need help, anyone know about surgical remedy?

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Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2004
Total Posts : 41
   Posted 2/12/2008 12:15 AM (GMT -6)   

I have atypical severe migraines. Nothing helps. I've been on every possible migraine med. I seem to be pretty drug-resistant across the board, anti-depressants, painkillers, it doesn't matter.

Do you know or have you heard of, any type of surgical remedy for migraines?
I met a lady at a Rx one day about 20 years ago who described her own surgical treatment for treatment resistant migraine. There was nothing unusual in the bilateral symmetry of her face.
Too often, i get an especially horrendous migraine that lasts 3 to 6 days, and the pain level is simply off the chart.

Any help is much appreciated.


Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 1308
   Posted 2/12/2008 5:32 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Poet,

I am sorry to hear you are suffering so much. You didn't say how often you had a migraine attack, how long they last or exactly what meds you have tried, because I am sure that you know some meds can be used off label for some diseases! Have you ever seen a Neurologist who is a Headache Specialist? If not, I suggest you find one as soon as possible, as a Headache Specialist is the best person to treat Migraine!

Surgery? What exactly did you have in mind as I am not sure what can be done other than an Occipital Nerve Stimulant Implant (ONSI), and they do not have a high success rate! Migraine is a difficult disease to treat and sadly there are no easy answers!

Have you tired DHE or Indomethacin? Do you have an Aura? Do you experience any other symptoms along with the head pain? Whereabouts in your head is the pain, on one side, all over?

take care

Co-Moderator of the Migraine/Headache Forum

Regular Member

Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 86
   Posted 2/12/2008 9:32 AM (GMT -6)   
My neurologist has talked about some success with PFO surgery. Patent Foramen Ovale is a congenital hole between two heart chambers and MAY be associated with some migraines. What little I know about it suggests the evidence is far from clear regarding its link to headaches, but you can find more information with a web search.

I'd be very leery about cardiac surgery as yet another "possible" cure for headaches, but it may be worth exploring with your doctor.

Regular Member

Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 57
   Posted 2/12/2008 12:23 PM (GMT -6)   
I'm sorry to hear about your pain. Do you keep a headache journal? These can be very handy to try and figure out any possible triggers that may be occurring. Sometimes migraineurs are constantly consuming a trigger like MSG (in so many things) it is difficult to realize the culprit can be something you can reduce yourself without having to do surgery.

Regular Member

Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 21
   Posted 2/12/2008 11:31 PM (GMT -6)   
I just posted a topic on surgical treatment for transformed migraine, which is the implant that Annuk was referring to before I realized that you had asked this question! I'm looking into it now. Hope this helps!

Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2004
Total Posts : 41
   Posted 2/13/2008 7:33 PM (GMT -6)   
Wow, thanks everyone for replying.
Kymark -aye i know what you're talking about, read about it in detail. I don't remember anything i read (heh) but it wasn't applicable or something.

Sarah -aye i've learned what triggers are specific to me. That's always a fun trial-and-error period.

Annuk - every day or every other day. Aye, neurologist, mri, ct scan, the works. Was lucky, got to see the #1 migraine doc in the state. I stay on top of current research re the things that afflict me. Well, i did; but...the past 11 months or so have...taxed me beyond my limits and broken me down some more.
There's no real set pattern. I get no warning, light hurts, sound hurts, scent -even flowers- hurts the most, it's adding explosives to the fire. I believe the longest one was 6 or 7 days (after 5, it's hard to keep track) shortest ones are maybe 3 hours. I went to a new doc once, brought my Rx records with me and said, i've been on everything; so he looked thru my med records and looked at, "You really have been on everything." Poor fellow had no idea what to do with me. I mean it's a long, long list (morphine has no effect on me at all).
I'm not familar with an implant re migraines, i do know of 2 re Depression. The lady in line at the Rx whom i mentioned, she'd had one of the nerves in the head severed. Presumably the one most frequently registering a pain signal for her. And it wasn't the Trigeminal nerve, 'cause as i said she had facial bilateral symmetry. Mine are mostly over my L eye (no vision or eye problems)
So this is the only thing that makes sense. You can't stop the (pain) signal, can't diminish it, so the only thing left is to disconnect the route.
I know we all hurt. I've reached levels of pain that i honestly did not think were possible. I'm just astonished, -you put too much current thru a wire and it shorts out; and a pain signal SO intense should short out somewhere before it registers.

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