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"Long Term Opiates for Chronic Migraines/Headaches?"

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Brenda14 Click to EMail Brenda14Click to check IP address of the poster Feb-07-05, 06:41 PM (CMT)
"Long Term Opiates for Chronic Migraines/Headaches?"
After 8 weeks of status migraine and several shots of morphine to try to get the migraine to end, an injection of 30mg morphine finally knocked the pain down a couple of notches--from a 10+ to about a 7.

I'm somewhat worried, though, because in past status migraine episodes when a shot worked, it would knock the migraine out almost completely.

There would be a few days of residual pain, but not at the level that I'm currently experiencing. I still have a LOT of pain at the back of my neck, a burning sensation at the back of my eyes, nausea, and sensitivity to light and sound. I took the 30 mg morphine 2 days ago, and still have way too much pain.

In the past, if a shot worked, it took away all of the nausea and other migraine symptoms, leaving just a little bit of pain at the back of the neck--maybe about a 3 or 4 or so. After a couple of days, I would be completely pain-free.

I'm worried that I might be stuck with a constant migraine. I was pain-free before this migraine started, but now I'm afraid that after 8 weeks of constant migraine, my body has forgotten how to be pain-free.

Maybe I've gone into chronic daily headache, which would be a nightmare.

My neurologist specifically told me that while it's okay to take narcotics for migraine, it's "not okay" to take narcotics for CDH. He'd want to take me off the narcotics, which are the only thing that's ever worked for me. I don't even know what he WOULD prescribe, since I've already run the gamut of abortives and preventatives, with no success.

When my neuro first prescribed Oxycontin for my prolonged migraines, he told me that he "wouldn't want to have me on it all the time". At the time, I thought that was fine, since I wasn't in pain all the time. Now, I really might need to take some kind of long-term pain medication.

I found out that my neuro DOES prescribe Oxycontin long-term for some of his patients, but I'm not sure if they are migraine patients. Maybe they ARE migraineurs, though, because when I brought out my prescription for Oxycontin to the receptionist, she asked me if I was one of the patients who was on Oxycontin all the time.

I can't understand why my neuro would prescribe Oxycontin long term for other patients, but not for me. I've been seeing him for 12 years--I don't know how much longer he expects me to have to suffer. How is a person supposed to live with chronic pain?

I hope this migraine just goes away, and soon!

I'm so glad I found this forum, a place where we can talk about this awful disease. My best wishes for pain-free days for everyone!



 Table of contents

RE: Long Term Opiates for Chronic M..., moogle77, Feb-08-05, (1)
RE: Long Term Opiates for Chronic M..., mgb, Feb-08-05, (8)
RE: Long Term Opiates for Chronic M..., jessipo, Feb-08-05, (2)
RE: Long Term Opiates for Chronic M..., BassaPlaya, Feb-08-05, (3)
RE: Long Term Opiates for Chronic M..., Anna's Mom, Feb-08-05, (4)
RE: Long Term Opiates for Chronic M..., BassaPlaya, Feb-08-05, (5)
RE: Long Term Opiates for Chronic M..., allecia, Feb-08-05, (6)
RE: Long Term Opiates for Chronic M..., Sandi, Feb-08-05, (7)

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Messages in this topic

moogle77 Click to EMail moogle77Click to view user profileClick to check IP address of the poster Feb-08-05, 02:20 AM (CMT)
1. "RE: Long Term Opiates for Chronic Migraines/Headaches?"
Both my GP and my neurologist disagree with the theory that you should not use opiates for chronic migraines.

For some people, opiates are the ONLY thing they have left that helps them. The treatment of pain should be a very high priority in those cases where the patient has tried everything without finding any relief.

In my case, I am allergic to triptans and nothing below Percocet would touch my pain. My neurologist sent me to a pain specialist who recommended 2mg Dillaudid (hydromorphone) and 20mg Roxanol (liquid morphine) for my pain.

I have been on this for almost two years now and have not run into ANY dependance or tolerance issues. I would recommend that you do some research and present the facts to your doctor. If he doesn't respond, then maybe try finding a doctor who does?



mgb Click to EMail mgbClick to check IP address of the poster Feb-08-05, 09:17 PM (CMT)
8. "RE: Long Term Opiates for Chronic Migraines/Headaches?"
I've had two neuros that do not like the idea of using opiates for migraines. They want to use other treatments as preventatives to help prevent major pain.

