va_yzrider

Member
Apr 28, 2003
353
0
Is there anyone on this board that suffers from chronic migraine headaches? I'm at the end of my rope trying to find a way to eliminate what are thought to be migraines, but there may be cluster headaches involved too. I've tried everything I can think of. I don't go for long periods without eating, my diet is as good and predictable as you will find, I ALWAYS wear polarized sunglasses, I try to sleep 8 hours a day (although admittedly I have always had sleeping problems), etc...

These headaches are affecting my life in a major way. Riding seems to produce these migraines quite frequently, so I'm always timid and worried that I'm going to get one. I think it is physical exersion coupled with sunlight in this instance. I don't understand what could be causing them, but it needs to stop. I've had 31 migraines in the last 34 days :bang: .

Anyway, I would love to hear of any solutions that some of you may have come up with if you suffer from migraines. I do see a nuerologist, but there is always a 3 month wait to see him. All he really can do is prescribe more drugs that don't seem to do anything. What I'm looking for are some simple lifestyle changes that I haven't thought of yet.

Thanks a ton!!!
 

Patman

Pantless Wonder
LIFETIME SPONSOR
Dec 26, 1999
19,774
0
I think Ivan gets them sometimes.
 

va_yzrider

Member
Apr 28, 2003
353
0
Thanks.

Some info I left out is that they are hereditary, but they seem to be much worse than what my father and grandmother have. Further, I have drastically reduced the amount of alcohol I consume and have all but eliminated cigarettes (I'll smoke one or two if I'm having a drink on the weekends). I also have limited caffein to one cup of coffee in the early morning. I drink a lot more water too. I never eat chocolate or peanuts (some items that are typically associated with migraines).

Any thoughts Ivan? :)
 

truespode

Moderator / Wheelie King
Jun 30, 1999
7,935
239
I used to get migraines 3 or 4 times a month. Bad ones that would leave me lying in bed with absolutely no light.

Immitrex sometimes worked but it really shot my blood pressure high and made me feel worse for about 45 minutes but then I'd feel good.

After I got sick a year ago I have not had a migraine headache. I still get a lot of headache's but nothing near what it used to be. I am not sure what happened but I have completely removed caffeine from my diet and that has helped a great deal. Another thing that has helped is drinking about 80 oz of water a day and working out 3 times a week, mostly cardio (spinning classes are the bomb).

I also go to a chiropractor and that helps a good deal with the headaches. It used to lessen the severity of migraines but never eliminated them until I stopped taking caffeine.

I'm still heavier than I need to be but my next goal is to lose some weight and I think that will help as well.

Good luck. Migraines suck and are one fo the most dibilitating things someone can go through. The worse part is nobody can tell how much pain you are in so it is hard to get others to understand.

Ivan
 

va_yzrider

Member
Apr 28, 2003
353
0
truespode said:
Good luck. Migraines suck and are one fo the most dibilitating things someone can go through. The worse part is nobody can tell how much pain you are in so it is hard to get others to understand.

That is the truth! It is so hard to explain to someone why you have to leave ASAP! It sucks being out riding or out on the boat when you can't get home quickly. It takes everything you have just to hang in there until you can get somewhere that is quiet and dark.

Imitrex didn't work for me. Maybe I will try cutting caffene entirely. I lift 5 days a week and used to run every day, but running is a little scary these days because I've got a very bad hip (dislocation and fractured femur a while back). Maybe I will get back into biking, but that still hurts a little.

My weight isn't too bad, I'm at 180 right now and going down.

I also have a tendency to get an aura, but it hasn't happened lately. Basically, I loose most of my vision during a bad migraine, which can be a very bad situation on the boat or if I'm driving.

