Namenda for chronic migraines?

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deathbymigraine
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2014
Total Posts : 50
   Posted 6/30/2014 10:38 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi all,
I posted recently but in case you didn't see- I have had a headache every day for over 14 months now. I can't break the cycle. I've tried countless meds including nortriptyline, sumatriptan, a steroid, and most recently cymbalta. All of which have given me horrendous side effects. I really don't like medication. I've been on anti-depressants before and just don't like the feeling. Ive done months of acupuncture, meditation, physical therapy, you name it. NOTHING. has given me full relief for more than 24 hours. (and yes I've had a CT scan, MRI, MRV and even endoscopic sinus surgery).

SO..all that being said. Has anyone tried Namenda for chronic migraines? My doctor recommended it because she is aware of my sensitivity to medications and Namenda is typically taken by weak, elderly Alzheimer's patients who are on numerous other meds. However I do have bad depression and anxiety, and am afraid that even this pill at a low dose could trigger mood issues for me (I've had enough issues with that, don't want more). I've heard mixed reviews from people on this drug but there is not much information online. Anyone?

My only other options are Topomax and Botox, neither of which I want.

Sunny13
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2014
Total Posts : 1118
   Posted 7/1/2014 8:01 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi.

Sorry to hear about what you're going thru. I take Namenda, along with a couple other meds to prevent migraines. I just had my Namenda increased to 10mg, 2x/day. I also take Baclofen and Verapamil, as well as get Botox injections every 3 months. I wish I could take less meds, but for now, my headache doc says "it's working, leave it alone". She told me that since I'm having no side effects (other than a little tiredness from the baclofen) that I need to stop worrying and just enjoy my almost headache free life. She said if things continue to go this well, then in 6 months we will consider decreasing some of the stuff.

The combination for me has been a lifesaver. I was getting really bad migraines pretty much every day, except maybe 1-2 days a month. I personally think the addition of botox did the most good for me. But the others definitely do help too! I am down to usually having 2, maybe 3, migraines a month and they are nowhere near as severe or long lasting as they used to be. I have very few days when I have a migraine that forces me to stay home in a quiet and dark room.

I know I am on quite a few meds for migraines, but since there are no side effects for me, I guess I'd rather take the meds and be able to live my life. It's a lot better than being med free but having to live with horrible pain and everything that goes with that. The bad thing here is that I cannot really tell you specifically what Namenda did for me. My dose was raised a few weeks ago though because I was starting to get a few more small migraines and it took care of those.

I also have depression and anxiety, but I take meds for those things also. I do not feel that my migraine meds have really had an effect on my mood.

Let me know if there's anything I can help you with or whatever. I hope you find relief soon!

Just out of curiosity--why do you not want to try botox?

deathbymigraine
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2014
Total Posts : 50
   Posted 7/4/2014 7:17 PM (GMT -6)   
Thank you so much for your thorough response. The reason I'm straying away from trying Botox is because I have hyper mobility. I have been doing physical therapy on & off for 2 years due to a car accident in 2012, and b/c of the headaches I have barely been able to exercise for a year so my muscles are VERY weak. According to my physical therapist (and research I've done), getting botox injections in your head and neck can take a toll on yourmuscles & joints. I already struggle so much with loss of muscle mass & spasms so that's not an ideal path for me to go down. I could do the botox and have no trouble but if it wreaks havoc on my muscular system I am going to be even more depressed and in worse shape than I already am.

I have lost hope in neurologists (i have seen 4 now and all of them have the same treatment ideas that don't work for me), and will be seeing a head & neck specialist next week who also offers pain management. I have heard great things about him and hope the best for that.

Namenda, botox, and topomax are still options.. just not at the top of my list.

Sunny13
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2014
Total Posts : 1118
   Posted 7/4/2014 10:13 PM (GMT -6)   
I understand. I guess I never thought that the botox injected into one area could affect the body in other areas. I'm surprised. I thought it just stayed where it was initially injected. I also get botox injections in the walls of my bladder (for spasms), and in the muscles around my right eye and in my eyelid for another bizarre spasm condition. Has worked wonders for me in all 3 places, but I completely understand why you wouldn't want to do it. however, when you go to see the head & neck specialist, I would ask him/her about the botox and their opinion on how it would affect other areas of the body. Just a thought.

