Abortive for Barometric Pressure Migraines?

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mysteryreader
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 23
   Posted 11/26/2007 1:27 PM (GMT -7)   
I haven't been to the site for quite awhile but have made some new discoveries about my condition since the last time. . .   Now that I'm 1 yr. post-menopausal (YAY!!!) and the hormonal factor isn't as strong or constant, I've realized that high &/or rising barometric pressure is a HUGE trigger.  I'm wondering what the best abortive for that type of headache is.   What are your experiences?   I'd definitely prefer an herbal or OTC solution but hopefully one that addresses what's actually happening -- not just a "bandaid."
 
Thanks!
Mysteryreader 

korbnep
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 327
   Posted 11/26/2007 10:11 PM (GMT -7)   
I can't speak with medical authority, but as someone who has worse headaches with the pressure changes (though probably not as much as you), I wouldn't imagine that having a specific trigger for your headaches such as air pressure is any different than having a trigger like, say, red wine. By this I mean that I do not think that the specific trigger usually determines a specific treatment. I think it's more likely that you'll need to find the medications that work for you by trial and error, or possibly by determining the characteristics of your headache experience more than its specific triggers (for example cluster headaches might be treated differently than new daily persistent headache).

However, having said that, it's possible that your extreme sensitivity to pressure change could be indicative of sinus problems or sinus headaches. Best way to determine if that's the case or not is by having your doctor feel for sinus sensitivity or to have imaging done.

You wrote that you really want a solution that is specifically designed to treat "what's actually happening." I think that's something that we all want. But unless we have obvious causes for our headaches (like a neck injury or Lyme disease), it's rare that we're treated based on exact knowledge of "what's actually happening." I think this is partly because we're so far from understanding exactly what happens before and during a migraine and that it's so difficult to determine "what's actually happening" in each person. Instead, most of the time there's just a diagnosis of a specific pattern of headache and neurologists try treatments that typically show promise in the widest set of circumstances. Anyway, good luck...


Ben

P.S. Sorry if the post is a little confusing or jumbled...I'm feeling particularly unfocused mentally right now.
DX: NDPH, Recovered CRPS
RX: Lamictal, Abilify, Verapamil, Provigil, Clonazepam, Ambien CR, Rozerem, Emsam, Namenda
PRN: Haloperidol, Zyprexa, Lodine, Zofran, Oxycodone

Post Edited (korbnep) : 11/26/2007 10:17:33 PM (GMT-7)


mysteryreader
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 23
   Posted 11/27/2007 1:43 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks for sharing your insights, korbnep.  Sounds like you've got a good handle on the concepts involved.  I'll keep persevering :)

korbnep
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 327
   Posted 11/27/2007 3:31 PM (GMT -7)   
Mysteryreader,
I have some further thoughts actually. I'm not certain, but I think that some people who are sensitive to barometric pressure changes are also prone to have S.A.D.--Season Affective Disorder. People with SAD become particularly depressed during the winter as the amount of sunlight each day wanes (some people actually have reverse SAD and become depressed during the summer due to the greater sunlight). Some people experience this on a smaller scale, becoming depressed when there's a patch of overcast or rainy days--or even just from one sunless day. As you probably know, depression is closely linked to headache disorders--migraines can cause depression and, in turn, depression may worsen, or even cause, migraines.

One theory about the cause of SAD suggests that a serotonin imbalance may lead to SAD's symptoms. Of course, serotonin is thought to play a vital role in migraines as well. Anyway, some treatments for SAD are: bright light therapy, increased exercise (particularly outdoors), and antidepressant medications such as SSRIs and atyprical antidepressants like Bupropion. If you experience the symptoms of SAD, I think it's possible that its common treatments may help your headaches.

However, in my last post, I asserted that knowing the triggers for your headaches usually doesn't help to pinpoint a specific treatment. Even though pressure change seems to be the primary cause of your migraines, most likely the biggest reason that a neurologist won't be able to treat you specifically for "what's actually happening" is because he or she (and indeed the entire medical field) doesn't really know what's actually happening. This is why we must go through trial and error. To take a quote from the Mayo Clinic about your specific condition:

"Study results indicate that some people who have migraines appear to be more sensitive to weather changes, such as changes in weather patterns, temperature, absolute humidity and barometric pressure. The mechanism by which these factors may trigger migraines in these individuals isn't known...There's no clear evidence of a link between weather changes and other types of headaches."

Anyhow, I hope that my ideas help in some way or another.