Thanks for your input, it will be put to good use!
 

darringer

LIFETIME SPONSOR
Dec 2, 2001
1,029
0
My wife and both kids suffer from migraines. My wife gets severe migraines about once a month. After trying alot of different meds, she found one that seems to help. It's Maxalt. She got a prescription from her neurologist for this, and takes it at the onset of a migraine. Sometimes it will completely stop it, but most of the time it lessens it. It usually starts working in 15 minutes or so. It has really helped her. Maybe you can talk to your doctor about trying it. Good luck!
 

va_yzrider

Member
Apr 28, 2003
353
0
Thanks Darringer,

I've tried Maxalt and had no response. I've tried probably 40-50 different drugs with little to no results. The only thing that seems to work (and it is often difficult to tell actually) is mixing about 3 prescription drugs and taking 2 to 3 times the recommended dosage (about 10-12 pills at once). I don't really want to continue doing this b/c I know it is bad for my liver. Right now I am taking a triptan, but my insurance will only allow me 6 pills per month. The out of pocket cost for the 6 pills is $130, so that isn't really an option. The last refill lasted me 3 days! Some of these headaches last for several hours (sometimes as many as 8). They basically ruin my whole day.

I've had MRIs and CATs done and they don't reveal any tumors, so that is the only good news I've gotten on the subject. I guess it could be worse.

Thanks again guys.
 

bsmith

Wise master of the mistic
LIFETIME SPONSOR
Jun 28, 2001
1,782
0
Have you researched "Tension Headaches"?

If the Migraine medicines don't touch it, you might have a different type of headaches. If Riding brings it out you may have some Soft Tissue and/or Muscle damage. In Laymens terms it could be causing your muscles to tighten so bad that they pinch or put stress on the nerves in your neck or base of your skull that cause these Headaches.
Depending on what you do, if it's the muscles in your neck, I would guess that sitting infront of a Computer or driving a car for long periods would also trigger a headache, for your neck is upright and not supported during this time.
Migraine Medicines will not effect Tension headaches. You need a different pain killer and Muscle relaxants. Also you would not be effected by the light or need a dark room.

Just an idea, let me know if you want more info?
 

LoriKTM

Super Power AssClown
Oct 4, 1999
2,220
6
New Mexico
va_yzrider-- check out the latest issue of Discover magazine. There is an article in there on a new procedure for migraine sufferers. It sounds like science fiction at first glance, but the device uses a high burst of magnetic radiation aimed at the head. (there are technical reasons behind this that I won't try to paraphrase!)
The results have been pretty successful in limited tests-- especially on those people who have not been helped by other drugs or methods. In the article, they describe a man who has been having debilitating migraines for many years, and after three treatments, he hasn't had a migraine for a year now. They say if they get the treatment started at the aura stage, there's a good chance of preventing the onset altogether.
You sound like one of those people who might be a good candidate for this experimental procedure. If you can't find the magazine, e-mail me at lskennl [at] aol.com and I'll make a copy for you.
 

va_yzrider

Member
Apr 28, 2003
353
0
Thanks bsmith and LoriKtm!

I think you might be on to something with the tension headaches. My neck has been killing me for a long time now (probably a year or more). I do have a long history of migraines, but maybe the neck pain is an indication that tension might be activating the migraines. Also, I work on a computer all day. I mentioned the neck pain to my Internist, but he blew it off (time for a new doctor for too many reasons). I started taking some mild muscle relaxers yesterday, so maybe they will help.

Lori, I'll see if I can find a copy of Discover. I would love to at least read up on the subject to discuss it with my Nuerologist when I see him. The only problem I see is that it is experimental and my insurance doesn't cover experimental drugs or surgery (and it sounds expensive). Heck, I guess it is worth a shot to run it by them and see if it is something they would cover.

Thanks again!!!
 

LoriKTM

Super Power AssClown
Oct 4, 1999
2,220
6
New Mexico
It's the August, 2004 issue of Discover. The article also mentions a couple other options that are available, one of which is a nose spray. Maybe now that the article is out, the procedures are no longer considered "experimental" and may be an option for you?

Good luck!
 

va_yzrider

Member
Apr 28, 2003
353
0
I've heard about the nasal spray, but never tried it. I've been told that doctors are very hesitant to prescribe it b/c it is supposedly addictive. Well, maybe I will have to lean on my nuerologist a bit. Thanks for the advise. I'm going to the book store tonight to look for the magazine.
 

bedell99

~SPONSOR~
May 3, 2000
788
0
I know what you are going thru. I suffer from migraines. The thing about mine is I can feel them coming all day and then they hit at night. I get one every other month. 31 migraines in 34 days might be a more serious problem. The only solution I have found is to take excedrin, which makes things even worse because i can't fall asleep, but it does take away dull pain. Do you think it is something in your diet or as Ivan are you hydrated. Try eating really healthy for a couple of days. I would definetly go to a doctor and have another cat scan/MRI to make sure it is migraines. Sometimes tumors can be so small that they miss them on the first take.

