes all that she took for granted in being pain free and is optimistically searching for a solution with the help of Dr. Dan Henry.

I was 18 when I had my first migraine. I remember thinking that something was wrong with my vision. Little did I know that this was the beginning of a lifelong journey. For the most part, my migraines did not interfere with college life. The first year after I graduated I had a headache everyday. Literally EVERYDAY. A neurologist told me I needed to strengthen the muscles in my back. That was the first in a long line of “cures.” Physical therapy, Topamax, two hours in the doctor’s office for DHE injections, ER visits (“No, I’m not a drug seeker, I have a damn migraine!), PFO repair to my heart, Botox …

All of this finally led me to the most caring and compassionate person on my long road to treatment: Dr. Henry. He literally saved me from having a migraine every day. Now I have a mix of nerve blocks, magnesium drips, Botox and rescue meds and have a migraine 1-2 times a week. It is a daily struggle. When I think, “Maybe today is a good day and I won’t have migraines anymore,” one comes along and wipes me out. It’s hard to explain the pain you feel to coworkers, friends, loved ones, your spouse. It’s not “just a headache,” “no, I’m not flaking out on you,” “it’s not you, it’s me.” You feel unreliable, tired, waiting for the next shoe to drop. I’m hopeful though. I see that more and more treatments have become available in the past 5 years, than in the previous 20. Thank you to Dr. Henry for fighting so hard for his migraine patients!

My migraines became chronic when I was pregnant with my first child. They have been difficult to manage for the past 6 years. My daily routine is based upon what may or may not trigger a migraine. How and what I eat, drink, sleep, exercise, nap, weather, and stress levels all contribute. This disease has altered how I am as a wife, mother, and friend.

My guilt eats at me as I have to explain to my 6 year old why I’m napping or telling my husband I can’t go in a hike. Dr. Henry has given me hope that I can get through this disease with medical help. I’m comforted he is there and understands.

I have battled migraines for 27 years. The past six years my migraine disease crescendoed to the point where it was not a question of if my head hurt, but how bad. Migraines contributed to a neurological incident that left me unable to walk, sit up or stand. I was not able to drive or take care of my children for two and a half excruciating years. I had to re-learn to walk. I spent a total of five and a half weeks away from my family while admitted to a special treatment hospital for headaches in Chicago.

Thanks to Dr. Dan Henry’s expert care and compassion we were finally able to have another miracle baby join our family following a six year wait.

Dr. Henry has helped me through my darkest and most hopeless times. He treated me week after week with a passion and concern I have not otherwise experienced. He has restored me to a level of functioning I have not had for years.

I have suffered with chronic migraines for most of my life. They are debilitating to say the least. My vision will get really blurry, any noise becomes almost unbearable and I am frequently nauseated (besides feeling like my head is going to explode any minute!)

I feel like I have missed out on so many fun times with family and friends because I am not feeling well. When my little 3 year old proudly came upstairs and handed me his first ice pack he made for mom all by himself – I wanted to cry. It puts into perspective how this affects my family.

I am thankful for all of the treatments currently available, but I wish there was more understanding from the public. When I would rather have shots into the base of my skull and around my head than feel the pain, that should be a great example of how bad a migraine feels. I am so thankful to Dr. Henry and the staff at Foothill Family Clinic for taking care of me and my family (many of whom also have migraines). Let’s spread some awareness and promote understanding about migraines and what we go through on a daily basis!

Debilitating, that is the best word I can use to describe my life with migraines. Living my life day to day becomes such a struggle when a migraine comes into the picture. I can’t play with my daughter or help her with her homework, I can’t accomplish my to do list, work becomes a bigger stress because they only see me as someone with a headache. Having a migraine becomes a world full of can’ts!!

Even those I love start doubting me, wondering how I can really be in this much pain with a headache. So, I doubt myself, I feel like a burden, I feel like I am too much for everyone else, it gets exhausting and I am already exhausted from the pain! It’s a vicious cycle, one that I hope to end. Thank you Dr. Dan Henry for giving me hope, and more pain free days, so I can live a more normal life.

