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50 Years & Older Living With Migraine

Sinus Migraines???

  • By pattymay22

    I recently had ct scan of my sinus and to my surprise it came back normal. I was told that my excruciating pain and pressure in my face were actually migraines. I always thought that the change in weather caused my sinus cavity to block. Then when relief finally came I imagined the mucous draining from the sinus cavities. Well ent explained that there was no mucous and the pain and pressure I am feeling when I have a “sinus headache” was actually dilated blood vessels in my face caused by a migraine. I also get a horrible kink in back of neck that comes with the pain. I’ve suffered from these “sinus” attacks since early 20’s. Now turning 60 they have gotten worse. They last all day and If i’m lucky will have relief sometime the next morning. Advil does nothing. Will be seeing a neuro next month. The thing is I never hear anyone describe their migraine symptoms as incapacitating facial pressure and pain . I don’t even know if it’s a throbbing sensation because the pressure and pain is so severe. Anyone else please.

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  • By thinakay

    I grew up having sinus problems, and possible allergies, but nothing officially diagnosed. Years ago, in my early 20’s I used to think I had sinus headaches. I would be down for several days at a time, blocking out all sound and light, nauseous, sometimes vomiting. I didn’t know they were migraines. For me, my sinuses are always involved with a migraine, In fact when I get a cold, it always triggers bad migraines for me. Typically I get the throbbing on one side of my head, the neck pain. Since being diagnosed with migraines, I’ve found Imitrex works reasonably well for me. I will still have 3 or 4 days in a row (a couple of times a month) where I take Imitrex and then I’ll multiple headaches throughout the month that will respond to Excedrin migraine. I also take Verapamil as a preventative. I don’t know that I specifically have as much facial pain as you do,but I certainly know that before being diagnosed, migraines can be thought to be “sinus headaches”. I have actually never seen a neurologist, but am hoping to do so next year. My insurance will be great next year, so I’d like to see him and check out any other available options. I’m 57 so it’s about time!

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    • By Nancy Harris Bonk Moderator

      Hi thinakay,

      Thank you for sharing your journey with us. As I mentioned earlier, many people who have sinus issues really have migraine disease – almost 80%!!

      I’m so happy to hear your insurance coverage will be improving next year – that makes a great holiday “gift”.

      Keep us posted,
      Nancy

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  • By Nancy Harris Bonk Moderator

    Hi pattymay22,

    YES! It’s amazing the number of people who think they have a “sinus” issue, but in reality it’s migraine disease. When we have a migraine attack, the symptoms can range from teeth and facial pain, to visual aura, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, sensitivity to light, sound and odors, pressure and many others! First let me share our information on “sinus” and allergies here; https://migraine.com/living-migraine/allergies-more-than-inconvenience/ and https://migraine.com/blog/sinus-headache-or-migraine/.

    This article details the various symptoms of a migraine attack, which can be different from person to person and attack to attack; https://migraine.com/blog/symptoms-vary-from-one-attack-to-the-next/ and https://migraine.com/blog/understanding-migraine-symptoms/.

    Good luck with the neurologist and let me know if you need more information for your appointment!
    Nancy

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  • By jstreeter

    I have exactly the same symptoms!!! I have the intense facial pain and pressure along with the kink in the neck. Xrays and CT scans show clear sinuses. Ibuprofen does nothing (it’s my go-to pain reliever otherwise). I’ve tested negative for allergies multiple times (except for dust mites). Mine are triggered for sure by weather and alcohol, but also other foods/factors yet to be determined. The only difference with you at this point is that I’m 41 and have had these migraines for exactly 2 years (my first sinus migraine was Thanksgiving day).

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    • By Nancy Harris Bonk Moderator

      Hi jstreeter,

      Many of us have facial and teeth pain along with sinus pressure when we get a migraine attack without aura. Confusing I know, as we’re led to believe we have a sinus issue, not a migraine attack.

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us.

      Nancy

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  • By cissy2018

    I have been suffering from the facial pain with the migraines. My dr put me on Lyrica and it has helped with the facial pain not the migraines. Eliminating the facial pain has helped make my pain a little less intense.

