Question on prevenitive meds

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kitkat32
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2009
Total Posts : 106
   Posted 2/10/2010 9:14 AM (GMT -6)   
Good morning.

I was wondering if someone could tell me how long a preventive med usually take to kick in. I have been on the Nortriptyline for 8 days now and haven't noticed a change. My pain actually increased last night.

I have had this since November so I was really hoping it would work a little quicker...wishful thinking. I know if it's used for depression it takes several weeks to take effect but I didn't know if the same was true for headache prevention.

I haven't taking anything OTC in the last month to prevent rebound HA but I took some advil this morning. Really didn't do much but I thought it was worth the try.

I am new to this headache stuff. I use to get maybe 1 or 2 migraines a year and they would last about a day and a half and then be gone.

We don't think these are migraines...most likely chronic tension headache that turns into a migraine.

I have had all the usual testing. CT, MRI, MRA and MRV. My MRI shows a few white spots but not enough to be diagnosed with anything. I have had health problems for years but they never included this head pain. Everything else came out clean. I am also anemic and Vit. D is low so I take meds for that.

I usually am on the anxiety board because this has caused me to become rather down and anxious.

Sorry to vent, just looking for people who understand. I don't think others don't realize how much of an impact headaches have on ones life. I feel like my quality of life has gone right down the drain.

Any info and support would be greatly appreciated.

Blessings, kitkat

SmurfyShadow
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Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 2386
   Posted 2/10/2010 9:55 PM (GMT -6)   
Can be two weeks to a couple months. Also, if your in more pain, call your doctor
 
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DX: Wegener's Disease, Migraines, Diabetese Type II, PCOS, Lactose Intolerant, Benign Heart Murmer, Depression, Asthma, Asperger's Syndrome, Necrotizing Gramultous Inflamation in eye, A.D.D., Acid Reflux, Tumor Behind the Eye, Carpal Tunnel, Fibromyolgia, Clasterphobic, Arthritis
Medications:  Tri Nessa, Percocet, Metformin, Prilosec, Protonix, Zantac, Advair, Cingulair, Albuterol, Calcium + Vitamin D, Pro-Air, Pepcid, Rolaids, Zofran, Compuzeen, Refresh Plus Eye Drops  PRN: Epi-Pen, Albuterol Nebulizer, Benedryl
Undergoing Radiation Taking Lorazepam (Ativan) on Radiation Days


caligirl2001
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 197
   Posted 2/11/2010 1:34 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi kitkat,

I was prescribed Nortriptyline and verapamil last month. I originally went to the doctor because I was having 4-5 migraines per month for about 6 months. I had that many within 2 weeks of starting. I wound out the month with double my usual amount of migraines. I stopped the nortriptyline after 2 weeks because of adverse mental reactions to it, and I am off the verapamil as well. My doctor gave me some samples of Frova to try for now. We are looking at giving Topomax a try.

I can empathize with feeling like your life is on hold. My anxiety has also gone through the roof and I'm back on alprazolam while we try to get everything back in control. I am afraid to make plans most of the time because I worry I will have to cancel because of a migraine. It's stressful and exhausting, and has definitely taken a toll on my family.

I'm so sorry you are going through this, and I hope you are able to find something that helps you.
Fibromyalgia, High BP, Migraines, Cervical radiculopathy


kitkat32
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2009
Total Posts : 106
   Posted 2/11/2010 6:38 AM (GMT -6)   
Thank you both for your replies. I feel so hopeless right now because of all of this.

I just graduated nursing school and I can't even work. All I have ever wanted was to help other people and right now I can't even find help for myself.

It is so discouraging. I am been reading old posts on her about occipital neuralgia and I am wondering if that is what I can be suffering from. I get stabbing pains in the back of my head and then I am left with very tender spots below my occipital bone. The headache then stretches over top of head to the forehead and pain behind my eyes. I think I will bring that up at my next neuro appt.

Blessings, kitkat

kymark
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 86
   Posted 2/11/2010 8:11 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Kitkat,

I generally have tried to give preventives at least a month, if not 2-3 months. Some, like Topamax, take over 3 months to reach full effectiveness.

Talk to your doctor about what, if anything, you can take for the pain. I have tension-type headaches, rather than classic migraines, and fioricet usually helps me. The trick is making sure you don't get rebound from it, as it's worse than many OTCs. Most doctors will have you limit your intake of any abortive to 2-3 times per week. While that's not great for those of us with daily pain, but it's better than nothing. Like you, I've found OTC stuff worthless as far as my headaches go.

So, give Noratryptaline at least a few more weeks, but see about getting a pain reliever that works.

I totally agree with your comment about people not understanding how debilitating chronic headaches can be. I'm functional most days, but that's not to say I'm very productive.


Best of luck!

april417
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 204
   Posted 2/13/2010 9:19 PM (GMT -6)   
I totally agree with people not understanding how migraines can really affect you in ways nobody can relate to.  I was in the ER on Thurs because I was in so much pain that nothing I had at home would help.  They gave me Demoral which only made matter's worse.  I was so nauesa and the pain was so unbareable that I just wanted to die.
I have been on several medications and have not found any to work.  I currently get migraines about 3x's a week.  My migraines are mainlly in my tempels and behind my eyes.
I had many CT all came out normal and MRI and one MRA about 5 years ago which they said I had bascual migraines........I am seeing my doctor on tues and going to talk to him about going for another MRI since I haven't had one in a long time.
Sorry for going on and on but nobody at home understands my pain
Thanks for listening........
April
 
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kitkat32
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2009
Total Posts : 106
   Posted 2/14/2010 7:45 AM (GMT -6)   
I know how you feel April. I was in the ER 5 times between Thanksgiving and Christmas...including Thanksgiving night. They just drugged me up with narcotics. I left with the same pain I came in with each time...I was just so doped up.