When I’m out in public I always try to be put together. The hours, days, or weeks spent battling migraine are not seen. The constant pain where I’m sensitive to the slightest touch is invisible. The agony and stolen moments from a sickness I cannot control and struggle to predict are hidden. At times I might appear lazy but the truth is quite the opposite, I’m fighting a battle that few can see.
I’m 18 years old. I’ve been suffering with chronic migraines for six years, but didn’t know it wasn’t normal until three years ago. Until then, I thought it was normal to have headaches everyday, some debilitating. I thought everyone felt like I did and suffered the same kind of pain. When I realized they didn’t, my world changed drastically. I saw why people looked at me funny when I talked about my pain and why they reacted so much when I said I got a headache everyday. I realized why I was so surprised whenever people told me they only got headaches once or twice a year. I thought they were superhuman.

Migraines have taken away my ability to be in noisy situations. Migraines have taken away my willingness to travel by plane, because the altitude and tight space makes my head feel like it’s near exploding. Migraines have decreased my school performance as well as attendance, and now work performance. It has decreased my motivation and made me want to do nothing but sleep. Migraines have limited my ability to be social, physically active, and do things I want to do. Migraines have given me mood swings that make people like me less, and instead have to learn to tolerate me. Migraines have decreased my self-esteem and self-worth, as well as increased my depression immensely. But I will never stop looking for a solution because I know I’m not the only one. And migraines are more than serious; they’re a disabling disease. They took away my ability to be a normal teenage girl even though I look it on the outside.

I am a mother, a wife, a daughter, a friend, and someone that suffers from migraine headaches. It is often frustrating and upsetting trying to be a good wife, friend, and especially a mom when you cannot even get out of bed from the pounding in your head or the constant nausea. It prevents me from getting healthy and having an active lifestyle.

So many people do not understand how debilitating migraines can be. Dr. Henry helps me get closer to becoming the mom, wife, and friend that I want to be. I will be forever grateful to him and his efforts to help those in need.

Donna’s migraines began when she was in middle school, but remained undiagnosed until her junior year in college, in part because her family failed to recognize that her headaches weren’t just something to “get over.” She persevered through her pain to become a debate champion, National Honors Society member in high school and received Dean’s List and Mortar Board recognition at Northwestern University while earning Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees. The impact of the migraines on her life was profound.

Donna was finally diagnosed during her junior year of college. Fighting nausea along with the pain was a lifelong challenge, and finding sustainable pain relief was a futile search. Ultimately Imitrex provided some relief, but it became available only a few years prior to her contracting breast cancer, too late in her life to significantly alter her course. She spent much of her adult life in pain and depressed. Her ability to function was always a factor in planning family activities. Many were cancelled, or, more likely, determined to be unsafe to plan. Perhaps her greatest disappointment was that her migraines kept her from establishing a speech pathology clinical practice, the work she overcame so much to qualify for. Her migraine-related depression accelerated after the children left for college. Migraines were a big factor in her delaying treatment for her breast cancer, which ultimately claimed her life.

One of the difficulties of having a chronic headache is keeping it a secret. Sharing the truth can lead to more pain, a personal weakness is exposed. Some friends and relatives incorrectly tell the sufferer the likely cause of the headache and what should be done next to cure it; they cast guilt. Spreading the news at work can be a costly mistake; bosses and colleagues see a handicap, opportunities are missed. One may feel as though they are living a lie, faking their feelings, not able to express the truth that they suffer.
Out of the five kids in my family, I was the lucky one, the one whose headaches were easily managed by ice, ibuprofen, sleep, and exercise…and then my luck ran out. In July 2015, my headache pattern changed. Not only did I have headaches when sleep deprived as a pediatrician, but I also had headaches after a great night’s sleep, during a relaxing day, while exercising, working, and out with friends. I felt betrayed by my body that had always allowed me to work crazy long hours, do fun activities, and enjoy life to its fullest.

