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    Old 10-21-2004, 09:16 PM   #1
    hannasnana
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    Daughter suffering with daily migraines

    My daughter is 16 and started having daily migraines in March. We took her to a neurologist and all the regular tests were done and all came back normal. So, the only option is putting her on medications for the headaches. One of the medications he prescribed is Topomax. Has anyone used this medication and what is your thoughts on it. I found another board and all the posts were negative.

    We have tried several natural alternatives and we haven't tried long enough to see any results.

    Since this has been happening I have found that many teens have migraines at this time of their lives. Some grow out of them..........I have talked to lots of adults that had migraines in their teens and some grew out of the headaches with time. Others still have them.

     
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    Old 10-22-2004, 01:16 PM   #2
    carscheles
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    Re: Daughter suffering with daily migraines

    I wish I could tell you if your daughter will grow out of her migraines but everyone is different. I started getting migraines about the same age (hormonaly related) and continue to have them at 37. But they have changed. Unfortunately, mine became worse.

    When I was 16 I used to have a visual aura with every migraine and almost always vomited, I only had them a few times a year. Now I've traded the aura and vomiting for daily headaches and dizziness. Again, this is due to horomone changes. So we can't tell how your daughter will change over the years.

    As far as the Topamax, it worked pretty well for me but it does have pretty bad side effects. Don't be afraid to let the doctor know right away if she has any bad reactions to it. It's lots of trail and error to find the right medication combination.

    If you don't already know, rebound headache is a real concern. If she's taking too much over the counter medication, that may be why she's having these headaches daily. Some people (myself included) believe that the Triptans can cause rebound too - so be careful with them.

    There are lots of other infomative websites out there about migraines (do a google search).

    I wish you both the best of luck.

     
    Old 10-22-2004, 09:45 PM   #3
    hannasnana
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    Re: Daughter suffering with daily migraines

    Hi Carsheles,
    thanks for sharing your experience. I'm hesitant to put my daughter on the Topamax. One of the side effects mentioned on another board is short term memory problems......My daughter is already experiencing short term memory and some other problems with understanding what people are saying.....
    She doesn't take alot of medications right now because she doesn't like how they make her feel. She has had good luck with Axert.

     
    Old 10-23-2004, 03:57 AM   #4
    carscheles
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    Re: Daughter suffering with daily migraines

    Yes, Topamax can be a tough one. I had bad experience with the side effects at a very low dose. I had what my family called "Topamax Rage". I walked around angry for no reason at all.

    Funny that you say she's doing well with the Axert. It seems to be the only Triptan that I've had success with. I currently use it.

    You might want to discuss Prozac as a preventative. It has helped me a lot and the side effects are few. Prozac doesn't give you that sedated feeling that most other migraine medications give you. But on the down side, my side effect with Prozac is insomnia so I have to take Ambien daily in order to sleep.

    My current list of medications, after trying tons of others is:
    Daily preventative - Prozac
    Abortive - Axert
    Rescue - Fioricet
    Sleep aid - Ambien

    For me, these are the medications that have worked the best with the least side effects, but everyone is different. Your daughter might have to try many combinations before she finds what's best for her.

    Once again, good luck.

     
    Old 10-23-2004, 07:31 AM   #5
    mother of six
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    Re: Daughter suffering with daily migraines

    I also suffer from daily migraines. The blood vessels in my right eye break due to the pressure. My neurologist had put me on Topamax and I didn't find any relief from it. I also began to get extremely forgetful. My husband would have to help me with sentences because I was not able to think or remember simple words. I've stop taking it and feel so much better. I have found that Axert and Amerge work best. Amerge made me a little tired but that was it. Relief was almost immediate from both drugs and I don't suffer from "cherry eye" as my children put it, as much as I used too. Good luck!
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    Old 10-23-2004, 01:36 PM   #6
    hannasnana
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    Re: Daughter suffering with daily migraines

    It seems that a person that suffers regularly from migraines needs combinations of meds. Carscheles, what do you use the prozac for? I know it only as a anti-depressant. How does it help you? What do you mean by fioricet as a rescue?
    My daughter starts the day with a low headache. As the day progresses into the nite its usually at its worst.......We have been off of the axert for a few days because the we switched pharmacies and they had to order it.

    To you both, did you have problems with memory or (as I call it, brain scrambling) after the severe headaches started. I tell my daughter things and it gets mixed up in her brain. I think that might be part of her memory problem. Its almost like she has had brain damage. She has not done drugs..;o) She is a homeschooler and since being ill with the headaches she never leaves home very much anymore. She is studying at the local high school to get her GED. Sometimes she makes it twice a week. Also with the headaches she is nausiated alot.......dizzy and she seems to be having eye problems.

    Thanks for listening....;o) I feel helpless as a mom...........

     
    Old 10-24-2004, 09:30 AM   #7
    hannasnana
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    Re: Daughter suffering with daily migraines

    Mother of Six., Thank you for sharing. You have been more help than our neurologist. I'm afraid he doesn't explain very much. AND I know, thats the time to find a new Dr. I'm learning more from the internet than from him and paying him double a normal Dr.

    Won't I have to get a prescription of Amerge from a DR?
    Thanks!