Luckily they know me personally at my ER so I didn't get accused of being a drug seeker.

I think my new med is working. I had a pretty good day yesterday. My temple soreness is still there but that is tolerable.

Hopefully you will find something that helps you.

Blessings, kitkat

SmurfyShadow
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 2386
   Posted 2/14/2010 11:22 AM (GMT -6)   
I am very concerned with your pain. It scares me actually. It can be numerous things, as you know. I've had a really bad experience with sharp pain in my head, actually in my eye. It sounds like you need a neurologist though hon.
 
Smurfy Shadow/Desirèe 
DX: Wegener's Disease, Migraines, Diabetese Type II, PCOS, Lactose Intolerant, Benign Heart Murmer, Depression, Asthma, Asperger's Syndrome, Necrotizing Gramultous Inflamation in eye, A.D.D., Acid Reflux, Tumor Behind the Eye, Carpal Tunnel, Fibromyolgia, Clasterphobic, Arthritis
Medications:  Tri Nessa, Percocet, Metformin, Prilosec, Protonix, Zantac, Advair, Cingulair, Albuterol, Calcium + Vitamin D, Pro-Air, Pepcid, Rolaids, Zofran, Compuzeen, Refresh Plus Eye Drops  PRN: Epi-Pen, Albuterol Nebulizer, Benedryl
Undergoing Radiation Taking Lorazepam (Ativan) on Radiation Days


kitkat32
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2009
Total Posts : 106
   Posted 2/14/2010 8:46 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks Smurfy....I am under the care of a neuro doctor. I recently had a CT, MRI, MRA and MRV. Everything was normal except some white lesions on my MRI. They don't know if those are from my previous lyme disease or if something else is starting.

The originally thought aneurysm or vasculitis but everything came out clean.

I too worry about something serious but I have had all the diagnostic tests done so I guess only time will tell.

Best wishes, kitkat

SmurfyShadow
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 2386
   Posted 2/15/2010 4:04 AM (GMT -6)   
Maybe see a rheumy or oncologist? I find teaching hospitals the best. After I went to a teaching hospital after months in pain I was told I had eye cancer and other stuff. But thats me, not that you have it.
 
Smurfy Shadow/Desirèe 
DX: Wegener's Disease, Migraines, Diabetese Type II, PCOS, Lactose Intolerant, Benign Heart Murmer, Depression, Asthma, Asperger's Syndrome, Necrotizing Gramultous Inflamation in eye, A.D.D., Acid Reflux, Tumor Behind the Eye, Carpal Tunnel, Fibromyolgia, Clasterphobic, Arthritis
Medications:  Tri Nessa, Percocet, Metformin, Prilosec, Protonix, Zantac, Advair, Cingulair, Albuterol, Calcium + Vitamin D, Pro-Air, Pepcid, Rolaids, Zofran, Compuzeen, Refresh Plus Eye Drops  PRN: Epi-Pen, Albuterol Nebulizer, Benedryl
Undergoing Radiation Taking Lorazepam (Ativan) on Radiation Days


tysmyboo
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2004
Total Posts : 921
   Posted 2/17/2010 1:07 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi KitKat!
I just wanted to let you know that I have occipital neuralgia as well as cervical spondylosis. I have jumped through all the hoops with preventative meds and lots of other treatments.

After 17 years of suffering I had a Spinal Cord stimulator implanted in December, things are getting better.

Stick with the preventatives and give them a good "Try" make sure you keep a list of the medications you have taken (you may forget over time) and you might want to think about seeing a pain management doctor. I did and he was the 1st doctor who realized it was "ON" and not "migraines" (it took like 2 minutes for him to come to the conclusion...ahhh, the wasted time with the neuros)

Anyway, I started with nerve blocks and then radiofrequency lesioning. If you have any questions I would be glad to answer them for you!
Sara-Migraine/Headache Forum Moderator
Battling headpain for 17 years.
DX: occipital neuralgia-radiofrequency nerve ablation every 6mo
 
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kitkat32
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2009
Total Posts : 106
   Posted 2/17/2010 12:29 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Tysmyboo,

Thank you for your response. I think the med is working. I only have slight surges of pain. I was thinking it could possibly Occipital neuralgia because the pain starts on each side right below my occipital bone. It gets so sensitive to touch and it almost feels like I can feel a searing pain going from those points and right up a nerve.

My temples are also very tender which I have read can also be a part of occipital neuralgia. Sometimes the pain just stays in those areas. Other times it also goes behind my eyes or turns into a really bad headache. Not migraine like though. I have had migraines before and they feel different.

Did you have pain in other areas besides occipital area? Since I started this med I have been able to touch the back of my head and not feel the pain I felt before. I still have an occasional sharp stabbing pain or a searing pain that travels from occipital area and up part of my head.

Thank you for your advice. I am glad to hear the stimulator is working for you. I hope it continues to give you relief.

Blessings, kitkat
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