More About My Migraines

by jessicaturner on June 1, 2009

Thank you for your kind words about my migraines yesterday. Between the blog, twitter and facebook, I felt very loved. :)

For those of you who have been reading this blog for a few years, you know that migraines are nothing new. But for those of you that are newer, I thought I would do a quick recap of my story.

I was diagnosed with chronic daily migraines four years ago. I have seen MANY doctors and tried dozens of preventative drugs. Yes, I have had an MRI. My brain was plump and perfect. :)
The doctor I currently see is one of the top headache specialists in the country. She is amazing- brilliant, kind and persistent. The problem is that I have a very low tolerance for drugs. Usually the side effects that I experience are too much for me to handle – and worse than the migraines.

I have a new daily preventative medicine to try that I am going to be starting as soon as I finish weaning. My doctor and midwife say I can take it while I am breastfeeding, but I would just assume wait. Imitrex works best for me when I have a bad headache, so I will take that if the headache is really bad – or if I can tell it is heading in that direction. I have tried Treximet (the new version of Imitrex, which my doc was on the developing team of), but don’t think it works better than Imitrex)

I have also tried the chiropractic route. While it did alleviate much neck/back pain that I have regularly (thanks to my “girls”, high heels every day, and tightly-wound type-A personality), it did not help the headaches.

In addition to going a medicinal route, I have also tried a natural route. I did a 14-week detox under the care of a natural doctor. I lost 20 pounds, but my headaches were the worst they have ever been.

I have not tried acupuncture, but may try that next.

So that’s the short story. :)

Happy Monday!
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{ 28 comments… read them below or add one }

eRika June 1, 2009 at 1:29 pm

Hi Jessica,

Sorry to hear about all of your pain. I’ve found the new Treximet to work even better than Imitrex. Just something to think about. I’m sure that you and your doctors have explored many options.

Wishing you a pain-free day!
eRika

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Michelle June 1, 2009 at 1:34 pm

Migraines…ugh! Praise God I haven’t had one since the birth of my twins:) I hope that it goes away quickly!

Swing by my place and pick up your award, I really like your blog:)

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Mom2Valerie June 1, 2009 at 1:36 pm

I’ve gotten migraines every once in a while, but not quite that bad. So sorry to hear you are dealing with them yet again. Praying for you!

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Tonia June 1, 2009 at 2:05 pm

How miserable, I am so sorry you have to deal with that!

Just thought I would add my 2 cents which I am sure you have heard already, but have you tried going to a chiropractor consistently? I see one who uses the Gonstead method.

Just at thought. I am sure you have tried almost everything :) Maybe accupuncture might do it!

Praying for relief!

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Jackie June 1, 2009 at 2:08 pm

Jessica,
I hadn't had a chance to comment on your earlier post about your headaches. I don't have any help to offer, but I can identify. I used to have migraines all the time. I began having them as a very young teen-ager & continued on through my 40's. I understand how debilitating they can be. I am so sorry you have to deal w/ them.

I rarely have a migraine anymore, which is very nice.

I hope & pray that your new medicine will work wonders for you.

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Melissa June 1, 2009 at 2:09 pm

Jessica,

I too have migraines, although not like you do! I watched my mom suffer through chronic headaches that left her in bed in a darkened room for pieces of my childhood. My prayer for you is that you would find relief and peace. Praise God for a wonderful doctor!

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Jessica Turner June 1, 2009 at 2:30 pm

@Erika – Treximet doesn’t seem to work any better for me than imitrex – it makes me more tired too!

@tonia – I have done the chiro route, but it didn’t alleviate the headaches.

Thanks for the thoughts – I added them to my post. :)

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Charlene June 1, 2009 at 3:48 pm

I have had a headache everyday since September 29, 2008 and have just now gotten relief for it. It hurts on one side and it can get really bad. I’ve been to one after hours clinic, my regular doctor, and a chiropractor. Finally I went to a headache clinic and the doctor told me that he thought I may have a rare disorder called Hemicrania Continua. He said the only thing that disorder reponds to is Indomethacin, which I’ve been on for a week and have been without a headache. I was skeptical about it at first, b/c I mean, what are the odds I would have a rare disorder? But I forgot to take the medicine on Saturday and the headache came back.