I know this isn't much help when you are hurting, but another approach or second opinion is your right.


jessipo Click to EMail jessipoClick to check IP address of the poster Feb-08-05, 09:25 AM (CMT)
2. "RE: Long Term Opiates for Chronic Migraines/Headaches?"
Thank your stars that he won't prescriby oxy for you all the time. See if there's another narc that you can take. Almost any other narc is less addictive than oxy. Oxy is up there with Heroin as far as addiction is concerned and is a reall b-tch to try to kick.

I hope you'll feel better soon, though, and won't have to have any meds. Take care. :S




BassaPlaya Click to EMail BassaPlayaClick to view user profileClick to check IP address of the poster Feb-08-05, 10:52 AM (CMT)
3. "RE: Long Term Opiates for Chronic Migraines/Headaches?"
HI Brenda,
As I'm sure you have read, I've been on narcotics for my migraines for 4 years.
I'm allergic to Triptans and all other options were exausted first before he prescribed narcotics.

I take Anexsia(hydrocodone 7.5/325), I get a three month supply (quantity of 180) from my doctor. He faxes the scrip into a mail order pharmacy. It's great. Never have to worry about running out.

Those have been the most effective. I've tried Percocet but they gave me heartburn for some reason the Anexsia don't.

All I can say is be insistant with your doctor about getting pain relief. And maybe even ask him why others get the long term prescriptions.



Anna's Mom Click to EMail Anna's MomClick to check IP address of the poster Feb-08-05, 02:20 PM (CMT)
4. "RE: Long Term Opiates for Chronic Migraines/Headaches?"
Anna's former neurologist (in private practice) resigned from his practice to go into research, due to high malpractice insurance rates in Illinois.

He was board certified in neurology and internal medicine. A nationally renowned migraine specialist who was an expert on rebound. He had 25 years experience in treating migraine patients.

These are his words:

"I don't think the average physician or pain specialist realizes how much chronic pain reduces of eliminates the person's quality of life.

The appropriate use of Class II narcotics is entirely appropriate with a thorough evaluation, when other standard agents have failed.

Without the availablity of Class II agents, many patients would be in the emergency room (often receiving inadequate care) or would not have been able to successfully complete high school, college, professional/graduate school, or pass the bar exam."

He told us long term opiates are not always successful in treating migraine pain (migraine is a stubborn beast).

But at least he and other doctors give/gave Anna the chance to try them when everything else fails.



BassaPlaya Click to EMail BassaPlayaClick to view user profileClick to check IP address of the poster Feb-08-05, 05:58 PM (CMT)
5. "RE: Long Term Opiates for Chronic Migraines/Headaches?"
They sure work for me.
I haven't had any problems with them and for me, there are no other options. Unless of course I want to be in continous pain.



allecia Click to EMail alleciaClick to view user profileClick to check IP address of the poster Feb-08-05, 06:10 PM (CMT)
6. "RE: Long Term Opiates for Chronic Migraines/Headaches?"
good lord,
I feel for you sweetie,
I think it's time to call in another doctor.
nobody should put up with this kind of pain..
your suffering is not acceptable in this modern world of full of modern medicine..

find a pain specialist; an anthesisiologist on the intenet that is near where you live; you can find this through the pain society.

I wish I could give you more..
you have to be your own advocate about getting your pain relieved..
fight, fight, fight..
take my advice or leave it at the door.
take care honey, you are not alone.. in that dark room of pain, I'm right there with you..


Sandi Click to EMail SandiClick to check IP address of the poster Feb-08-05, 09:10 PM (CMT)
7. "RE: Long Term Opiates for Chronic Migraines/Headaches?"
I too suffered for a long time with CDH and unrelenting migraines ...that preventatives were useless against..and I ran thru the a huge list of drugs.....and I finally resorted to being placed on 50 mcg Duragesic patches...(they have Fentanyl in them).

I change my patch ever y 72 hours and have had little trouble with them. You do become physically dependent on them hoswever.

They release a steady release of pain control..without having to got thru my very tender tummy.

I use Vicodin and Toradol pills for breakthru.
I have tordol shots that my hubby can give me for the really bad one...I have phenergan pills and also phen. wrist gel on hand ...if the i m TOrdol can't get rid of it..I can go to the ER and get an iv shot of Toradol and Phen and it knocks me right out. I sleep almost the whole next day..which by then is what I need to do.

I have always been on the 50..I have never upped my dose. I know I would have to go inpatient to get off of them...withdrawl is real bad.

I have been on them for 2.5 years..and have gone from 3 inpatient stays per year..to none since I went on these..

I would do it again in a heart beat..but it was a committment for both my family and my dr.

I don't see a neuro..I have the best luck with my family gp..who is a great guy.

My best to you in your quest for pain control...



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