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Lessons from ME/CFS: Finding Meaning in the Suffering
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Quick help for headache/migraine !!

Discussion in 'General Treatment' started by EMilo, Jun 11, 2013.

  1. EMilo

    EMilo Elizabethmilo.com

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    Hi everyone,

    I have been reading the forums for a few hours this morning and I'm fuzzy and in pain and can't process the info very well, so I'm posting this question.

    I am having horrific headaches and I need help. I am prone to headaches, but they usually ease up after a day or two or there is a reason for them (for example, the worst headache of my life was caused by a calcium supplement). However, this headache started last Tuesday. By Saturday, it was really scaring me, I was weeping quietly in bed and trying to catch my breath. Sunday, I developed a huge migraine aura that took out half my vision and I spent the rest of the day and night in a vice-grip of pain. It was still there yesterday, a tiny bit better, and it is still here today ~ only worse again. I'm becoming desperate but here's the thing: I don't take medications.

    I am allergic to NSAIDS and opioids and I've never taken any of the common ME/FM meds. I don't want to take whatever pain killers an ER would give me. I have a few things at home: gabapentin from last year that I trialed for a few weeks, multiple antihistamines, tizanidine (but I can only tolerate 1/8-1/4 pill)... I've also stopped sleeping lately and feel like I'm going insane. Back pain and muscle pain are way up.

    I stopped all my supplements yesterday, plus the Chinese herbs and Nasonex, in case something was causing it. Doctor said she could tell by looking at me that it's not meningitis and she did a neurological work up.

    Should I just pop some gabapentin and hope that it takes the edge off? Should I take tylenol and wait for this to leave, hoping it'll stop waking me at night and I can get some sleep? Can anyone recommend any natural remedies?

    Thank you!!
  2. undcvr

    undcvr Senior Member

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    butterbur and feverfew ?
  3. Valentijn

    Valentijn Activity Level: 3

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    Elizabeth Milo
    A few grams of fish oil (capsules) helps with mine. It takes about a day to start working though - I take it every day to keep the headache away. Presumably that works for inflammation based headaches, and yours might be inflammation or something totally different. But it's cheap, safe, and easy to get.
  4. Sushi

    Sushi Moderator and Senior Member Albuquerque

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    Purified Butterbur used to work for me. The brand Petadolex is a good one but there are less expensive ones--just make sure it is purified as otherwise there are toxic elements. http://www.petadolex.com/v2/petadolex75.aspx

    Sushi
  5. EMilo

    EMilo Elizabethmilo.com

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    Ok, I'm ordering the butterbur right now, although I'm scared I won't last until it comes even with 2-day delivery. Also scared this is a bigger monster than a herbal remedy will take care of, but we'll see... I do take 2 grams of fish oil each day. I didn't yesterday because I was in so much pain, I was scared to put anything in my body and make it worse, but I'll take them again now. I might take my 400mg B2, too ~ I think the doc gave me that for headaches...

    Thank you, everyone so much!! I might do B2, butterbur, fish oil AND gabapentin... am I crazy?
  6. Sushi

    Sushi Moderator and Senior Member Albuquerque

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  7. EMilo

    EMilo Elizabethmilo.com

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    OMG, you've made me panic. I've been taking 400mg/day for MONTHS. And I JUST swallowed the pill, so it's in me today! I'll check with my doctor. Thanks for questioning...
  8. EMilo

    EMilo Elizabethmilo.com

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    Well, I just found the print out from my doc appt last December: we added 200mcg selenium and 400mg of B2 a day. She also wrote: "Think about Petadolex butterbur 50mg twice/day and feverfew 25mg twice a day for headaches." God, we're all such doctors! You guys called it!
  9. Kina

    Kina Moderation Team Lead

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    It's unfortunate that you allergic to NSAIDS because they are the only thing that help me with migraines. I would suggest seeing a doctor though because it's abnormal to have a headache of that intensity for that long and there may be an underlying reason that can be addressed. I generally do not like to take medications but I do find them helpful at times. I am a very bad patient because I never take what a doctor actually prescribes because I know from a experience that a dose for an average person will cause me problems. I will take the prescribed dose of antibiotics but for pain meds, sleep meds etc, I start with a super low dose and if it produces side-effects than I know there is no hope for that med. If it doesn't, I will keep upping the dose until I get side-effects. Generally for me, one quarter of a dose of any prescribed med will cause issues.

    Hope you get this resolved soon. It must be horrible.

    Kina
  10. Crux

    Crux Senior Member

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    I've taken 400 mgs. B2 for migraines...started years ago.
    The protocol I used included: 400mg. magnesium, 400 mg. B2, and 100 mg, feverfew. ( I followed it for 4-6 mnths.)
    It worked for me, but of course, not everyone will respond.
    B2 may take 3 months of daily use to work. ( I had a recurrence of migraine recently and took only the B2. Now, I still take 100 mgs. daily.)

    Magnesium may help will countering the negative effects of calcium.
  11. Crux

    Crux Senior Member

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    Hi again;
    I see you already take magnesium, etc.
    I briefly looked at your posts and saw that you have elevated evening cortisol. Sometimes this occurs with zinc deficiency. It's possible that a low dose of zinc, ( taken in the evening), may help with insomnia, and certain types of headaches. ( It's another mineral that may counter the calcium.)
  12. Ema

    Ema Senior Member

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    Midrin will break a migraine for me without any significant side effects.

