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Medications & Prescription Treatment

Migraines and Chronic Kidney Disease

  • By GoatLady

    I had thought I had my migraines under control until this summer when the cluster headaches started coming back and now are developing into migraines. The only problem is that I have been diagnosed with Chronic Kidney Disease so I am very limited on the the types of pain medications that I can take. Advil and Aleve are out. I am currently taking 50 mg of Topamax. I was on Propanolol but I hated how that made me feel. My doctor gave me a 5 day prescription for Celebrex which was wonderful. I had 5 days with no headaches, but now she is saying that she is reluctant to put me on that long term. Said I should just use Excredrin Migraine which is no good. Anyone else having the same problem?

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  • By Nancy Harris Bonk Moderator

    Hi GoatLady,

    Thank you for your question and being part of the Migraine.com discussion forum.

    I’m sorry to hear you are having a rough time with your head pain. Are you taking Topamax in a split dose? Taking this medication in a split dose (in the morning and at bedtime) has shown to be more effective and fewer side effects. Here is more information on Topamax dosing; https://migraine.com/migraine-treatment/topamax/dosage/.

    Are you by any chance taking something daily, or near daily to help relieve your head pain? We can unwittingly create another problem called medication overuse headache, moh, which was formerly called rebound if we take pain relievers and/or migraine medications, whether they are prescription or over-the-counter, more than two to three days a week. The thing is if we are in an moh cycle, our migraine attacks will be more difficult to treat and we can end up in a daily cycle of pain that too is hard to break. Here is information on moh; https://migraine.com/blog/help-how-can-i-not-overuse-migraine-medications/

    Contrary to their commercials, Excedrin Migraine is not a good daily option and can create moh fairly quickly. It sounds like you may need to find a doctor who is a bit more knowledgeable about migraine. Neurologists may be fine doctors but have a hard time being experts in one area because they treat so many different conditions such as epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, stroke, Parkinson’s and others. There are doctors who are true experts in migraine and headache disorders and are board certified in headache medicine, which is different than being certified in neurology. We have information on how these doctors are special and how to find one; http://migraine.com/blog/how-are-migraine-specialists-different/ and https://migraine.com/blog/really-find-headache-specialist/.

    I hope this helps, keep me posted on how you are doing,
    Nancy

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  • By GoatLady

    Thank you so much for responding to my message. I am going back to the doctor this week to try to explain to her what exactly is going on. She keeps telling me that headaches will go away. Thank you again!

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  • By GoatLady

    Hi Nancy!

    I went to my doctor today. She is doubling the dose of topamax to 100 mg. She is also putting me on prednisone to, hopefully, break up the migraine cycle. She also gave me a referral to one of her partners who is a headache specialist. She wants me to start a headache journal. She didn’t give me any type of pain medication. So we shall see. Thank you again for your help!

    Diane

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  • By GoatLady

    Thank you for your post. The doctor that doubled the dosage of the topamax is my primary care doctor and is well aware of my kidney problems. I am in the beginning stags of the kidney disease so this probably won’t be a problem. My main problem is the pain killers, I have to stay away from Advil, Aleve, etc.

    How are you doing with your migraine problems?

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    • By Nancy Harris Bonk Moderator

      Hi GoatLady!

      Forgive me for not getting to you sooner – it’s been almost two years!

      I’m hanging in there. My migraine attacks, on most months, have been reduce by almost half with Botox, fairly strict trigger avoidance and relaxation techniques. I still have about 10-15 migraine attacks a month, but that’s much better than it was!!

      How are you doing?
      Nancy

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  • By Christa279

    Hi Nancy,

    Were you using the Celebrex for your headaches? I have never heard of it being used for that. I was on Celebrex for a year for my Osteoarthritis, and it worked wonderfully, plus it had the added benefit of lessening my tension headaches and I didn’t have as many cluster headaches during that time period. I did have to start taking Topamax daily, as a preventative, for my migraines because they were coming on too frequently and I was having to use my abortive medication (Sumatriptan) too frequently. Unfortunately when I switched insurance companies to get access to a better network of doctors for my chronic conditions, the new insurance company has rejected my use of Celebrex and I am stuck using Ibuprofen, which is causing rebound headaches. My new pain management doctor is not as good at handling getting my Celebrex covered as I thought he would be. I hadn’t thought of how the different NSAIDs affected my headaches until recently.

    I hope you are finding some relief. It is definitely tricky navigating headaches and migraines while dealing with other medical issues.

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