     
    Old 10-24-2004, 10:21 AM   #8
    mother of six
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    Re: Daughter suffering with daily migraines

    You're welcome hannasnana . I'm glad I could help in some small way. I'm sure you have heard that certain foods trigger migraines. Your daughter may want to monitor her diet. Maybe it's something she is eating or drinking. I was just told the other day that aspertame in diet soda gives some people headaches. You will need a script for Amerge. I believe it's fairly new. My family doctor gives me the prescriptions because I no longer feel the need for a neurologist. I know how difficult it is to watch someone you love suffer needlessly. You sound like a very loving, caring and strong mother and like you I have found these boards to be very helpful. Best of luck to you and your daughter !
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    Old 10-24-2004, 10:28 AM   #9
    mother of six
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    Re: Daughter suffering with daily migraines

    I just thought of another remedy I have tried and you may want to look into, Botox. I believe it was approved for the use of migraines. I actually had it done once. I had a shot of it right into the side of my head. I did feel relief but I had some numbing in my face where I received the shot. Best of luck to you again!
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    Old 10-24-2004, 10:40 AM   #10
    carscheles
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    Re: Daughter suffering with daily migraines

    hannasnana,

    The doctors use a "step" approach in treating chronic migraines.

    The first step would be a daily preventative. There are actually no FDA approved migraine preventatives so the doctors prescribe medications that they know relieve migraines but are not actually considered migraine medications. These could be SSRIs (Prozac, etc), Anti-epileptic medications (Topamax, etc), Heart medications, and so on. The added benefit of giving Prozac is that there is medical evidence that a great number of people with migraines also have depression.

    Next step would be an abortive. You would take this on the days your daily preventative wasn't working. Usually these are in the drug class of Triptans. Some Triptan names are Axert, Amerge, Imitrex, Zomig, Frova, and so on.

    Third step would be a rescue medication. If you took your maximum dose of abortive and still had a whopper of a headache, this is where you take something to "rescue" you. Fioricet is a mild sedative, acetaminiphin, and caffiene combination. Fioricet/Fiorinal (aspirin instead of acetaminiphin) are the most common rescue medications for migraine because they seem to work for most migraine patients. Other rescue medications would be your pain killers & muscle relaxers.

    Obviously the most important step is to find a great preventative which would cut down on the use of abortives and rescue meds.

    Yes I have memory problems, dizzy problems, and ocassional naseau too. When you say she has eye problems do you mean the headache is in her eye area or do you mean that her vision gets distorted? I am one of those people who have Classic Migraine which means I get a visual aura (bright shining wavy lines) before a migraine.

    Has she had a CT Scan yet? I would request one if she hasn't - just to rule out anything else.

     
    Old 10-24-2004, 01:48 PM   #11
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    Re: Daughter suffering with daily migraines

    You both have been so helpful! Yes, a head CT scan was the first test our GP ordered. It came back normal. She also had a blood panel, MRI, and spinal X-ray that all came back with normal results.

    We have noticed that different foods trigger an allergy reaction which triggers a migraine. Interesting, that these foods never bothered her before. They are some of the typical ones, strawberries, peanuts, large amt of chocolate (whole candy bar vs. some chips) refried beans.....etc...When I start to see her ears turn red it is a signal for me that she is having a reaction so she takes zertec which really helps..........then she takes an axert to head off the headache. We have found that helps........We are keeping these foods from her. I will take her off the diet sodas and see if that helps.....

    I think saying "scrambled brains" is a great description for whats happening with her. She had this starting without any medications help. Thats why my husband and I don't want to put her on the Topomax.

    I will keep tuning in her for suggestions. I'm going to try a few natural alternatives too. Thanks!!!!!! ;o)

     
    Old 10-24-2004, 02:43 PM   #12
    carscheles
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    Re: Daughter suffering with daily migraines

    I'm curious, did she have an EEG? Ususally the first medication the doctor will as a preventative would be something that covers what the medicaiton was intended for in the first place. Like maybe her doctor suspects that she is having mini seizures? Just a thought????

     
    Old 10-24-2004, 06:33 PM   #13
    hannasnana
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    Re: Daughter suffering with daily migraines

    I left that out, yes, she had a sleep eeg too, the results were normal. There is a history of migraines in the women on my husband's side of the family. I remember his mom having many migraines. I wish she were still here on this earth to ask her about them. I always assumed they were from allergies.......

     
    Old 10-25-2004, 03:01 AM   #14
    carscheles
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    Re: Daughter suffering with daily migraines

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by hannasnana
    I left that out, yes, she had a sleep eeg too, the results were normal.
    I believe the doctor suspects she MAY be having mini seizures. That is why he/she ordered the EEG. An EEG, especially a sleep EEG, isn't a test every migrainer gets unless something else is suspected. I only had an awake EEG and that was because of my cognative problems too.

    If you look in the epilepsy forums you will find out that it is very common for an EEG to show up as normal for people with seizure disorders.

    Seems her doctor is prescibing Topamax just to be on the safe side (in case she is having mild seizures that aren't dxd yet). There are other anti-epileptic medications that are used as migraine preventatives that you might want to discuss with her doctor.

    As far as vitamin therapy, my Neurologist recommended Coenzyme Q10 - which had a slight effect and another multi vitamin (can't remember the name - couldn't find it in my area).

    Does your daughter keep a migraine diary? Seems like she has a lot of food triggers. The diary could help figure out if there are other triggers, like homone fluctuations, changes in weather, etc.

     
    Old 10-25-2004, 09:29 AM   #15
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    Re: Daughter suffering with daily migraines

    My daughter has had Migranes since about age 9. She has a few each year they always repeat the same behavior. She has tried the medication you use up your nose. It didn't help at all now she takes a pill that melts in her mouth. The key is to get her to take the medication the moment she thinks she's having the migrane. She does get the visual aura, but at times she will second guess its the sun or a bright light or whatever. The last migrane she took the medication right the second she felt she might even be getting one she went and laid down and it didn't come. So hopefully we have found a way to keep them at bay.

     
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