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New type of Migraines – new plan

I’ve suffered from migraines for almost 30 years. I inherited them from my dad. I’ve been on Topamax for over 10 years and it has been successful to keep them to about 5-7 a month. I take Imitrex and some OTC meds those days then go to bed and shut out the world. I’m “lucky” because mine are mostly predictable due to hormones.

In the last 2 months, my migraine world changed. I had 9 within 14 days. Right now, I’m on a run of 14 since the second week of July. My daily life sucks. I can’t run – I’m a marathoner. I barely function even though I have had 3 trips with my daughters. I continue to wake up with a mild migraine every morning.

I saw my neurologist yesterday. He added a beta blocker. He has a game plan if they don’t work within 4 weeks – brain scan and perhaps Botox if the number of headache days continue to increase.

Has anyone ever a change in their migraines like this? Thank you!

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  • Lodalyn
    5 years ago

    i have been on Topamax for somewhere around at least 8 years I think. Before that I was on a beta blocker, but that caused my blood pressure to bottom out and I was passing out all the time and had a seizure because of it.
    The Topamax for me is to control the number and severity of migraines I get per month. I had thought that it was working fine, but when I moved to a new state the new neurologist wanted me to keep a migraine log. I really never knew I was still having so many per month with the Topamax. Scheduled for yet another MRI in September.

  • Guineverre
    5 years ago

    My migraines have transformed over the years. When I was younger, I had episodic migraines and I’d have a monster migraine only 6-8 times a year. In the past few years it’s transformed into chronic daily migraines, (about 25 headache days a month.) I can’t be sure what happened, but I think medication overuse was a factor. I did not take Topamax. In my case it was overuse of triptans. Otherwise, I think headache cycles just change in general over the years. Feel better!

  • chienjouet
    5 years ago

    This happened to me, too. Just like this. It’s not the first time my migraine has changed. I had my first migraine when I was about 35 and I had aura, with no pain or nausea. Then, a couple of years later, I had aura, then intense head pain and unrelenting nausea that landed me in the ER a time or two. Then, they went away for about 2-3 years. Now they come back as chronic. I get the aura, then dull pain, light nausea. I take Zomig if I get the feeling they’re going to turn bad and that generally works, but not for the nausea, so I take Promethazine and go to bed. I get the sound and light sensitivity. I’ve recently changed my eating habits to Paleo and they have decreased in frequency by about 2/3’s. Through out the years I’ve taken everything out of my diet that has been suggested as a ‘trigger’ and sometimes they’ve decreased the frequency and sometimes not, so through trial and error and my own research on my own experience, whether I avoid all triggers or not, migraine seems to have an agenda of it’s own. So, aside from the food triggers, I live a great big rich active life, and migraines are a part of it. I don’t accept engagements where others are dependent on me, however, as I’m not dependable.

  • txrungirl author
    5 years ago

    Thanks for your input. I have yet to enter any part of the menopause stages – my doctors have told me that the migraines may change when it begins. I’ve been on the beta blockers for almost a week now. They seem to be working, Thank God. My doctor also ruled out rebound headaches – I was thinking that too. He seemed to think I moved to “headache days.” I.e. – migraines lasting for days and days. He cautioned me that there’s a limit of Imitrex that anyone can take in one month. I’ve had 16 migraines in 26 days. A record for me. So before the beta blocker, I was really suffering, didn’t want to take the Imitrex or OTC pills due to possible damage to liver. I’m going to get blood work done to check organ function due to pill intake. Again – thanks everyone. I’m cautiously hopeful for this new plan.

  • maxgordon
    5 years ago

    Yes. I also had more or less “predictable” migraines for thirty-five to forty years, with five to ten per month of varying severity. When I started going through menopause, they started to drop off, then just before I turned fifty they shot up to ten to twenty per month. Now I am 99% through menopause and have migraines more often than ever, though not all are above level five. Wish I had words of encouragement to offer you. 🙁

  • Sojgrensplusmigraines Sue
    5 years ago

    I would focus on hormonal changes, as you enter peri-menopause you can have fluctuations much more often in the usual monthly cycle. For me, that dramatically increased my migraine days. By working with my GYN, I was able to use bio-identical hormones with great success. Once I entered menopause they did decrease a bit more, but I still struggle with weather changes as a trigger. I tried inderal and you should be careful as a runner it does decrease your cardiac output and makes it much harder to exercise. I came off for that reason. Hopefully this pattern will change and please consider the hormone effect as a changing factor. I wish you the best and a decrease in your migraines so you can live your life.

  • Katie M. Golden moderator
    5 years ago

    Yes, this happened to me out of nowhere 3 years ago.
    I used to get Migraines between 2-14 times a year. Then one day I couldn’t get over one without another one coming on. I missed 2 months of work straight. The Migraines are now constant and chronic.

    I really hope that this is not your fate and you can find something soon that gives you relief. One advice to you is that this process is going to take a lot of trial and error to find the right combination of drugs. Your focus should be on trying to manage the pain and triggers and not on finding a miracle cure.

    I encourage you to keep exercising (as hard as it is), that has helped me tremendously in dealing with the pain. Even easy stretching or yoga can be beneficial.

    Also, since this has come on quite suddenly, you should really look into seeing a Headache Specialist right away. A neuro has more training than a regular GP, but a headache specialist only deals with headache patients (while a neuro also treats patients with Alzheimer’s and ALS). It may take a while to get an appointment, so keep seeing your neuro until you can get in with one, at least for a second opinion. Here’s an article to get you started with finding a Headache Specialist.

    I wish you the best and please feel free to ask more questions and visit our Forum section too.

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