Unbearable migraine

i know that last year i survived a 2 month long migraine that was almost 3 months before it went away. well its been a week and i have no idea how i made it almost three months like this.

i remember from last time that i am not the only one who has suffered from long migraines. i need your help again please. after being admitted for the migraine i was put on new meds. they are propanol its a blood pressure med that also is supposed to help with migraines. i do have high blood pressure but this med is supposed to help in more than one way. i was also started on amitripaline which is also supposed to help with chronic migraines.well right now neither r helping and the symptoms r getting worse.

i have not gone to the er because right now they r not going to help much. i may get a few hours of relief bit that would b it. i am not saying i wont end up going expacially cause the migraines r getting more intense.

i was wondering what u take take to help prevent mograines. i was on topamax for years and it didnt seem like it was helping much anymore so i was taken off it. the only thing i can take when i get a migraine is foriset(i cant rememer how to spell it). i can take otc meds but i can not take triptans such as relpax or imatrax. i have a rare type of migraines called hemiplegic migraines and because of these i cant take triptans cause they could cause a stroke.

the only triggers i know of r stress and my cycle which is when this one started but they usually only last a day maybe 2. if i dont have caffine i will get one too.

welll writing this as u can imagine is making my migraine worse so i have to end here.

if u have any tips or suggestions on things to take or home remidies i would love to hear them. i need to go to my dr soon but i dont have an appt. yet and i would like to see if he would change meds to help prevent migraiens since my current treatment is not working.

thank you bunchs


I have never taken any medications to prevent my migraines. Through good stress and lifestyle management however I have been able to reduce them drastically. I used to get 2-3 a month with 2-3 rebounding migraines a year that would last anywhere from 2 weeks to several months. I now get on average 3-6 a year, and they last no more than 2 days.

I have a history of hemiplegic migraines, the last one I had was in June of this past year. The worst one I had I lost most of my speech and was partially paralyzed on one side. My migraines also come with aura, my auras are usually a loss of peripheral vision and synesthesia.

I also cannot take NSAIDs, or triptans. I also avoid using narcotics for migraines as they have a history of causing bad rebound.

So what works for me?

I have done a lot to improve how I deal with stress. I have my own coping skills, mostly if I cannot do something to change a problem right that moment I do what I can to put it out of my mind. I also do what I can to redirect myself to be realistic and not fall prey to catastrophic thinking. If I'm acutely stressed I use deep breathing.

Staying hydrated! Dehydration is a huge trigger or migraines, and that means drinking plenty of water, not juice, or something else. If my other illnesses start affecting my appetite, or due to my other illnesses I am unable to eat I will drink gatorade as not eating or having enough calories can also trigger migraines.

I also avoid my triggers, and plan for them when they are unavoidable. So when I have periods (right now I don't due to other medical issues) I make sure I have my migraine meds with me, I eat well, stay well rested, and stay hydrated. I find triggers tend to gang up together and that's when migraines get really bad.

As I started improving my lifestyle to better manage my migraines they reduced over time. First they shortened in length going down to at most a week, and then down to 1 or 2 days. Then over the course of a year the number of migraines I had started to come down, to once or twice a month, and now a few years later several times a year.

If I start feeling a headache coming on of any kind I make sure I drink plenty of water and calm myself down. At the first sign of migraine aura I take my migraine medication as soon as I can. I take Caffiene-Ergotamine which shrinks the blood vessels (and migraines are vascular), take Tylenol for the pain, and Reglan for nausea and Reglan can also help with other migraine related issues.

To prevent migraines from going into rebound and causing those long 1-2 month headaches I do a few different things.

I make sure I rest.

I avoid all potential migraine triggers.

I make sure I stay hydrated and keep my blood sugar up. If I have bad nausea I'll drink broth.

I stay away from TV screens and the computer.

If I have to go out I try not to use the eye the migraine is affecting.

I avoid light and loud noises.

I also avoid anything that causes blood vessel dilation e.g. hot showers, hot baths, alcohol

I also do what I can to manage the pain (without narcotics!) using deep breathing, meditation, distraction (listening to radio or podcasts at a low volume), cold compresses, etc.

Bad use of medication can also cause rebound. If the first few doses of my migraine medication (which I take religiously when I have one) are not effective I stop taking all medications but Tylenol and revert to rest. Narcotics, caffiene-ergotamine, and other medications taken for migraine can cause rebound headaches, and then rebound headaches can trigger back into migraine. Rest in a dark, low sound environment is key for healing a migraine. Cold packs can also be helpful. After the core of a migraine it is also incredibly important to go slow and stay away from all triggers, and continue with dim light and low sound.

A few common triggers for migraines:

- Sulfates

- Artificial sweeteners (big one for me I can have no diet drinks)

- Barometric changes (if the weather is wacky I make sure I have plenty of water and my meds)

- Running on low sleep

- too much caffeine or too little if you're a morning coffee drinker


- flashing lights

- tiredness

- alcohol, especially wine (sulfates) I can't drink any wine at all.