Erik
 
Last edited:

va_yzrider

Member
Apr 28, 2003
353
0
My diet is incredibly healthy and I drink well over a gallon of water per day. My diet has also been very constant over the past 6 months, so I don't think this is the problem. I stay away from any foods that are known to be associated with headaches (ie, chocolate, peanuts, caffeine, etc). I think I would be content if I got one migraine per month (although none would be great :)). Thanks for your suggestions though.

Well, Books-a-million doesn't have the August issue of Discover yet, but I'll keep checking back. I'm really interested in what they have to say about the subject.

The muscle relaxers I've been taking seem to be helping a bit, but I still feel like I'm on the edge of a migraine every day. Maybe some stronger muscle relaxers are in order. Right now the ones I'm taking are very mild (Skelaxin). I've also been taking some ocular nutrition formula in case the problem is with my eyes, but I haven't noticed any large effect. I have photosensitivity problems, but they are often a side effect of migraines.

Thanks everyone!
 

blackhawk468

President of Bling
N. Texas SP
Nov 3, 2000
698
0
I was involved in a car wreck about 8 months ago and I had migrane headaches everyday for about 2 months after the accident, I was seeing a chiropractor that used an activator (they don't crack you its a gentle approach to chiropractic). My headaches went away. Now they have returned and I have had a migrane headache everyday for the past around 9 weeks. They go from bearable to unbearable, but I always have a headache no matter what. I am seeing a new doctor that is helping me with pain management. We found that when you pushed on certain areas of my neck, pain radiated exactly where my migrane headaches were so we are working on fixing the source. I would suggest trying massage therepy (to help release muscles in your neck if they are knotted or strained or whatnot) and a chiropractor that uses activator methods. These methods could help fix the problem. Medications only hide it. There is a lot of gray area associated with chiropractic care, but it could be worth a try. I know that it has helped me.
 

va_yzrider

Member
Apr 28, 2003
353
0
Thanks blackhawk! It sounds like you are going through the same thing I am (except I wasn't involved in an accident). I have been trying to avoid anything involving a chiropractor (b/c of time constraints mainly), but if I can't find any other solution I may look into it. I agree that medication only masks problems, not necessarily solving them. I ordinarily do not like to take any medication, so an alternative is exactly what I'm looking for. On occassion (not very often at all actually) I can find a pressure point in my neck that will almost eliminate a migraine. With that being said, I believe the chiropractics can actually work.

Also, I pretty much always have a "normal" headache, but I'm so used to it that it doesn't bother me anymore.
 

GREENBEAN

Member
Jan 8, 2000
179
0
last time I had one I think it was from eating a whole grain cereal it might have been Mueselix, mooselicks or something like that. I havent had a migrane in years (knock on wood)... I have a siter in law that suffers almost every day with them but she smokes and drinks coffee it has ruined her life to say the least.. I have been to Chiropractors and they are all different I would ask around and find a very good one who has some experience with this it has helped a lot of people some I know... I would try acupuncture too it couldnt hurt... My medical covers 15 visits a year for chiropractic and if you find a good one it really helps you in many ways IMHO.
 

blackhawk468

President of Bling
N. Texas SP
Nov 3, 2000
698
0
http://www.activator.com/

This site will explain the kind of chiropractic I described in my previous post. I go once a week as part of my treatment plan and if I am having a migrane 80% of the time she can bring it down as far as pain level goes, but lately it always lingers. Previously before when I had a migrane she could completely take it away, but I guess I have some sort of super - migrane now (pain medications dont' even make a dent as far as taking pain away). Anyways, if you want to try this chiropractic approach I suggest finding one that is Advanced (they have a list of Dr.'s on their website and their experiencec) and the cost is minimal usually only 40-50 bucks for each "adjustment" it can be more if you use traction or electronic stimulation. When I go in, it usually only takes about 5-10 mintues for the adjustment and I almost immediatly get seen when I walk in the door, so it isn't real time consuming.

Hope that helps.
 
Top Bottom