I tried alternative therapies – massage, chiropractors, PT, TENS, elimination diets, meditation, yoga, but the headache frequency and intensity continued to increase. I stopped planning social events and travel. I cut back at work thinking work stress must be related to the migraines; however that month, I had migraines 28 of the 31 days. It was then that I finally realized I was just like my siblings – a chronic migraine sufferer, and I needed a migraine preventive, too. After some trial and error, we found a preventive and rescue regimen that works most of the time. I recently had 8 days in a row without headaches (AMAZING!) and then the following week had 5 days of headaches.

Though I strongly dislike having to take any medications, I realize that my new shelf full of headache medications is just the way it has to be for now. I am so grateful for the headache free times, and I work hard not to panic or become angry with myself when I realize a headache is starting. Though not at my “preheadache” level, the fun me is making a comeback!

I am a mother of 3, and I suffer from migraine disease! I have suffered for going on 8 years now. There are days when the pain is so unbearable that I cannot perform the simplest of tasks. To say that my migraines are debilitating would be an understatement. They are demoralizing, excruciating, incapacitating, and confining. They leave me feeling depressed and inadequate.

I am so grateful for the compassion of Dr. Henry and his devotion to curing this disease. He gives me hope that one day I might be able to live a normal life. That the pain will someday stop, and I can finally feel relief!

I have suffered with severe migraines since the age of 16, a time when little was known about how to treat migraines. As a teenager I endured severe pain, which usually arrived just in time for big events like parties or dances. As I entered college the pain was more frequent and affected studying, dating, and college exams. I was married at the age of 21, and I made it through three pregnancies with little relief from migraine pain, only being able to take Tylenol and a few times ending up in the hospital with morphine.

As I raised my kids there were many times when I had to call neighbors or friends to care for my children as lay in bed with a migraine. Now after turning 50, I suffer from chronic daily headaches as well as migraines. But I am a successful 3rd Grade teacher and despite daily headache pain, I rarely miss a day of school because of the advances in medications for migraines and because of Dr. Henry’s care.

My life and the lives of my three children, who also suffer from migraines, are not always easy. Migraines affect how we live, what we eat, and what activities we do. But we have great hope that our quality of life will continue to improve with more public awareness and greater medical advances.

I’ve suffered from migraines since I was a teenager; I am now 43. My life has revolved around how my head feels. It has only been in the past five years that I feel like I have had some type of “relief” and some hope.

I have missed more family events, social gatherings, and given up more work days due to migraines than I can count. I have spent endless days in a dark room pushing on the pain in my head praying it would vanish to no avail.

It took me YEARS to find a doctor who finally took the time to help! He understood my migraines and understood migraines are a serious, serious disease. It is only because of Dr. Henry, I continue to improve and continue to survive one more day with migraines.

Migraines and the plague they are need much, much more awareness and attention. We cannot continue the way we are without the continuing support of those health care professionals like Dr. Henry. We cannot survive without them, literally!

My husband and I moved to Park City because we love the outdoors. We wanted to raise our family to play together! We use to ski and bike and hike and go camping. I worked as a children’s therapist at a shelter because I wanted to make a difference in this world.

When I started getting headaches 10 years ago we thought I had a brain tumor or some horrible cancer, I couldn’t believe the pain could be so bad. I went to multiple doctors. I have had allergy shots, sinus surgery, tubes put in my ears, tubes taken out of my ears, acupuncture, chiropractors, hormone treatments, multiple drugs with multiple side effects, multiple injections in multiple places, including 32 shots in my head, all to no avail. I still have migraines. I can’t go skiing or biking or hiking or camping because if my heart rate increases, I get a migraine. I still work some days as a children’s therapist, but I can’t be depended on. I never know when it will hit. I spend most of my time lying down with ice on my head. I just want my life back.

I started getting migraines when I was 15, and they’ve slowly become more frequent and aggressive over the years. I’m now 34. My migraines are a constant companion, a part of me I have to think about multiple times per day, even when I don’t have one. I could trigger one at any moment… don’t eat that food, don’t work out too hard, don’t over heat, don’t get too stressed, don’t get sick, don’t leave without your pills, get enough sleep, it’s raining today, etc. When I do have one, they are all encompassing and life literally sometimes has to stop. I can’t be talked to, moved, need the dark and silence, and can never sleep it off, but just lay there until it eases.

