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Developed Resistance to Aimovig?

Hi all,

I've been fighting with migraines (with aura) since I was a little kid, I believe around 10 years old. As an adult now pushing 40, I've been medicated with amitriptyline (which dried me out horribly), nortriptyline (also dried me out and lost effectiveness), topirimate (which was an absolutely cognitive disaster), and, most recently Aimovig. With each one I also had triptans for once the migraines started, although I never really had much relief with them. Prior to this year, I found that taking 800 mg of Ibuprofen worked to control 95% of the pain after the aura and go on with life, although I couldn't do this too much at the risk of liver damage.

Anyway, I started on Aimovig 70 mg earlier this year after I started having a pile of migraines with aura again, sometimes three aura events in a day and numerous days in a row. Having multiple in a day only started in late 2021. After starting on Aimovig and being on it for about a month, the migraines just stopped altogether... but only for about three months. After that, I started getting groups of migraines again and my dosage was increased to the 140 mg size. Shortly after the dose increase, the migraines seemed to completely stop again, giving me some hope, but this only lasted about two months before I just started getting them again, and I've now had three migraines in the last three days. Unfortunately, it also seems like the severity of them is now significantly worse than before Aimovig such that the supplementary Ibuprofen and triptans don't seem to barely touch the pain.

So, I'm curious - has anyone had Aimovig work well, but only for short period of time before resistance (or antibodies?) built up? This is getting very concerning as I can't work properly through the frequent migraine pain, and the impending possibility of a migraine right around the corner terrorizes me. I was referred to a neurologist about a year ago, but, being that we're in Canada, there's no indication of when I might actually get to see one 🙁

  1. Hi. I just ran across your note while looking for something else. I actually have a migraine now, so I’m going to be brief. Yes, I’ve experienced exactly what you described re the Aimovig. As a matter of fact, I’ve experienced the same thing with each of the CGRP meds that I’ve tried. I’ve tried 3 of them, I believe. And they work pretty well for a while, but then, the migraines seem to find their way around them, to the point where they’re basically useless. What my doc & I came up with as a “solution” was to intentionally rotate the meds every few months. I can’t really write more at the moment, but wish you well & hope this may help you. 💐

    1. Hi Ruth- I'm hoping you're feeling better today- I had a rough one yesterday as well. I love the strategy you and your doctor have developed. I've often said that migraine is like a mouse in a maze looking for cheese. We put down a barrier to redirect it, but with time, that migraine mouse finds its way around and gets to the cheese (an attack). Shifting strategies makes good sense with this in mind. The only potential downside is how some treatments come with side effects that rival the migraine attack itself or take a bit to establish themselves in our systems. So I imagine shifting from treatment to treatment might be a challenge in that way. Is that the case for you? Warmly- Holly team

  2. Thanks for the feedback, Ruth! Hopefully your migraine subsides soon as well. I'll chat with my doctor about the potential to rotate meds, although I'd need to get some insurance approvals ahead of time for it. It's kind of crazy how hard it is to find a consistently effective solution to these migraines.

    1. Thanks for sharing this experience using AIMOVIG here in the community. I recently began CGRPs and cycled through 3 of them. I am currently on Ubrelvy daily. As I read up on CGRPs, I have this fear of it working then not working. So I am keeping my eye on symptoms and severity/intensity as well as managing the quantity that bombard me. I am hopeful this med is the one that will continue to give me relief. I certainly hope others contribute to the conversation and offer up their ventures while using Aimovig. Unfortunately it didn't help me at all. I wish you well and hope you find that rotating CGRPs is a possible solution. Welcome to the community. Regards, Rebecca (community moderator)

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