I hope whatever your doctor prescribed works for you.

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Rebecca Louise. June 1, 2009 at 4:54 pm

It sounds like you ahve tried all avenues. My Mum has sufffered with chronic migraines all her life. She takes 3 different medications which have helped a great deal especially – Naramig, I think that is how you spell it. Her migraines are related to high hormone levels.

As I was growing up I still to this day (but not as much) I had terrible sickness, fuzziness, aversion to light and awful left-sided stomach cramps. I was then diagnosed with abdominal migraines which I had never heard of! I take imitrex for it and it helps.

Your’re not alone :-) xo.

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Rachel June 1, 2009 at 6:25 pm

My story sounds the same as yours. I’ve had a constant headache (migraine variant) since I was a freshman in high school in Oct 1999. Some days it’s almost unbearable and somedays it’s just a dull ache-annoying, but I’ve gotten used to it. No meds ever worked for me except prescription strength Aleve. I’ve been on almost everything.

Anyway, I did acupuncture and it didn’t work for me, but I know someone that it worked for so it’s worth checking out.

I hope you get these taken care of. I will totally be praying for you because headaches totally suck (as we both know ;-).

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Andrea June 1, 2009 at 8:30 pm

What about botox? My mil does it every 6 months for migraines, insurance won’t cover it even though it is not for the wrinkles!

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Kristen June 1, 2009 at 9:10 pm

Still praying for your headaches and have been since I started reading about a year ago! A friend of mine has terrible migraines as well. They tried injecting botox into his forehead to alleviate them. (I’m not really sure how this was supposed to work).

Just an idea.

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Anonymous June 1, 2009 at 9:13 pm

Well I definatley feel for you. My daughters are now 13 & 11 but I remember vividly having to care for them with a pounding head when they were babies. It was so hard to not be 100% for your baby. Now with them being older, they can just look @ me & know I'm having a migraine. They'll even ask me if I need my migraine meds. *LOL*

Also, in addition to the regular migraines(if there IS a regular one) I had sinus migraines! I had surgery for a deviated septum back in March 2009 due to severe migraines & being mis-diagnosed with chronic sinusitis. I must say, my migraines have decreased significantly since then. I still have migraines BUT not everyday. Not sure if you've gone to an ENT specialist to check this out but if you haven't, it's worth a shot.

Good luck & may you have a blessed/migraine free day/week/month/year. :)

~Christi~

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Nirupama June 1, 2009 at 9:29 pm

Sorry! didn’t mean to pry, but as a surgeon I worry when I hear about weather-associated headaches (ie, barometric pressure associated headaches).

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Jill June 1, 2009 at 9:50 pm

Have you looked into the possibility of TMJ? That can cause horrible migraines.

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Jessica Turner June 1, 2009 at 10:09 pm

@Jill – yes, we have looked into TMJ and I don’t have it.

@Niru – I don’t know what you mean, but it is 100% real. Every time rain is coming, I get a migraine. I will say to Matthew, is it going to rain, we check the weather, and it always is. Crazy… It took about a year of tracking my migraines to realize that.

re: botox – my doc says that it would not work in my case. That for a lot of people it is actually a placebo effect.

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Kelley June 1, 2009 at 10:30 pm

I am so sorry that you have had to go through all of this. I hope the pain goes away quickly.

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Chatty June 1, 2009 at 11:57 pm

Oh I'm so sorry. I mentioned over Twitter that I had pregnancy-induced migraines with my last two pregnancies, but I only had a handful of them with each and they were horrendous. I CANNOT imagine having them pop up all the time. Jessica seriously, I hope you can find relief.

:(

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Anonymous June 2, 2009 at 1:24 am

Jessica-

Have you tried any nutrition options. I had terrible migraines and when I changed my way of eating, I have very little trouble now. I am also a Dietitian, so I do keep careful track for my own sanity! Let me know if you have any questions.

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Anonymous June 2, 2009 at 2:25 am

exercise!

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Jenna June 2, 2009 at 2:35 am

Hey Jessica! I’ve been experiencing migraines for about 3 years now and I’m going to my first acupuncture appt. on Thursday. I will definitely let you know how that goes!
Pray your migraines go away! I know how you feel.

