What is working for me.
Last updated: January 2015
This is what has helped me. I am not a doctor so am not advising that you do this. If you choose to do it you are responsible.
That being said.
My migraines are nothing compared to what other people suffer through so I am grateful for that.
I have had migraines for about the last 12 years. Sometimes as many as 3-4 a week. They last for about 12 hours and go away. The migraine comes back the next day and we do it all over again. Rarely does it come back on the third day but does on occasion.
Generally starts out with just the slightest pressure above and behind the left eye. Left uninterrupted it can take anywhere from 3 to 12 hours to reach maximum strength. I have only had auras twice and nausea once.
Out of desperation I went to a medical provider who had me do some blood work for food sensitivities. It is called MRT testing, short for Mediator Release Testing. The test checks your reaction to a list of common foods and additives broken into groups by Chemicals, Dairy, Fruits, Vegetables, Flavor Enhancers, Grains, Seafood, Meat/Poultry, Beans/Nuts/Legumes and Miscellaneous. The reaction level for each of the foods tested is color coded into colors of green, yellow and red. Green is nonreactive, yellow is moderately reactive and red is highly reactive.
I did an elimination diet for 6 months where I only ate from the list of foods that they check reaction for. You are only supposed to eat foods that you are not reactive to, avoiding all of the others, along with whatever foods are your normal migraine triggers. My test showed me that I am moderately reactive to Tyramine so I also followed a low tyramine diet while I followed this MRT diet.
My spices for 6 months were salt and pepper. I was eating to live as apposed to living to eat. It was pretty tough but I learned to get by. I lost 20 lbs. I saved a lot of money not being able to go to ANY type of restaurant.
In addition to the above diet she had me start taking a probiotic, a B complex vitamin, a daily vitamin and fish oil. My testosterone was on the very low end of the chart for my age so she also prescribed that.
Migraines that go to full scale have been cut down to one every 1.5 months or so. Consumption of immutrex is way down. I may have to take a quarter of a tablet once a week, maybe none for 3 weeks depending on how it's going.
For me, interrupting the migraine at the very start appears to be key. My supply of 50 mg immutrex tablets is rationed. Since I was rationed on my immutrex, I would wait to take one until I was positive that the migraine was unavoidable. At this point the immutrex might work but too often did nothing.
My solution was to cut the tablets into quarters. I take a quarter of a tablet if I am even suspicious that I might be in the process of starting a migraine. Wait a half hour and see what I feel like. If I feel no sign of a migraine then I have dodged the bullet for that day. If there are still symptoms then I will take more immutrex. The quantity taken at this point depends on how I feel. Sometimes I get away with just another quarter and sometimes not.
When the immutrex fails and I am completely desperate I will drink caffeinated diet coke. This can take the migraine away in as little as 15 minutes. Typical dose is 1-3 large sodas. That's a lot of soda and it's not good for you but neither is the migraine. The soda is effective even if the migraine is full blown.
If that fails it's an ice bag and bed in a dark room.
If one person gets something out of this that helps them I will be pleased.
Are the family and friends you will be seeing this holiday season understanding about migraine?