- MSG and other chemicals added to processed foods

- certain perfumes and smells

Hey Stephanie,

One theory of migraines is low Serotonin level in the brain. Some people are put on antidepressants. I was but too many side effects. 5HTP (over the counter) works just as well without the side effects. You might read up on it. I used to be in the ER because of them.

I hope you feel better. Mine got better as I got older. My old doc said his did too.


Susan (energy healing)

Oh, how we’ll I remember what you’re going through. I’ve had migraines since I was 13 and they were severe either before, during or after my period. I first started on midrin and as they got to the point I would black out, doctor put me on corgard in the morning (its for high blood pressure, even though I didn’t have HBP). Was also given amitriptylene 25 mg. at night to help with finishing sleep. Eventually, the midrin didn’t help and I gave myself an imitrex shot. Was hard to do when I was so f----- up. It gave me a weird metal taste in my mouth and a sore throat. I was then given Zomig 5 mg. terribly expensive - only hot 6 pills at a time and if you don’t have insurance they cost like $37 a pill. But we’ll worth it!

Doc added Wellbutrin in the am to see if that would help any, but it didn’t. Sent to neurologist and tried topamax that only made me foggier. Then he tried another anti-seizure med that just made it worse. I also take generic fioricet when I feel a headache coming on now, and if I can’t catch it, I take a Zomig. I also have antinausea suppositories if I have a bad one, as I usually get very ill.

One of my worst ER trips was caused by drinking orange juice from a carton. The ER nurse said that there’s a chemical in canned, cartoned juice that isn’t fresh squeezed because there’s a chemical in the rind that triggers migraines in people. So even though you think it’s good for you it’s a huge trigger!

Hope you can find some relief soon! hugs~ Sandi

I dont get migranes, well I had 2 in my lifetime and they were horrible, so I cant imagine what youre going through. My heart and prayers go out to you. Have you ever been tested for food allergies? I just recently did and I am allergic to some strange things like pineapple and asparagus, plus gluten and dairy products. My Dr. gave me a list of foods to avoid and said my fibro should be much better in a month and gone in 3 months. We'll see. But I bring it up because a) migranes have been helped with chiropractic treatment and learning what theyre allergic to. It might also be environmental, like grasses, mold, any foods containing yeast or sugar as they cause yeast overgrowth in the intestinal system, and household products. Have you ever taken Elavil? My dad used to take it for neuropathy pain and worked well. It's an old anti depressant but not an SSRI like Prozac or Effexor. That's about all I can suggest besides the obvious: rest, reduce stress. Easy to say! Thinking of you, Sue

I forgot to say I see a medical massage therapist and she suggested ginger. She has Parkinson's and eats crystalized ginger. Ive been munching on it and I think it is working. Sue

UGH Midrin! I took it in College and felt like I was walking 4 feet above the pavement and it made me horribly nauseous And then ergot, OMG It was worse then the headache! THEN I was hospitalized several years ago for 2 weeks at the Diamond Headache Clinic in Chicago and got some hideous medicine mixture they give everyone that was definitely worse then the headaches! Thank G-d those days are over! This may sound weird but I have read in several places that the metaphysical reason for migraines is sexual tension among other things and that masturbating can relieve them. Of course when you feel like you are going to die or wish you would due to feeling so sick, that is the last thing you want to do! LOL! I was diagnosed in High School but may have had them since I was a kid because I remember being told I had headaches as a kid.

No cheddar cheese, caffeine, MSG, soy or wine especially red. AND I have to be careful not to be in direct sun for too long or strobe lights.


Have you had an upright (standing) MRI to rule out Chiari malformation? I know someone with that and theirs only showed up on an MRI that was done standing up. It's what was causing their migraines. I don't remember what it was called but someone else I know had a problem where some bone in the skull, at the end of the vertebra/spinal column if I remember right, was tilted and pressing on the brain. This gave them migraines but I don't remember the name of it. This is a link on Chiari. http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/chiari/detail_chiari.htm I hope you find something to alleviate them soon.

Hey Steph,

I don't get migraines, but I get some dandy skull crackers from my neck problems, and from sinus/allergies, Chiropractic adjustment has helped me with this.

I hope that you can find something to help you. My husband used to get them, I think he took Imitrex, but found that Excederin for Migraines also helped him. He was using 'Accent' to flavor his foods, which is MSG, and I threw it away, he hasn't had a migraine since, not sure if it is connected or not, but I'm glad he is finally free of them.

Am I correct in assuming that the med they are giving you is a vasodilator? I have those on hand for Raynaud's Phenomenon, to dilate the blood vessels to improve blood flow, is that what this med is supposed to do for you?

It seems as though I have more questions than answers, I do hope you find some answers, I broadcasted this for you, so hopefully you will hear from people who can be of more help than I.