I wish you lots of luck with the new doc. Sounds like a good person to go to--a different perspective and how wonderful that they do pain management too! So even if they can't find a treatment that will work for you right away, they will at least be able to help you with the pain while you explore different options.

As someone who has multiple chronic medical conditions, I know how medical "junk" can lead to depression. I struggle with that a lot. It's bad enough to be in pain/not feel well physically, but then it interferes with your ability to live your normal daily life, and adds stress, and before you know it, depression is kicking your butt. Just try to remember that you are not alone and this situation is temporary--it may take a bit of time, but you will find answers and feel better; you will get your life back again. It may not be "perfect" but you'll find a way to make the best of what you've got. And it's super annoying to hear this but it's true--you have to take it one day, one step at a time.

Good luck and don't give up. I know you will find the answers/treatment that will help!

Let me know how your appointment goes.

deathbymigraine
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2014
Total Posts : 50
   Posted 7/13/2014 5:41 PM (GMT -6)   
Thank you again. To update you, I met with the head/neck specialist on Thursday (and learned he is not an MD but actually DDS) and I was very happy with him. I have seen so many doctors & specialists over the past year but if anyone is going to help me it's this guy. His name is Steven Graff Radford at Cedars Sinai in Los Angeles.

Anyway, he did a thorough examination of my head, jaw & neck, he read through all of my previous doctors' notes, and came to the clear conclusion that medication simply does not work for me. Therefore he is taking a more natural route with my sensitive self, and has put me on a supplement diet. Every day he wants me to take 400 mg Magnesium with 400mg Riboflavin, along with 1g of salt tablets to raise my low blood pressure (usually 90/60 so i often feel lightheaded). Since I am so sensitive I decided to try half of the riboflavin dose for now because it is something i have never taken before (unlike magnesium which i was already regularly taking 250mg a day).

Friday i began with 400mg Magnesium, 200mg Riboflavin and the 1g of salt and it REALLY helped my head. I could tell. It took off 50% of the pressure s that instead of feeling a level 4-6 headache it was about a steady 3 (even went down to a 2 for a bit). The only issue was that it upset my stomach but I figured by day 2 it would be fine. So yesterday, day 2, I took the same dosages and noticed it was wreaking more havoc on my stomach so I decided I need to taper down a bit lower again. I attributed the stomach/digestive issues to the magnesium, so today, day 3, I took 250mg Magnesium, 200 mg Riboflavin and 1g salt. Unfortunately the headache is worse today as opposed to the last 2 days, although my stomach is better. It's too bad you can never seem to win with any kind of pills. Having said that, I may take something for my stomach, or just take the dose I'm on now for another several days until my stomach settles more before upping the dosages again to what he originally recommended.

Other than that, he really recommends botox for me. I told him my issues with it and he said not to worry about it. And honestly I don't have much else to lose at this point. I will probably get Botox in a couple weeks. My questions for you are 1. What did it feel like? I am a bit afraid of the pain even though I have many piercings and have had many sessions of acupuncture which probably feels similar to botox injections. 2. How did you feel the days after you had Botox done? Were you able to move your head? Were you in worse pain? How long did it take to feel your head/neck back to normal again etc.

Thank you!

imorgan
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2015
Total Posts : 14
   Posted 10/8/2015 1:17 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi,

I'm currently on week 2 of taking Namenda. I have constant, everyday 24/7 headaches/migraines for 3 years now. I have tried literally everything and anything, with no success. I've tried Botox as well, which unfortunately for me, did not work.

My doctor recently prescribed Namenda to see if it would break the cycle. I'm just starting to feel the side effects (nausea, numbness, dizziness, vertigo). These are usually symptoms i have with my migraines, but the medication makes them stronger. I'm hoping the side effects calm down as I get used to the medication.

I've also tried Topamax, which I would not recommend for you. I had terrible side effects while on them. I've also tried the Magensium, Riboflavin and CoQ12 supplements, with no success, but that doesnt meant they wont work for you!

I've heard lots of success stories with Botox. Unfortunately, they didnt work for me, but again, it could be something that can help you! Good luck!
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