Journal of Migraine Sufferers


I have spent the past few days reading through the case histories here, and all I can say is, Thank God! I have felt so alone with this hellish affliction, and now I see just how many others have shared so many of my experiences, it really is a huge relief. Even tho I have friends who get them, they are on a different level, and I always feel like a whiner. I never knew that so many others had the horrible, degrading times at the ER that I have had, from being offered a Tylenol to being told that the ER is NOT the place to go for a "simple headache". Forgive me, but I would give anything for those heartless people to get hit hard with one and then check with them! I left the ER in tears, untreated, the last time, and that was over two years ago. I was way too humiliated to go thru it again, so instead I have just suffered...

I,too, have been on tons of medications, both preventative and painkillers, and almost all have offered little or no relief. Imitrex does nothing for me, so at the moment, I take Phenergyn at nite and Fiorional for pain. Again, the big problem is I never have enough of the Fiorinal when I really need it, and its like pulling teeth to get more. I do understand the addiction theory, but as others have saidhere, I only use it for headaches and that is all, I am not worried about anything other than killing the pain so I can be a mom to my 17 mo. old son, and also my teenage son.

I've had these for 9 years now, in fact they worsened with my last pregnancy! My husband tries to be sympathetic, but I think he gets fed up with hearing "I've got another headache" all the time, and I feel guilty with my kids too, when I just can't deal.

Anyway, if anyone knows anything thats like Fiorinal that I can buy OTC, please E-mail me: That would give me HUGE peace of mind, so I can only pray it exists...

Thanks for listening, and for allowing me to read your stories and feel a little less alone, coming across this site is a terrific thing for me, as I read, I keep saying,"yes, yes,exactly" over and over, still can't believe there are so many of us out there!!!

Take care, and may you have a pain-free Thanksgiving!!


Have you, or someone you know, tried the new Imitrix nasal spray? It's almost as effective as the injections and much easier to deal with except for one problem. After 5-10 minutes, it runs from your nasal cavity into your throat, the taste makes you gag and barf! The research I've read says this is the most common side effect (experienced by 25% of the participants - just my luck) Do you know anyone that has a good suggestion to remedy this? I've tried drinking lots of water, chewing gum and using mouthwash. It's still a pretty unpleasant solution. I'm almost considering going back to the injections (yuk!) Any help is greatly appreciated!

In response to the 45 year old woman who suffered from severe daily migraines, I've had a very similar experience. I have a few suggestions and a few questions. First, you could try Nortriptyline instead of Amitriptyline. It won't make you tired and should be just as effective. I take a 100mg a day. My dr. took a nortriptyline level and found I was metabolizing it faster than usual, hence the high dosage.

Regarding the magnesium, you can get 500mg magnesium gluconate tablets for a very reasonable price (much cheaper than GNC) from Freeda's Vitamins in New York, call 1-800-777-3737, it's product code 0175.

How much calcium is in your multi-vitamin and how much extra calcium do you take on a daily basis?

Thanks for your help and suggestions!

I'm 58. Had migraines since I was 17, except during pregnancies at 26 and 28, and 5 years when I participated in yoga for relaxation. I have had an MRI, my "brain came back negative" according to the young girl in the doctor's office. I've taken every drug available for migraines. Have used all Imitrex with great success with injections. Pills and nasal spray do not work for me. My only complaint with injections now is that I would rather use a regular syringe instead of the kit that comes with the prescription. The nasal spray leaves such a foul taste for hours that it's hard to stomach. Most often my migraines are triggered by odors. The heavy perfumes and colognes cause immediate headaches with vomiting--some lasting days. When shopping I enter department stores with my hand held up and great avoidance to prevent being sprayed with some exotic fragrance. No doubt stress causes some of my headaches as I am office manager for a large manufacturing concern requiring attention to many people and situations. Sometimes I can even laugh at experiences that occur during an attack, but never when I'm in the middle of one. Will continue to read all messages now that I've found you.

Dear Ronda:

I've been a migraine sufferer for many years (diagnosed at about 10 years of age).

I was put on cafergot (sp?) and tylenol 3, both of which made me extremely sick to my stomach. When all else failed it was off to the hospital for a shot of demerol. I am currently taking Imitrix which works, but only if I lie down for a couple hours after taking it. It sure beats missing day after day of work.