I’m lucky to be self employed, else I may very well be unemployable. That doesn’t always mean I can go lay down and relax when one comes on. Often, I have to suffer through them, and when they come on multiple days at a time, depression starts to sink in. It’s really hard living and working through pain. They affect my personality, my relationships, my livelihood and my hope. I know I’m still “me” when they’re less frequent, but when I’m in fog of 10-15 plus migraines per month, I feel like I go away for a while and lose myself in the misery of feeling awful. When people say they get migraines, my heart aches for them. I am desperate for a cure so I can be the happy, successful, driven person that I am when I feel okay.

I have fought chronic migraine disease since ten days before my 16th birthday. I remember the start of an illness so clearly, but it was a change that has impacted every aspect of my life. It took three months to get an accurate diagnosis as the migraine raged on causing pain, nausea, sensitivity to light and sound and many missed school days. In the twelve years I have battled this disease, there have been many struggles. I was able to get a bachelor’s degree with support from the university’s disability center, but was forced to forfeit my position in a fully funded Masters/PhD program, and take two and a half years off to focus on stabilizing my health.

However, there are more things to be thankful for in my life than I can count: my family, students, and Dr. Henry. My family has made great sacrifices to help me survive this disease; their prayers and encouragement have been key to keeping me here on this Earth. I am able to work again and my job gives me a sense of purpose and great satisfaction. My students give me hope that future generations will have more compassion and awareness of migraine disease. In this photo, I am with a small group of my kindergarten through third graders, all of whom have at least one parent who experiences migraine disease. My students question why I often wear a hat and two pairs of sunglasses, my FL-47s and regular wraparound sunglasses, indoors. They wonder what color my eyes are. They exclaim how beautiful I look on the rare occasion that I might take my glasses off. Please do not take for granted your ability to make good eye contact with others.

I have been suffering from Chronic Migraine Disease for 4 years. I couldn’t get out of bed for 6 months and could hardly function for about 10 months. I had to postpone my education, miss out on family and social activities, and give up my hobbies. I visited many different doctors, had multiple MRI’s, and even spent three months in physical therapy hoping I had a neck injury. No one could tell me what was wrong or how to fix it. There were days when I thought I would have to live with the excruciating pain for the rest of my life. Not to mention the emotional pain, which was at times worse than the physical.

Eventually, I found Dr. Henry and have since been able to manage my migraines. I was able to graduate from Utah Valley University last month and am currently applying for graduate school. I got married two years ago and enjoy many of the hobbies and activities I once had to miss out on. I still suffer from migraines but have learned how to take care of myself. I now know that I can live a full, happy, and migraine managed life.

For too long, headache has been the dominant factor in my life. Not the most important thing in my life; that would be my family. Headache disease influences every facet of my life. Every day I awake either with a headache, or wondering how long it will be before that big shoe drops on me.

I have learned to avoid some activities. But I also decide that quite a few others are worth it. I love to play sports with my grandsons, and wrestle with them on the floor. I love to fish, hunt, camp, drive our ski boat for my family. All of these things are worth it to me because they make me happy. My family doesn’t understand my headaches, but they know they are real, and are understanding if I don’t participate.

I am one of the lucky ones among those afflicted with headache disease. Dr. Henry has taught me so much about my headache, and has helped me manage them and handle the pain. He has given me tools with which I live a happy, productive life. I do have some days without headache, at least at a low enough pain level that for me it is a good day. I’ll sometimes string together 2 to 4 or even 5 days like that when I don’t need to take medication. If you didn’t know me well, you would probably not even know that I deal with this health issue. I know there are many who suffer much more than I do with headaches. All things considered, I have to say, like the stick-figure logo on T-shirts and hats states, that “Life Is Good”.

