A reporter at the local paper summarized Karen’s story as: “Karen’s first-hand account of her illness gave an honest, heart-wrenching depiction of what it is like to live with debilitating pain day-to-day.”
For nearly 25 years, I watched my wife Karen struggle with nearly constant head pain to be relieved only by laying down, a loss of friends and a family that did not believe her.
I was at times frustrated by lack of support from the medical community. As I explain in The Karen Paddock Story on Pain Nation:
After many years of her own research, Karen suspected her diagnosis to be a spinal CSF leak so she sought treatment from the best physicians in the field. In the end, Karen took her own life when the treatments did not stop her pain; it is my belief that fluoroquinolone antibiotics (Cipro, Levaquin and 20 other names) and steroid use complicated her treatments.
It is my conjecture that these antibiotics are why none of the treatments worked for Karen. Over a dozen people have now told me that their CSF Leaks started from two weeks to one year after taking Cipro or Levaquin. There is currently ZERO research on this. I will be addressing this at the first ever CSF Leak Symposium.
Sometimes we choose our mission in life, other times it chooses us. I have become very active in the medical community in raising awareness of Intracranial Hypotension due to Cerebrospinal Fluid (CSF) Leaks. A condition that is more common that many think (for example Actor George Clooney had/has a CSF Leak and considered suicide), yet is so unknown that some doctors argue the condition does not even exist.
To raise awareness and to attract research dollars, I initially collected her writings into a web site kpaddock.com and then into a book. We must lose no one else to suicide due to this condition. I had hoped Karen would be the last, sadly, this is not the case.