One of the reasons I am writing is to let you know that I have found something I consider to be a god-send. A fellow migraine sufferer let me know of a simple vitamin, that if taken daily seems to prevent migraines. It's chelated magnesium, (chelated meaning it has an easily digested vegetable coating over the tablet). Since I started taking it every day, I've gone from 2 or 3 severe migraines per month down to 1 every 3 or 4 months. It's cheap and guess what, no side effects. I encourage other migraine sufferers to give it a try. It sure helped me, I hope it can help many others!

p.s. I thoroughly enjoyed your site! Keep up the great work and thanks for your support.

Ontario, Canada

Well here goes,

I am a 41 year old woman that has had headaches approx. 29 years. They were a daily thing when I was younger and I thought that everyone had them. They were semi managable until my 2nd pregnacy. They became daily and very strong. I of course could get anything for the pain then. After my son was born it is still kind of a blurr. But I remember spending days and sometimes weeks in bed with the pain. My Amother, finally dragged me to the hospital for a shot. The Doctor was a friend of my parents so as he was talking to mom he forgot to order anything with the Demerol to keep me from being sick. I spent the next 20 minutes throwing up and when the compazine kicked in I already had my headache back.

I have tried it all, with a large variety of different doctors and even a headache clinic in SFO. They were special ! They did thousands of dollars of tests at MY expense and ended up giving me a tranquilizer. Thanks guys! I have also done Bio Feedback, accupuncture stress management etc. What a crock.

Sorry if I sound bitter but at this point in time I have about had it with Doctors, and my ADad is one!

Right now I am taking fiorinal, and fiorinal with codiene to the tune of three apiece every day. Have been doing this for five years with a break every 3 months of a week or more to asure myself that I am not addicted ! Used to go in for a Demerol shot every other month or so, but stopped that because I got that look , and the the lecture " You are taking alot of pills, do you know that they are addicting? " I just can't handle those looks anymore, and then you get the mean nurses that just get great pleasure from giving you a hard injection that bruises for a couple of weeks. Along with the Dr prescribes 50mg of Demerol which only last until the ride home. My husband had to drag me down to urgent care last month after 6 months of not having a shot. He really layed into the nurse and doctor about me suffering because they treat me like an addict.

Well thats my story all I want is to mange the pain so I can have a life again. Help!

Write me at

I am a 28 year old migraine sufferer. I have been to several inpatient headache clinics and have been on every migraine treatment known to man. I know also that it can be so difficult knowing that someone you care so deeply for is suffering. I am not a doctor, but, with all of my dealings with neurologists, pain specialists, general physicians, physical therapist, psychotherapists,etc....I do have some ideas.

It sounds as if depression may be a component of your sister-in-law's migraine. Has she tried any treatment for depression?...the treatment for migraine and depression are essentially the same. She may also want to ask her physician about Depakote, it is an anti-seizure med that helps also with migraines. Tegretol is another med that works both for siezures and migraines. Both these medications are also mood stabilizers.

Most importantly is to look closely at the demorol and morphine injections. I was surprised to hear she is able to self medicate with these heavy medications. Not only do they feed into her possible depression, but they are highly addictive. I wonder about her safety on these meds as it is highly dangerous to drive,etc while on these meds. Also, frequent injections can cause frequent headaches called rebounds.

The best thing you could do for her would be to encourage her to get help at a migraine pain management center. In-patient hospitalization did wonders for me. I wish you luck!



I have been a migraine sufferer since I was about 15. They seem to be related to my menstrual cycles. Migraine when I was ovulating & migraine the day before my period started. I am now 47 and beginning peri-menopause, and the migraines are really bad! Just like my menstrual cycles there is no rhyme or reason to when I will get a headache. Imitrex is a wonder drug, but my doctor seems reluctant to prescribe too much because of heart desease in my family and mild hypertension. He did prescribe Tylenol with Codeine which helps a little, but makes me really woozy. This past year I have been receiving depropravera shots (a birth control drug). Completely stops period. I have had fewer migraines with this treatment. But, now my doctor wants to stop me on this drug too. Anyone with information or similar experience would be appreciated.