My migraines started when I was around 16, and just getting into high school. I was getting a migraine almost every day, 25-30 a month. It was really discouraging because I had worked so hard in school taking AP classes, playing soccer and varsity basketball, and joining student government. It was hard when my migraines hit. I had to make major changes in order to focus on how to deal with my migraines. I had to quit basketball and struggled to barely get my credits to graduate.

Through this whole ordeal I was lucky I found Dr. Henry! He was the one who said I would get through it and never stopped believing in me. He has been patient, kind and understanding in helping me find ways to treat my migraines. He was right, and although it has been overwhelmingly hard, I got through it! I am currently on Botox and now only get 1-2 migraines a month! It has been such an amazing change. I am now able to work as a nanny for four kids, and am in college full time. I never thought I’d be here 5 years ago. I finally have my life back.

I’ve had chronic migraines for the past four years. Migraines affect nearly every aspect of my life. I live life at a slower pace than my peers, which has been a difficult adjustment. At the age of 23, I’m still dependent upon my parents, still at university, and still have headaches everyday. However, if given the chance, I don’t think I would trade away these four years. While I have had really rough days (sorry, mom and dad), I have learned to treat others with compassion and empathy, I am learning that God accepts and is pleased with my capabilities, as limited as they currently are, and that God is so much more merciful than we think He is. A big, big thank you to Doctor Henry and his family, my parents, Russell and Angie, and my grandparents for their love and compassion.
My migraine disease has affected my life in two ways.

1. It has been disabling. I have missed out on a bit of life. I haven’t been able to be the person that I believe I think I could be. I am tired of telling people I cannot attend “because I have a migraine.” I miss work. I cannot hold down a job. I am depressed.

2. I am compassionate. I live life to the fullest when I can. I am a good listener. I am patient. I have a soft heart and charity for those who live with chronic pain. I don’t think I would trade this trial, because it makes me who I am, a tender and benevolent person.

Rebecca started having migraines at the age of 8. She persevered in spite of the pain and nausea, performing brilliantly academically and in the theater. Yet the intrusion of the migraines was undeniable, and by her senior year in college had become stronger than her will to perform.

Becky also suffered from bipolar disorder, which was undiagnosed until she was a senior. Her mother’s death sent her into a 10-year tailspin during which time she couldn’t work, and suffered both from almost constant migraines and reactions to meds prescribed for the bipolar disorder. In 2012, Becky was offered an entry-level job at Western Governors U, and with the support of an understanding supervisor excelled through 2013. This came at a price as her use of NSAIDS, anti-nausea drugs, and prescribed narcotics had begun to affect her general health.

On August 10, 2014, Becky was admitted to the Diamond Headache Clinic in hopes that the specialists could come up with a management plan. During her stay, she suffered from at least a level 7 migraine every day. By August 20, her doctor determined that they had done what they could and that she could go home. The next day she developed a fever and died due to a very rare reaction to haldol, neuroleptic malignant syndrome. No matter what we did, the presence of the migraines threatened her capacity to function, her happiness, her goals, and her very life. In the end, the migraines took it all.

I’m a 30 year old wife and mother of 2 young children. Migraines affect my life greatly causing lost time with my beautiful family. With the help of Dr. Henry, I have been able to control them much better. I have never had a doctor so passionate about helping me find a solution to my debilitating migraines.

I have been to many doctors to help with my migraines for 10 + years. During my first visit to Dr. Henry, I was so impressed by the care I received. I hope this helps others – you are doing great things. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Britten is a 24 years old and has had many diagnoses since early childhood. She screamed and acted out so severely she was placed in a behavior disorder program in spite of our repeated objections. It was obvious that Britten could not attend school. She was diagnosed with Autism due to her extreme reaction to noise, touch, strong lighting and general chaos of a school environment.

During 9th grade, she began screaming, “Help me, help me!” The doctors had no explanation for her inability to eat, attend school, socialize, sleep or learn. The doctors recommended that she be placed in a medical coma long enough to give her body a rest. They were not confident that they could bring her back out of the coma and our family declined this advice.