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  • By TrooperAngel

    You are not alone! I had always thought that I just had sinus headaches, as well as premenstrual headaches.
    15 years ago while sitting in my police car I was hit by a tractor trailer, in a coma for days, rehab for 6 weeks.During my recovery my neurologist diagnosed me.
    I have allergies and my primary Dr felt they were sinus infection, and treated with antibiotics. This usually helped for a week or so. Then the migraine, hair hurting and the temple. I accused my hubby of hitting me with a 2×4…such pain! The left side is worse than the right, both eyes and nose- -feels like pressure. Ringing in the ears (tinnitus) gets worse..
    I will recommend an item that helps me, it’s called The Headache Hat. Had ice cubes in 3 compartments that you can move put pressure on the area’s hurting….Best product I have ever used!
    I do see ‘things’ just out of the corner of my eyes, and see shapes of things or people but as I get closer I realized it was just the mailbox and a tree that appeared to be a person. These occur locally, I know they are there and what they are, as I drive this area daily, it’s just WEIRD!
    My Neurologist had to move and since I was stable, he left me in the care of primary Dr. With these new meds coming out, I am wondering if I should get a new neurologist? I love in Southwest Virginia and have not heard anything good about our neurologists. Due to my accident I tire easily and its difficult for me and my family to travel to Richmond or make long road trips. I hoped I’ve helped you!
    I am so happy to hear I’m not alone with the hurting hair, achy muscles….
    Does anyone have pain in area’s where clothing rests on the skin? It’s only Along the panty line it burns feels raw but there is no rash or sign irritation. I’ve tried everything, 8 different types of underwear, larger size, have washed all my clothes in sensitive skin detergent. Tried sensitive skin lotion, Vaseline, Neosporin . At my wits end. Any ideas?
    Thanks for taking the time to read this!

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  • By pattymay22

    Thank you everyone for your support, helpful replies and letting me know I’m not alone in the way my migraine presents it’s painful symptoms. I’m suffering terribly today. Looked at accuweather and migraine day never shows up in the morning when I wake up with a migraine/sinus pressure pain in my face. However if I look later in the day for the evening weather yup it shows migraine weather. So I never have a pre-warning at that sight. I should have known though since here in the northeast the temperature is going from Thursday, Thanksgiving day in the low 30’s to now a few days later 60’s tomorrow and rain tonight before the front.
    I have a questions. I know my ent said migraine and said next step neurologist for meds. Like I wrote I feel the weather change in my sinus area. Across forehead and severe pressure in all my sinus cavities. Nose is blocked and stuffed but really don’t care about that. I just found this new procedure online and wondering if this could mean my relief without prescription medication.
    This procedure could alleviate sinus pain and inflammation without surgery. Should I dare go back to my ENT and ask if would work for me?
    https://www.medicaldesignandoutsourcing.com/this-procedure-could-alleviate-sinus-pain-and-inflammation-without-surgery/

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  • By Nancy Harris Bonk Moderator

    Hi pattymay22,

    I’m sorry you are having a rough time right now. I find continual pain makes everything more difficult. Sinus pain pressure and nasal congestion are common migraine attacks symptoms. I’m not sure how this procedure would impact migraine disease, and migraine is a genetic neurological disease.

    When we wake with head pain, sinus pressure and or migraine pain it may be an indication of a sleep issue, and not only sleep apnea. Restless leg, periodic limb movement disorder are just a few things that can trigger morning head pain. I have both restless leg and periodic limb movement disorder and find muscle relaxers helpful to stave off morning head pain. You may want to discuss having a sleep study with your doctor.

    Triggers! Weather can be a strong migraine attack trigger for many of us. Let me share our information on weather triggered migraine attacks with you: https://migraine.com/video/magnesium-weather-triggered-attacks/
    https://migraine.com/living-migraine/triggered-by-weather-this-medication-may-help/.

    Let me know what you think and I hope you are feeling better,
    Nancy

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  • By pattymay22

    Nancy I thank you for your support. I woke up this morning and thankful the pain went to back of head, neck and one eye. Better then the full face and forehead that got progressively WORSE as the night went on. I can’t describe the feeling to my husband that as I’m taking my shower after waking and even though no pain yet I KNOW I will be getting the migraine pain soon. It’s that horrible out of it feeling. I don’t want to talk and feel that horrible face fullness. Then eventually the full pain sets in. But it moves around. Could be across forehead with the kink in neck. Then go lower to behind eyes. Then to above the one eye . Then go back to forehead and neck and whole sinus cavities.
    Finally late morning with only one advil got full relief. And you know what?? I’m convinced now that yes it has noth9ing to do with my sinus’ being full of mucous. Just that all those years that’s what I imagined. Getting used to now that it truly is migraine and part of the pain is the blood vessels dilating from the migraine storm. Found this that was very helpful in explaining. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aC5sJ86YzuE
    Will call neurologist for an appointment.

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