Serene Branson Migraine Update
Recently, I told you about reporter Serene Branson's experience with a Migraine while she was live on air doing Grammy Award coverage. (See Serene Branson Had a Migraine, Not a Stroke.)
Yesterday evening, the resilient Branson was back on the air, covering the Oscars, without incident. This morning, on "The Early Show," Branson told co-anchor Chris Wragge,
"I've been fine. I went back to work this week for the first time, working my first full week. I started on Monday. A little tired, obviously, from everything that's gone on. But no, I've been great... On Monday ... I definitely had a little anxiety leading up, but once I got that first live shot under my belt, it was back on the saddle. Just like riding a bike again."
Branson said that she's been surprised by the support she's received from all over the world. She also reported that, like most Migraineurs, she doesn't know what to expect when it comes to future Migraines,
"The doctors said chances are not great that it would be a recurring problem for you. It could happen three or four times. Could happen ten, or maybe that was a one-time thing."
Also like many of us, she said,
"The doctor obviously said any change can trigger a migraine. So it was very important that I got a lot of sleep. That I tried to sleep as much as possible -- except for tonight -- I'll take a nap after this. But I ate regularly, kept my blood sugar level up. So I've been taking some vitamins to help me out just try and keep things regular."
Branson and her producers were concerned that she might have a Migraine again yesterday evening during the coverage of the Oscars. It speaks well of her producer and television station that they supported and trusted her to cover the Oscars so soon after her problem during the Grammy Awards. Branson said that both the field producer and the executive producer at the station were checking to see how she was and if she needed anything. They were supportive and encouraging.
There's an excellent video segment from the CBS news with Branson and Dr. Richard Lipton that explains what happened to Branson. You can view it on the CBS web site.
As difficult as it was for Branson to have the experience she did with her Migraine on-air during the Grammy Awards, it's turned out to be a positive one when it comes to raising public awareness about Migraine disease and its impact. Her on-air aphasia - inability to find and use the words she needed - very clearly demonstrated a fairly common Migraine symptom. This was undoubtedly the first time many people had seen something like this from a Migraine. Most likely, most people didn't even realize that a Migraine attack could cause such a thing to happen.
Ms. Branson's willingness to share her medical information with the press and discuss her experience have been very helpful both in helping understand some of what can occur during a Migraine attack and in demonstrating that people with Migraines can still function quite well in high profile, high stress professions.
CBS News. "Serene Branson finds 'uncomfortable' Oscar fame." The Early Show. CBSNews.com. February 28, 2011.
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