One year ago, we met with Dr. Henry. Britten had a pain disorder, and he had many options to help her improve the quality of her life. Within 2 minutes of a nerve block, she said, “I have never felt this way. My head has always had stabbing pain like ice-picks going through my brain non-stop day and night.” When I asked why she didn’t describe her headaches to anyone, she said she thought everyone felt this way and they handled it fine. She thought she was weak.

I will be indebted to Dr. Henry forever. Britten is in physical therapy, exercising and practicing for the Ice-skating Olympics. She has hope for her future. She is planning to work. Dr. Henry and his remarkable staff gave Britten a quality of life that most of us take for granted.

My children and I get migraines. Unfortunately I have passed these down to my children. I inherited migraines from my father who got them from his mother. I started getting these as a child and have had them since. I now watch my children struggle and suffer from this same disabling disease.

I am so grateful for Dr. Henry and the help he has given to my children and myself. He is a great man and so kind to my children, they think he is pretty great.

At 17 the sky wasn’t the limit, it was the starting place for me. I thought my body, and mind where invincible. My dream life took a backseat on June 3rd, 2012. I started feeling overheated, which was unusual for me. My body was sweating, I was shivering; my head was pounding, my left side was numb and tingling and I had blurry vision. I went to the hospital and was diagnosed with heat stroke and they sent me home with Vicoden. The symptoms did not subside. After seeing countless doctors and having thousands of tests, I was diagnosed with Complex and Hemiplegic Migraines. My senior year was vastly different from anyone else I know. I was so hypersensitive that really anything could make my migraine worse. Towards the end of the year, I began to get better because I learned my triggers, and found the right medications and treatments. I started college at Westminster so that I could stay close to my family and doctors.

I excelled my freshman year, and I was stage manager for the theater department. I was taking care of myself by taking my medications and sleeping 10 hours. Sophomore year I overcommitted myself and started getting sick again, missing the entire year of school. I cut as much stress out of my life as possible, and after a few struggles, I finally finished my sophomore year. I have learned a lot about my body, but the biggest thing I have learned is that being a migraineur is walking a tightrope that is constantly changing.

I have had migraines my entire life. At 19 they became more frequent. At 23, I gave birth to my son, and began having 3 migraines per month. It was really disrupting my life. In 1995, I was 28 years old, working as an RN on a surgical floor. I had a migraine that did not respond to Tordol, and I felt like I might die. The pain had not decreased; I had a rapid heart rate, shortness of breath and extremely high blood pressure when I finally sought help in the ER. I felt like I could have had a stroke if I hadn’t sought treatment.

At 36, it was no longer a question if my head hurt, but a constant question of, “How bad is my head hurting right now?” I avoided daylight, extreme heat, direct sunlight, and noisy restaurants. My job required travel, which was difficult, and I became increasingly neurotic about my medications. By 47, it was rare that I did much more than work and go home. I had a headache for about 16 straight years. I was miserable and almost hopeless. Although my son was an adult, giving up completely was not an option.

Dr. Henry changed my life, which is an understatement. For the first time in 15 years, I came away knowing I was going to get the best treatment available. Nine months later, we found a combination of treatments that worked – it was nothing short of miraculous!

I am 50 and continue to do well, traveling, enjoying my weekends with family and friends and working. I am so grateful for the care and compassion of Dr. Henry.

For as long as I can remember I have had a headache every day of my life. I have gone to numerous doctors and specialists who would write me off almost immediately when I would tell them about my headaches. I went to a cardiologist and they found a hole in my heart, and I was excited because I finally had an answer!
Who gets excited about heart surgery?

It was not until recently when I went to Dr. Henry that I was informed that I have chronic migraines. Every day. I am a mom and a wife and have the most patient husband and children. My children are missing out because I don’t have the energy to play with them after I have worked all day plus fought a migraine all day. It breaks my heart every day that I am not able to be the person I want to be. Dr. Henry is the first doctor who wants to figure out what works for my migraines and get me the relief I have searched years for and in turn give my family the mother and wife they deserve.