Self-Pay for Oxygen

If you do create your own setup, you will need to purchase a regulator appropriate for the tank you are using. Different tank types use different regulators due to tank pressures. 0-25 lpm regulators for E tanks are readily available online. In addition to this, you will need to purchase a mask and oxygen hose (clear tubing).

Welder's O2 – A Last Resort

If you are not currently under medical care, it is feasible to get oxygen directly from a reputable oxygen supplier. Welding oxygen is also pure and typically comes from the same source as medical oxygen. The key difference between medical and non-medical oxygen relates more to the chain of custody of the oxygen tank (cylinder) and requirements regarding purging the tank prior to filling. You can always ask your oxygen supplier to purge your tanks before filling.

Setting up Your Oxygen

Setting up your tank properly is important to avoid any errant spillage of oxygen. The simple solution is checking your setup before opening the valve to make sure all hose connections are tight and that your regulator is firmly attached to the cylinder. Then open the tank valve slowly and set the regulator at a low flow setting, ie. 5 lpm. Listen and feel for any leaks around the regulator and hose connections. If you hear oxygen leaking anywhere but at the mask itself, close the tank valve and correct it. When using oxygen, take extra care not to allow the oxygen to flow freely for any extended period. Always turn oxygen off at the tank valve, not with the regulator.

High Flow Oxygen

High-flow oxygen was proven to relieve cluster headache attacks within 15 minutes for nearly 80% of attacks with no serious side effects in a controlled clinical study (see the JAMA High-flow Oxygen Study). In fact, oxygen is considered to be the safest method of treating acute cluster headache attacks. The approach is to use 100% pure oxygen at a flow rate of 12-15 lpm, sometimes higher, through a non-rebreather mask for approximately 15 minutes or until the attack is stopped. Although that sounds pretty straightforward, learning how to use high-flow oxygen for quick relief takes some know how and practice. On this page, we describe how to get it, how to use it, and how to be safe with oxygen in the home.

Social Security Disability

There are two disability programs available through the Social Security Administration: Social Security Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income. SSDI is paid for by you through your payroll deductions. SSI is a program managed by the Social Security Administration that makes payments to people with low income who are age 65 or older, are blind, or have a disability. SSI is funded from the general government budget. Do not confuse SSI with SSDI – they are entirely different programs.

Private Disability Insurance

There are many types of private disability insurances that may be purchased by individuals or by companies on behalf of employees as a component of their benefits package. For example, if you are a sole proprietor of your own business, you may purchase Key Person disability insurance or Business Overhead Expense insurance to ensure that operations are maintained should you become disabled. Short-term disability insurance policies are typically held by larger companies on behalf of their employees so they may cover employee income should the employee become temporarily disabled due to an injury or illness incurred off the job. Long-term disability insurance held by an individual or through a company plan is designed to cover a portion of employee income should you become disabled for an indefinite period of time beyond the term of any existing short-term disability plan. Long-term disability plans may be effective for a couple of years or up to retirement age.

Is Cluster Headache a Disability?

Cluster headaches can be very debilitating and at some point you may begin to question whether or not it makes sense to continue working. Generally speaking, episodic cluster headaches would not qualify as a disability in the eyes of the government, but they may justify a short-term leave from work. Chronic cluster headaches that have endured for a year or more and are debilitating may justify a longer absence from work or even full disability.

Cluster Headache Patient Guide

Welcome to our New Patient Guide, where you will learn what cluster headache is, how it is diagnosed & treated, and what you can do to manage this painful condition.  You’ll quickly discover there is no “silver bullet” to stop the pain of cluster headaches. In fact, in many cases it takes so long to come to a diagnosis that you may have already been through several drug trials with your physician or neurologist in order to rule out other maladies. This is not at all surprising because cluster headaches are a primary headache type. In order to diagnose a primary headache type, your doctor must first rule out secondary headache types, including headaches caused by trauma, lesion, or tumor. This is for your safety, but it can certainly be frustrating going through the various diagnostics with no real pain relief.

Anti-inflammatory Protocol: Safety

This regimen is generally quite safe and well tolerated with many potential health benefits. However, some physicians and cluster headache patients may be concerned about the apparent “high” dose of vitamin D3. There are several studies that have clinically proven that the skin of a fair skinned adult clad in a bathing suit without sun block and exposed to the sun’s UVB at midday, can generate 10,000 – 15,000 I.U. vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol) in as little as 15 minutes.

Anti-inflammatory Protocol: Interactions and Contraindications

Reactions to vitamin D3 are very rare as skin exposed to the UVB in direct sunlight produces vitamin D3 naturally. It is generally considered to be one of the safest vitamin supplements you can take. However, if you are allergic to sunlight, do not start this regimen without contacting your PCP or neurologist first. If you experience a reaction to this regimen including and not limited to, an upset stomach for more than a day, swelling in and around the mouth or face, or an obvious allergic reaction, discontinue the entire regimen and contact your family physician. The best course of action if this occurs is to start taking the vitamin D3 and if there’s no reaction, add each of the other supplements one at a time, every 3 to 4 days to use the process of elimination to determine what is actually causing the reaction.