Sending love and hugs,


Hi Stephanie, I’m so sry your suffering with a migraine, I think finding what helps prevent them is the key. It’s good that your dr is willing to keep trying different things. Since my migraines started almost 30 years ago I wish I had kept a list of what I tried, what helped and what didn’t, I always thought there’s no way I will forget having taken something for 5 years and then started something else… Low and behold who knew fibro fog would impair my memory.
I know this doesn’t help much with this migraine now, but I sooo understand how you feel…
I had a killer for 3 week and I tried something different, I had a facial & cranial massage… Wow it actually helped… But my migraine was more from the pinched nerve in my neck and was becoming a re-bound, so I know that’s different from yours
Hugs, & prayers

I get migraines and take Fioricet also was put on Inderal LA at night for prevention. I do see a chiropractor and that helps. I couldnt imagine having one for months. Could they maybe test you while you are having one that lingers like this? Just a thought. Hoping you feel better soon.

Wow, what a great post. Perhaps Stephanie will need meds right now but this is great advice to follow for future migraines. And of the triggers you list, i'll bet that most of us have indulged in them without even thinking twice while using them. Yet those prone to migraines would be wise to look out for all of them.

My sympathy to all of who suffer from them. Mine only come during my cycle and don't last more than a day or two. I just cannot imagine having the complex ones that many of you suffer from. I give you all so much credit for braving through them, knowing you are vulnerable to them again. SO unfair that some people get saddled with such a (temporarily) crippling issue!

wow thank you for taking the time to write that for me. i am not doing anything on the laptop other than a few min to respond to this discussion and i did a quick response to another.

i didnt know too much sleep would hurt me. i also didnt know hot showers were bad. like most in the winter i love a long hot shower. but to b honest when i showered today it hurt for the water to hit my head. maybe i should go to a salon and have them wash my hair for me.

as far as stress i have alot of that right now. the good news it that on thing that was stressing me is no longer a problem. at least not till i have to come up with $250 on july 3rd. but that is a long time off and i am not going to worry about it.

i do not drink alcohol cause i am alergic to the 3 main ingredients and cause of my beliefs. i do drink water. more on some days than others. besides my brother i am the only one in the house who drinks water regularly. i do not drink coffee but dr pepper. i can when i wake up and one with dinner. sometimes i may have a little more depending on the day and what i am doing but i try to just have the 2 cans and water through out the day. if we have juice i do drink some but not alot.

i will refer back to what u wrote right now my head is spinning from all the pain. thank you again, this means alot

i am on cymbalta and amitriptline they r not helping. i will look into the 5HTP and see if i can afford it. if not i will see if i can get someone to but it for me.

mine better get better as i get older. right now i am having more problems than ever with them. thay r more intense and lasting way too long.

wow the oj thing is very helpful. the kind i get comes in a clear plastic bottle but it is only sold at Aldi anf if i buy oj somewhere else i get the carton. not anymore. thank you i will look into the meds u listed and see if i can take them.

thank you. i was tested for food allergies along with all the other ting they test for. i had 56 foods i was allergic too. i had to avoid them alll for a time then slowly reintroduce them. i have not been able to be retested but as soon as i get insurance i will.

as far as the things indoor and out there is no hope for me. my arms pretty much swelled from the test cause i was soo allergic to so many things. i take zertec and singuliar year round plus other allergiy meds as needed. when it comes to allergies there is no hope for me.

Hi Stephanie,

I only get them during my cycle and they're not that bad so I don't have any recommendations for you. But the people who've written to you here have given you a lot to go on. I mean, you have everything to look into, from food allergies, to lifestyle management, and plenty in-between.

You must have received your Medicaid by now so getting in to see a regular doctor who can help to figure out your triggers would be a help. Testing to see if you have food allergies, having you keep logs to see what you ate/did prior to the onset of the headache, etc. could yield important information. Like, for instance, it wasn't until I was an adult that I figured out that luncheon meats gave me a migraine headache, and what made me realize it was checking the clock and seeing that it always happened after I ate lunch. I also think that writing down all of your known triggers would be immensely helpful, along with breaking them down into categories, like "foods that cause migraines", "weather that causes them", plus including the date and time you got them. You could leave a box under the category so you could write down each individual food/weather type/etc. that causes them. Sometimes there are so many that you forget that they trigger a headache.

Are you around smokers? I used to suffer from agonizing, never ending migraines as a child due to my father's cigarette smoke. Several years after moving out, they went away. So smoke from cigarettes can also trigger them, if you didn't already know this.

I hope you can get yourself sorted out before this spirals out of control. Feel better!


i have not had an upright mri due to no insurance. i have had them laying down and cts the last one in the beginning of March cause of a car acccident.

thank you for the link i will read it when i can right now i am not spending any more time on the laptop then i have too.

the only reason i was given the mri and cts in the past was i was admitted to the hospital and they were run then and not as outpatient.

i dont know if the meds i have are in that catorory or not but i will check. thank you for responding

Zomig 5 mg is all I can take. I can’t take the triptipans. I am on an every 3 month regiment of Botox injections for migraines done by my pain clinic. I also have occipital nerve neuralgia which goes along with the migraines.
they also give me Fioricet if the Zomig isn’t strong enough.

Good luck Eeyore.