    Low dose lithium orotate is also a possibility.

    Ema
  13. snowathlete

    snowathlete

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    Anyone with serious migraines, as yours sound like they are, should look into iEMDR. It cured my father who had them for 30 years most days, and who got very sick as a result. Works for a lot of people and its basically free and of course drug free, and zero side effects so very little to lose from trying it.

    My father had tried everything over the years. I remember as a kid tha the garden was full of feverfew plants (did you know that there are several different trypes? :sleep:) and he used to eat loads of the stuff in sandwiches...I think it worked for a while actually, but then stopped working. A few years ago my mum convinced him to go to a conference on this iEMDR technique in London. He had low expectations but it changed his life. Why does it work? Honestly, I have no idea. My dad doesnt either, but then he couldnt care less why it works, only that it does for him, and for a lot of people.
  14. WillowJ

    WillowJ Senior Member

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    if not triggered by caffeine, sometimes a bit of caffeine will help (though you may be sensitive to this but you probably know what you can do)

    to help stop a forming migraine, sometimes very hot or very cold food/drink will help

    CoQ10 comes up frequently in the literature and mentioned by WebMD, which also mentions Omega-3 oils
    http://www.webmd.com/migraines-headaches/stop-frequent-migraines-5/remedies?page=2

    you can't tolerate meds at all? because they do make lots of meds specific for migraine. a number of different classes with a variety of meds in each class. I second the recommendation to see a doc.
    http://www.webmd.com/migraines-headaches/preventive-migraine-medicine
    http://www.webmd.com/migraines-headaches/guide/migraine-treatments
  15. PNR2008

    PNR2008 Senior Member

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    Three words Botox Botox Botox. I have had many classic migraines where the aura went from side to side along with pain for over a week. I've been to the ER given Demerol and Vistrol unable to walk up the steps to my bedroom and got another migraine in an hour or two. I started at age 11, and continued throughout my life. If any of you saw the woman newscaster saying goobly gook on TV with an absolute straight face, that was like me. Some people as an adult thought I was stroking out, once in an ER in FL the DR thought I was on drugs and withheld meds for 4 horrible hours while I vomited and they looked between my fingers and toes for needle marks and said they were trying to locate my OH physician. Another week vacation I spent in bed with one after another - almost blind with aura, tingling hands, nose and face, the excruciating pain over and over again. I tried the Triptophans one after the other, each lasted about a year in effectiveness. I waited for menopause and they got worse and MRI's show ischemic damage. People with migraines and aura are at a higher risk for stroke. I can not afford to have another migraine. So botox is the answer for me, the shots last 5-12mos and if that stops working I will consider a surgery that cuts the muscle rather than paralyzing it. By the way in my teens and 20's, I tried every "natural thing' known to man, supplements, biofeedback etc. I can't get cured of ME/CFS but I can do something about extremely damaging migraines and by God I do it.
  16. undcvr

    undcvr Senior Member

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    if you want to take Magnesium go for Magnesium Orotate. Magnesium does calm nerves.
    It isn't often recommended to take a very high dose of just a single B vitamin unless it is prescribed by your doctor. What is your doctor treating with the B2 ?

    If you take lots of B vites together they can help. B6 (P5P) and B12 helps with nerves.
    Crux likes this.
  17. Seewell

    Seewell Senior Member

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    Good Thread Elizabeth !
    Hi snowathlete,hope you dont mind me asking,this sounds interesting.I too get very bad Migraines,every
    other day sometimes.Tried many things.
    Is this it here http://emdrresolutions.webs.com/headachesmigraines.htm
  18. snowathlete

    snowathlete

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    Seewell - I'll ask my dad and see if there is a site for the conference he went to. I think it originated in the US but they do conferences on it internationally. A number of people around the world have started doing iEMDR for migraines as a result, perhaps including the link you posted, so you may well be able to find someone locally who can do it if that one isnt close to you. Make sure they have experience of EMDR - the right training etc. EMDR is used a lot for trauma therapy so a lot of counsellors have that training and iEMDR is very similar, and if you can find someone who has used it for migraines too then that would seem your best bet. Its not something that needs lots of sessions, it should basically work straight away I think, and you can easily learn to do it yourself, or get your partner to do it or whatever. When my dad starts getting a migraine my mum does the iEMDR on him for five minutes.
    Seewell likes this.
  19. Seewell

    Seewell Senior Member

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    Thanks snowathlete:)
    Ive been looking into it since my post,looks like its related Acupressure.(at least what ive learned so far)
    Found some interesting videos showing some of the pressure points.
    Going to experiment with it.Not really up to going to a conference at the moment.
    I hate having to take more tablets.But sometimes.
  20. undcvr

    undcvr Senior Member

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    Just thot I wud like to comment a bit about this post (sry but I can't help myself). When you said that we guys "called it" as to what your doc suggested you take as well, I cud not help but think that it shud be the other way around! That it is your doc that everyone shud be surprised is knowledgeable about this kind of stuff and actually knew what to recommend you! Cos lets face it so many docs are so ignorant about supplements and are so reluctant to recommend a herbal, usually safer, alternative first.

    I think that pple here on PR are very knowledgeable about such things. Not that we want to, but we never had the choice not to, but bcos everyone is so desperate to get well, We Try Everything! Eg Fecal Transplant ... need I say more ?

    Having said that and your doc being aware of such things, maybe this one is a keeper.
    EMilo likes this.

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