I also have terrible headaches almost daily...and although many of them don't feel like full-blown migraines, I have had success with Imitrex and a couple of the other class called Triptans. Not sure whether you all have tried that.
I've also used Ultram, both the regular and Extended-Release versions. It was really, really effective and worked quite well for me in combination with my preventatives. At the least, it would keep my headaches at such a low level that I COULD function. Usually it would take them away completely. However, after about 3 years of using it, I feel it has lost some of its ability to fight my headaches. Worth a try for those who have not been on it though!!!
On Friday, September 25th, 2009 my 43 year old wife Karen got a headache that quickly progressed into the first migraine of her life. By the following Monday, I had taken her into the emergency room for the first time when her migraine reached a six on a pain scale of 1-10. It is now the beginning of December and she has had this one continuous migraine headache for more than two months, usually at a pain level of 3 to 5!
A little history… about one week before this all started, my wife had what our primary care physician diagnosed as a viral infection. She was also taking Trazadone and Budeprion at the time, which she had started approximately two weeks before the migraine began and has since stopped taking the Trazadone as of October 16th and the Budeprion as of November 23rd. It is still too soon to see if the Budeprion is a contributing factor. It should also be noted that Karen started her period on September 25th, the same day the migraine started.
The first time Karen was in the emergency room, they diagnosed her as having a cluster migraine. The hospital sent her on her way, but by the next weekend she was seen in the ER again and this time was admitted.
She has been seen by a neurologist, as well as by the Medical Director of the Mercy Health Research and Ryan Headache Center. A question came up a few weeks ago about whether or not Karen had an MRI and spinal tap. The doctor seemed surprised that she had not; only a CT scan. We were told that the MRI would have only been ordered if the CT scan would have shown an abnormality… is the MRI/spinal tap something that should be done to rule something/anything out? I’m also wondering if this headache may be more “physical”, i.e. a pinched nerve, etc? Karen started seeing a chiropractor a couple of weeks ago, and his treatments give her a little relief.
The doctors are continuing to prescribe preventative medications for her head, but if the headache NEVER goes away, are the preventatives doing any good? In your experience, what is the worst case scenario that Karen is facing… we have come to terms that this headache may last the rest of her life (by which she is very depressed about), but could it be something worse?
The prescriptions that the doctors currently have Karen on are Piroxicam 20mg, Methocarbamol 750mg, Clonazepam 0.5mg, and Topiramate 25mg. As I mentioned, until November 23rd, she was also taking Budeprion XL 150mg. The doctor replaced the Budeprion with Cymbalta. Karen can take Maxalt-MLT 10mg for the very severe headaches. Additionally, she is taking magnesium supplements and 5-HTP. She is also taking Lipitor 20mg to keep her cholesterol under control. Light definitely makes the headache worsen as well as noise… We have not been able to determine if any foods, smells, etc. are affecting her adversely.
Karen has taken several other medications such as Frova (Frovatriptan), but it didn’t offer any relief. We have heard some information, and we are wondering if Imitrex would work, but her doctors have not prescribed it to her?
It should also be noted that around this same time, an 11cm (4.33 inch) cyst was found on my wife’s right ovary that was believed to possibly be cancerous. On October 27th, a total abdominal hysterectomy with bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy (TAH-BSO) was performed. The cyst was benign, which was the first piece of good news we had gotten in over a month.
To Styxmark: Sorry to hear your wife is having so many issues going on in her life. Has to be tough on you also.
Regards to the MRI and spinal tap. Definitely should have both done. The CT scan is more for structural issues and the MRI is more for soft tissues and for vessels. Sometimes they need to follow with a CT angio if the vessels on the MRI look to be abnormal. The spinal tap should be done form chemistry imbalance and also to see what the pressure is and to determine if there is a spinal leak or a small vessel leak in the brain. As far as the medications are concerned to take preventative medications it is a waste of time and money. The headache needs to break first before they will do any good. I went to two neurologists in my home town without success and then went to the medical university of South Carolina headache clinic without success. I have just recently been referred to Duke and their headache clinic where she finally diagnosed it as new persistant daily headache and the symptoms do fit. We have tried several medications to date without success, she is now talking about botox injections saying they have had considerable success with that. Should make me look younger anyway, ha ha.
Would strongly suggest you go to a university medical center where there is some research going on regarding headaches. Keep shopping for someone who can help. Medical science knows little about headaches. Hope she finds help and gets better
Post Edited (timur) : 12/29/2009 12:46:52 AM (GMT-7)
I AM LOOKING INTO THIS AS WELL, TO SEE IF IT IS DONE IN ONTARIO AND WHO CAN DO IT FOR ME. i HAVE ALSO HEARD THAT THE KETAMINE INFUSION WORKS AS WELL.
DID YOU GET ANY INFO FROM YOUR FRIEND? I WILL READ FURTHER DOWN THE POSTS IN CASE YOU DID ALREADY ANSWER ON THAT.
I AM READY TO TRY ANYTHING THAT WILL TAKE AWAY THIS DAILY HORRIBLE PAIN. IT'S VERY DIFFICULT TO LIVE WITH CONSTANT PAIN. WELL I WOULDN'T CALL IT LIVING WHAT I AM DOING RIGHT NOW. I HAVE LOST MY LIFE DUE TO THIS PAIN. THANKS FOR LISTENIN.