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Nirupama June 2, 2009 at 5:17 am

Well, sometimes people with vascular malformations can get headaches with changes in barometric pressure. That is why I asked about an MRI.

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Jessica June 2, 2009 at 7:43 am

My sis-in-law deals with horrible migraines and has recently tried acupuncture. This was the only thing that helped her. Her acupunturist changed her diet around and she took out caffiene, sugar and gluten. With the acupunture and diet changes she hasn’t had a migraine in over 66 weeks. Definately something to look into. If you would like her contact info, please email me. She may be able to give you some further insight.

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Roxanne June 2, 2009 at 3:40 pm

The human body is so weird! I struggle with them too. I haven’t gone in awhile, but massage helps me. I’ve never tried a chiropractor…hmmm…. We’re sure mine is caused by my lovely female hormones….fun! Maybe I’ll have a delightful “old age”?!
Hope to hear that the new meds work for you!

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tammy June 5, 2009 at 5:03 am

I'm so thankful I have not had personal experience with migranes, but knowing others who have had, I can understand a little how you must feel. I don't speak from experience but some friends I know have tried essential oils…not the watered down version from the health food stores, but pure essential oils…check out http://www.youngliving.com Hope things get better for you soon and you find what works for you! Blessings!

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roadrunner201 June 10, 2009 at 10:43 pm

I am so sorry to hear that you are a fellow migraine sufferer. This is one area where there is NOT strength in numbers. The only time I had complete relief was when I was pregnant. I haven't been on a daily preventative since December of 2007 (because of planning to conceive). I am curious about what the daily was that your Dr. said was safe during breast feeding. My Dr. spoke with me about a new daily preventative, but then when he looked more into it, he said it was not for bf-ing moms. Although, I am with you in thinking it's better to wait until baby is weaned.

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Mary C June 10, 2009 at 11:41 pm

Just stumbled to your blog via Bring on the Rain (stumbled on that via My Charming Kids–which I stumbled onto from Matt and Madeline's Blog!)

Anyways–I too suffer from Chronic Daily Migraines and FEEL YOUR PAIN! When you get them they are triggered by ANYTHING AND EVERYTHING (stress, weather, diet etc.) so changing one of those things (as some ppl. have mentioned) unfortunately doesn't help :(

Last fall I started seeing a neurologist (after a ton of eye problems made my migraines worse) and am now on a preventative called Topomax–which you may have tried, but it does have pretty intense side effects for some people. It's an anti-seizure drug/muscle relaxer. So the side effects will prob. effect you more than me–but it HAS helped, instead of getting debilitating headaches every night its usually just once a week now!

Also, I take slo-mag (2) everyday (in the vitamin section). It's supposed to be a natural remedy to migraines! (I tried this on its own first before going on the Topomax).

AND lastly, the first thing my neuro did was ween me off over the counter pain meds (tylonal, advil, aleeve, motrin). I was taking a ridiculous amount everday–now I am down to two or less a day, and that is supposed to make a huge difference!

GOOD LUCK! I wish you all the best, I know how very horrible they can be. God bless!

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Rachel September 7, 2009 at 11:55 pm

Hey there, I hope you don't mind me butting in and being nosy, but I am on the Bloom community, saw your blog and clicked on it. I saw the migraine tag and was interested so I clicked on that, which led me to this post. I wanted to tell you that I had that EXACT same thing happen to me. It was at its worst right after my son was born (Feb 2006) For about one year I had chronic, almost and sometimes daily migraines. NOTHING worked and we tried pretty much everything. I can't take any of the imitrex type drugs (tried about 6 of them) because they make me feel like I am having a heart attack. The preventatives didn't work either. The only thing we could do is have me take vicodin, but as you can imagine, taking too much of this is not a good thing at all! It makes me sick too! Anyway, somehow, these migraines gradually eased and now I get one about 1-2 times a month. My doctor said this happens a lot in women and is hormone related. I know you probably know all that, but I wanted to say I understand and that migraines are HORRIBLE. I seriously finally understood why someone would want to take their own life. Being in that much pain…with no end in sight. I hope they have gotten better—-update?

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