Feel better,
Ben
DX: NDPH, Recovered CRPS
RX: Lamictal, Abilify, Verapamil, Provigil, Clonazepam, Ambien CR, Rozerem, Emsam, Namenda
PRN: Haloperidol, Zyprexa, Lodine, Zofran, Oxycodone

Post Edited (korbnep) : 11/27/2007 3:32:07 PM (GMT-7)


tysmyboo
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2004
Total Posts : 921
   Posted 11/29/2007 5:59 PM (GMT -7)   

I tend to have a little bit of both, increase in severity and frequency with barometric pressure changes as well as S.A.D  My doctor has suggested that I take Frova (the only triptan that has "abortve" qualities...according to the DR.) a few hours before a weather front. Before I lost insurance, I would do this and find that I had some symptoms, but nothing like it would be without Frova.

I haven't really found anything for the SAD...except that I used to visit a tanning bed occasionally simply for the light, not so much the tan (I'm pretty dark naturally)

I have found in most of my migraineur friends barometric pressue is one of the most common triggers and hard to deal with. (Others you can sometimes get around and this is something you have to adapt to since we can't change the weather :-)\


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korbnep
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 327
   Posted 12/1/2007 12:09 AM (GMT -7)   
tysmyboo said...
My doctor has suggested that I take Frova (the only triptan that has "abortve" qualities...according to the DR.)


All triptans are different but they are all abortive medications. The main qualities that set Frova apart are that it particularly treats migraines associated or caused by menstruation and that it lasts significantly longer than other triptans. I'm sure that if you ask other readers you'll find that the other triptans can have very effective abortive effects.

Ben
DX: NDPH, Recovered CRPS
RX: Lamictal, Abilify, Verapamil, Provigil, Clonazepam, Ambien CR, Rozerem, Emsam, Namenda
PRN: Haloperidol, Zyprexa, Lodine, Zofran, Oxycodone


stronglady4me
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 470
   Posted 1/2/2008 1:40 PM (GMT -7)   
korbnep said...
Mysteryreader,
I have some further thoughts actually. I'm not certain, but I think that some people who are sensitive to barometric pressure changes are also prone to have S.A.D.--Season Affective Disorder. People with SAD become particularly depressed during the winter as the amount of sunlight each day wanes (some people actually have reverse SAD and become depressed during the summer due to the greater sunlight). Some people experience this on a smaller scale, becoming depressed when there's a patch of overcast or rainy days--or even just from one sunless day. As you probably know, depression is closely linked to headache disorders--migraines can cause depression and, in turn, depression may worsen, or even cause, migraines.

One theory about the cause of SAD suggests that a serotonin imbalance may lead to SAD's symptoms. Of course, serotonin is thought to play a vital role in migraines as well. Anyway, some treatments for SAD are: bright light therapy, increased exercise (particularly outdoors), and antidepressant medications such as SSRIs and atyprical antidepressants like Bupropion. If you experience the symptoms of SAD, I think it's possible that its common treatments may help your headaches.

However, in my last post, I asserted that knowing the triggers for your headaches usually doesn't help to pinpoint a specific treatment. Even though pressure change seems to be the primary cause of your migraines, most likely the biggest reason that a neurologist won't be able to treat you specifically for "what's actually happening" is because he or she (and indeed the entire medical field) doesn't really know what's actually happening. This is why we must go through trial and error. To take a quote from the Mayo Clinic about your specific condition:

"Study results indicate that some people who have migraines appear to be more sensitive to weather changes, such as changes in weather patterns, temperature, absolute humidity and barometric pressure. The mechanism by which these factors may trigger migraines in these individuals isn't known...There's no clear evidence of a link between weather changes and other types of headaches."

Anyhow, I hope that my ideas help in some way or another.

Feel better,
Ben

 
I have barametric migraines and SAD.  I live way up North where we are pretty familiar with SAD and have worked with a naturalpath to deal with these things.  SAD is actually a Vit D deficiency.  I have been on mega doses of Vit D this year and have had no problem at all with SAD.  I do however still have the migraines.  I take Imitrex and it works great. 
Stronglady4me
Walk in harmony


buckneva
New Member


Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 7/15/2008 7:28 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi,
My first post.  From someone who seldom had a headache to 3 or 4 knockdown dragout headaches in the past 6 months, I'm desperatly looking for help.  I wake up with a knife in my right eye and try to will it away, over the next couple of hours it goes from bad to worse.  Along with terrible headache in the eye paid, I get weak and naseaus.  If I can get an Alieve D to stay in my stomach long enough, it will relieve the pain.  Today I could not do that and I lost a whole day, ice bags on my eye and neck in misery.  Does anyone know if they make a barometer that you can set an alarm on?  I would want it for drops in pressure, mine always seem to occur on the nicest days, when the humidity drops out of the air.  My family is concerned that it might be more serious and I should go the MRI route, but I really doubt it's anything more serious than pressure.  I have had altitude sickness a couple of times over the years, I think they are realted.
Thanks for any advice.
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