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Old 11-10-2008, 09:46 PM   #1
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reagan1861 HB User
migraines when pregnant/vent

Hi guys,

I just felt like venting on a subject that really annoys me.
I have been getting migraines for probably 10 years now. When I first started getting them, I thought I was just being a baby. I would take Tylenol, Advil, Excedrin, Aleve--you name it, I took it, or I would take all of them in combination. Nothing helped. I went to my dr and they wrote me a prescription for ibuprofen--even though I told them Id taken Advil. They were like "Oh this is 800 mg though". Like I dont know that one of those is the equivalent of 4 regular Advils--and Id told them it didnt work!
Well a few years went by and I couldnt take it anymore. I asked them outright for one of the triptans (sp?) because Id read about them online. They made the biggest deal over it and refused to prescribe them to me. Youd think I was asking for medical crack or something. I was telling my mom about it one day and SHE called my dr and yelled at them. Yeah it was pathetic but guess what, they finally prescribed me Axert. I couldnt believe how well it worked. I was truly in awe of it, and at the same time, angry that Id spent all these years in pain when this pill couldve helped me avoid it! Even though Axert and Relpax are the ONLY things that take my headaches away, I still sometimes doubt that I even have migraines because of the way the dr treated me. They blew me off and acted like I was just a malinger or something, or a baby.
Anyway, when I was pg I still got migraines and as you may know, the triptans are Class C. I was told not to take them at all. Well I did a few times. I was so desperate...My migraines lasted for days and my OB told me to take magnesium. Magnesium! Give me a break! I understand that there is some new research that magnesium and vitamin B can help prevent migraines, but this did me no good when I was in the midst of one. Now I am pregnant again and still get migraines...My new OB wrote me a script for Tylenol 3. Well T3 is as useless as regular Tylenol and anything else Ive ever taken besides the triptans. Yet I dont know how to tell her that--I feel like if I tell her that it doesnt work she will think Im just trying to get stronger painkillers. I dont think it would matter anyway--they could give me a script for morphine and I think it wouldnt touch the migraine either. Part of me is tempted though to tell her that they dont work...I have taken a few Relpax in this pregnancy, too. I feel guilty about it. She has told me to not take them under any circumstances. But I cant sit here in pain for days. I have a kid to take care of and I just cant do it.
Anyway, sorry for the long post but just wanted to vent. I guess my point is that I cant stand how some drs just blow off migraines. I think theyre very unprofessional and very uninformed--they obviously have no appreciation for how painful and debilitating migraines are. They are NOT just headaches. And another thing that aggravates me is when you hear people either online or in real life go "Oh yeah--when I get a migraine I just take a couple Tylenols or drink some caffeine and it goes away." If that makes your headache go away, it is NOT a migraine. It just sort of makes people who get true migraines look like the biggest babies. Makes me wish these people would get a REAL migraine and then watch them take all the Tylenol they want and still be lying on the floor crying and puking--see what they say then about their "miraculous" solution to migraines.
Anyway guys, if you made it this far, thanks for reading! Hope we all are migraine-free, or at least have some meds that work!

 
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Old 11-13-2008, 12:12 PM   #2
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matt3507 HB User
Re: migraines when pregnant/vent

Hi Reagan: I read your entire post and am sorry you are having such a bad time. I'd like to compare symptoms if you ever get a minute. I hurt my neck 2.5 years ago and developed h/a's right after. I do not throw up, but I literally go insane with pain. Lay down and cry like a baby, can not function, usually lasts 2 days. Any lifting over 10 pounds, or walking, basically any upper body exertion and I get one. A cocktail of Neurontin, Flexeril, and Oxycodone bring it down to a level where I can function. But the cocktail is getting less and less effective (tolerance). OTC's have no effect.

Now, about doctors that have no compassion/knowledge. Why we have to deal with doctors like that I don't know, but I have been treated like a baby by some doctors and the last time I didn't sit there meek and scared like usual. I asked him if he ever slipped a disc and of course he had not. I was so ****** I turned red and spit when I talked lol. Some pain is so unbelievable you have to experience it to believe it. Why does the damn body produce that much pain?

Lastly, have you tried the chronic pain board, I'm going there now.

Prayers, matt3507

 
Old 11-28-2008, 07:43 PM   #3
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magpie1970 HB User
Re: migraines when pregnant/vent

I, too, have been suffereing from migraines for many years Finally about 10 years ago a doctor prescribed me midrin. I am 38 and have a 5yr, 2yr and 16month old. When I was pg with the 5yr old, I suffered greatly from these headaches and assumed that I couldn't take my meds. At my 6-week post partum checkup I told her about the headaches and that I was happy that I could take the midrin again, she then told me that I could've been taking them througout the pregnancy. While pg with the 2yr old I took the midrin, even though the guidelines had changed and was told not to take it. With the 16 month old, I took my migraine pills, but for some reason the headaches were MUCH more severe than ever before. I was prescribed vicodin for them, it helped a little, but not much.

As a side note, when I was pregnant with #1 I had a fall and broke an ankle and messed up my other leg. I was put on percocet for about a month. With #3, I had an appendectomy at 26 weeks and was on morphine for 2 days then percocet for 2 weeks, and on vicodin for the majority of the pregnancy for a back/hip issue that came during the delivery of #2.

All my kids were fine. As long as your OB knows what you are taking and prescribes it then it should be ok. If the tylenol 3 isn't working, ask for something stronger. They won't look at you like a druggie. Migraines suck and they suck even worse while pg.

I'll send positive thoughts your way.

 
Old 11-29-2008, 06:33 PM   #4
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thaele HB User
Re: migraines when pregnant/vent

Tylenol won't touch a migraine. Migraines are due to inflammation in blood vessels... tylenol doesn't have anything in them to stop that, only advils/ibuprohine are able to make any sort of difference with this. Your doctors are complete cracks. Sorry, but, if someone is suffering horrible migrianes for 10 years and they don't even think to check you over, send you for some tests and prescribe you something proven to actually help (not that 800MG ibuprophene crap), then they're crackpots.

I actually just very recently went to see my doc about migraines, and discussed treatments with her since I am TTC and hoping to be pregnant soon and my migraines appear to be returning and am worried. I found online that women who prior to being pregnant suffered migraines with auras are more likely to suffer them throughout pregnancy. I can't remember the % of sufferers but any sort of % sucks in my books!

My doc told me to stay away from advil, or ibuprohene.. from what I understand its due to it thinning your blood and when you're giving birth, that's definately not something you want. Also, migraine abortives are definately out of the question, as you've found out they're in category C.. my doctor is very well informed and honnestly she has yet to disappoint me. I trust her very much, and would like to pass on to you to make sure you know all the risks of anything you're taking during pregnancy. The only thing my doc told me I could take during pregnancy for migraines is tylenol. She agreed, it probably won't cut it, but to not harm the baby.. this is the only safe thing. It's unfortunate.. and hopefully your symptoms elleviate!!


Maybe once your baby is born you could look into preventative things. I went on propranolol for a few months (beta blockers), it was a miracle drug and I had very horrible migraine attacks much like what you describe. Puking, numb, pain, can't see, can't feel, the list goes on.. I know your docs are a bunch of morons so I'd suggest seeing someone else who will actually listen to you.. and if they still make you feel as though you're just being a baby about it all, don't let them! Demand the care you deserve! You know there's treatments that can help you.. and I promise you, you will feel like a whole new person once you can actually prevent the migraines instead of just aborting them once they happen. I've been 100% happier since I've been able to stop my migraines. I've had 2 minor ones that advil helped... then 1 major one.. all in 3 years. That's the equivelent of what I used to get in a week.

****

I just did a quick search.. wondering if constant migraines during pregnancies should be something to be concerned about.. here's an exerpt from an actual study..

"Women with persistent migraine during pregnancy should be aware of their risk factors, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, history of blood clots, heart disease, and prior stroke,’ said study author Dr. Cheryl Bushnell, of Duke University and Fellow of the American Academy of Neurology."

Now that I read this, and from your post.. if you are truely suffering so many migraines during pregnancies your docs should NOT be ignoring you and just trying to medicate you. Studies are done for a reason, doc's should be up on it, I could understand them maybe not knowing something but they shouldn't be disregarding you just because they don't know..

Migraines on their own won't cause harm to the baby.. but, if you're body is stressed out by consistent migraines it will cause other things like high blood pressure which can affect the baby.

Have you tried a naturapath maybe if those other docs aren't helping you? I'd definately go back to your OB and ask them if there should be any concern w/ the amount of migraines you're getting and they're duration. It just sounds like you're being downplayed.

Sorry this was so long.. I'm also very concerned about migraines for myself when I get pregnant.

 
Old 11-30-2008, 10:02 PM   #5
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magpie1970 HB User
Re: migraines when pregnant/vent

I have to disagree with a few things here. You can't trust every study that you find, there is always going to be one to contradict one or the other. However, as long of the OB is aware of the medical issues you are going through, you may just have to have more monitoring IF, and that's a big IF, you come down with other problems like high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes. The blood pressure and diabetes are all addressed in regular routine tests during pregnancy. But, your doctor will know what is best for you and the baby; ultimately, this is the one that you need to put trust in. If the benefits clearly outweigh the risks then a medication will be prescribed. There are those who are of the school of no meds during pregnancy, and those who will prescribe to use things in moderation. If the mother is going through stresses from headaches, that itself can have a negative effect on the baby, so you need to make sure that you are taken care of first.

There are a lot of stressors in pregnancy and you shouldn't have to deal with the migraines on top of everything else. I wish you both the best of luck!

Mags

The ibuprofin factor is due to thinning blood and if I remember correctly, you can take it up intil the 2nd trimester, but you should try to avoid it. Tylenol has NEVER done anything for me (for any kind of pain) so when I finally reached my breaking point I would pop an ibuprofin. Just make sure to discuss everything with your OB.

Quote:
Originally Posted by thaele View Post
Tylenol won't touch a migraine. Migraines are due to inflammation in blood vessels... tylenol doesn't have anything in them to stop that, only advils/ibuprohine are able to make any sort of difference with this. Your doctors are complete cracks. Sorry, but, if someone is suffering horrible migrianes for 10 years and they don't even think to check you over, send you for some tests and prescribe you something proven to actually help (not that 800MG ibuprophene crap), then they're crackpots.

I actually just very recently went to see my doc about migraines, and discussed treatments with her since I am TTC and hoping to be pregnant soon and my migraines appear to be returning and am worried. I found online that women who prior to being pregnant suffered migraines with auras are more likely to suffer them throughout pregnancy. I can't remember the % of sufferers but any sort of % sucks in my books!

My doc told me to stay away from advil, or ibuprohene.. from what I understand its due to it thinning your blood and when you're giving birth, that's definately not something you want. Also, migraine abortives are definately out of the question, as you've found out they're in category C.. my doctor is very well informed and honnestly she has yet to disappoint me. I trust her very much, and would like to pass on to you to make sure you know all the risks of anything you're taking during pregnancy. The only thing my doc told me I could take during pregnancy for migraines is tylenol. She agreed, it probably won't cut it, but to not harm the baby.. this is the only safe thing. It's unfortunate.. and hopefully your symptoms elleviate!!


Maybe once your baby is born you could look into preventative things. I went on propranolol for a few months (beta blockers), it was a miracle drug and I had very horrible migraine attacks much like what you describe. Puking, numb, pain, can't see, can't feel, the list goes on.. I know your docs are a bunch of morons so I'd suggest seeing someone else who will actually listen to you.. and if they still make you feel as though you're just being a baby about it all, don't let them! Demand the care you deserve! You know there's treatments that can help you.. and I promise you, you will feel like a whole new person once you can actually prevent the migraines instead of just aborting them once they happen. I've been 100% happier since I've been able to stop my migraines. I've had 2 minor ones that advil helped... then 1 major one.. all in 3 years. That's the equivelent of what I used to get in a week.

****

I just did a quick search.. wondering if constant migraines during pregnancies should be something to be concerned about.. here's an exerpt from an actual study..

"Women with persistent migraine during pregnancy should be aware of their risk factors, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, history of blood clots, heart disease, and prior stroke,’ said study author Dr. Cheryl Bushnell, of Duke University and Fellow of the American Academy of Neurology."

Now that I read this, and from your post.. if you are truely suffering so many migraines during pregnancies your docs should NOT be ignoring you and just trying to medicate you. Studies are done for a reason, doc's should be up on it, I could understand them maybe not knowing something but they shouldn't be disregarding you just because they don't know..

Migraines on their own won't cause harm to the baby.. but, if you're body is stressed out by consistent migraines it will cause other things like high blood pressure which can affect the baby.

Have you tried a naturapath maybe if those other docs aren't helping you? I'd definately go back to your OB and ask them if there should be any concern w/ the amount of migraines you're getting and they're duration. It just sounds like you're being downplayed.

Sorry this was so long.. I'm also very concerned about migraines for myself when I get pregnant.

Last edited by magpie1970; 11-30-2008 at 10:05 PM. Reason: to add information

 
Old 12-01-2008, 06:32 AM   #6
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thaele HB User
Re: migraines when pregnant/vent

Mag, you're right that there are many studies out that contradict each other. However, I DO think certain studies hold more weight then others. Such as the caffeine debate... up to 300mg is safe yet a new study states that any sort of caffiene will cause birth weight to lessen.. not even by enough to consider a baby underweight. These I don't let bother me, but it's when something either hasn't been studied, so it's unknown the effect (this would worry me much more then to take something that has been studied), or when something has been studied and has been linked to things.

I'm glad you mentionned the advil thing though, I never knew the 'why' lol. It's good to know however I think personally, my doc has suggested not to take it and she may have good reason depending on my own medical history and will trust her judgment. You are right that the OB, if she prescribes something, would only do so if they feel it is not going to risk the baby.

I think what bothered me most about the original post is that the doctor's have let her suffer with migraines for so long, then only prescribe her T3 which we both know won't help at all. They didn't prescribe anything else, quite possibly due to the fact that they may not be safe, however, I've heard of some people being prescribed stuff for migraines during pregnancy and it worked wonders for them. It wasn't the same type of stuff I had gone on, will look it up.. but it's safe from pregnancy.

Reagan's OB didn't prescribe her anything useful, just tylenol. We know this is safe in pregnancy but we also know it does nothing for a headache/migraine, and you're saying that if other drugs are better for her in the end then it's worth taking.. the problem is, she's not being given anything to help her ease her migraines . She's pretty much being ignored. I'll come back with that medicine I've heard of other women taking.. I looked it up just in case I might need it. Your doc may not know about it, but I doubt that's why you've been ignored for 10 years.

 
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