Hi, you mentioned that your pain management doctor told you that you metabolized medications at an ultra fast speed. I'm wondering how he was able to tell you that. Did he do some kind of test or did he just take your word for it. Because the first thing I need to have is absolute medical proof that I metabolize meds to fast and I require more than the normal dose. After have that, I should be able to focus more on a way to decrease the frequency or eliminate them altogether. Not to mention that I would get my entire life back!! Please let me know what your doctor said or did to confirm the rate that you metabolize medications. I would really appreciate any help you can give!!View Thread
I posted on her about two years ago about the problems I have with medications and I was hoping that someone would have some new ideas for me.
I am 24 years old and I have been dealing with chronic migraines, severe anxiety, and insomnia for almost a decade. I have tried almost every preventative medication they make for migraines as well as every abortive medication that they make for migraine patients. I have been to dozens of doctors ranging from primary care doctors to neurologists to migraine specialists and no one can find the cause of my migraines.
The main issue I have is that every time I start taking a new medication it either doesn't work at all or it only works for a few days and then it has no effect on me whatsoever. It's like my tolerance for medication is severely sped up and I don't know what to do anymore. When I was in the hospital to have my appendix removed they started me on a morphine drip to control the pain and after only three hours, I was curled up in a ball crying my eyes out because I was in so much pain. This was the first time I realized that something was wrong because having a morphine drip control the pain for only three hours and then stop working altogether is definitely not normal.
Almost every doctor I've gone to doesn't believe that I'm telling the truth and they all just say that I am looking to score narcotics (which is really ridiculous because narcotics are not a good treatment for migraines anyways) despite the fact that I have never once asked for narcotic painkillers. Since I'm so young and I look even younger than my real age, they all just think that I am an addict looking to get a fix. I have never been addicted to or abused narcotics or alcohol or anything, but because there are so many young people trying to get pain meds from doctors, they automatically stereotype me.
I can take 15 OTC tylenol pills and have them do nothing at all for pain. I can take 8 10mg vicodin and have them do absolutely nothing. I can take 15 50mg tramadol tablets and have them do nothing. Just recently, a friend tried to help when I was in the middle of a really really bad migraine and they gave me this stuff called roxycet in liquid form. I had never heard of it before but I was willing to try anything to get rid of the pain. The standard dose for it is a teaspoon every four hours and my friend is pretty much stoned out of his mind after he takes the standard dose. He gave me enough for a couple of doses just in case. I started off taking half a teaspoon because I am always extremely cautious when it comes to meds that I've never tried. The half teaspoon did absolutely nothing to help me and over the course of a couple hours I took 3 tablespoons altogether and it still had absolutely no effect on me. It didn't take the pain away, I didn't get drowsy at all...it basically felt as if I had taken nothing. I don't know what to do anymore. I have read that there is a genetics test available that can show how a person metabolizes medication but I'm afraid that it won't give me the proof I need to show the doctors that a regular dose for other people has absolutely NO effect on me. And it's not just pain medications that don't work for me, it's pretty much everything. Antibiotics don't work most of the time (they always have to put me on the strongest ones). Anxiety medications only work for a couple of days before they stop working. I've even had to increase the dose on my nausea medication because a regular dose stopped working.
I guess I just need to know what I'm supposed to do now...even if this test shows what I've been trying to tell them, how are they supposed to treat my pain? Will they even be allowed to prescribe the amount of medication that I need? I guess I'm just hoping that someone will have some advice for me that can help or that maybe someone else has this problem as well and can tell me what they did.View Thread
I too suffer from chronic migraines for almost 10 years and I'm only 24 years old so I know exactly how much you have been through and what it feels like. One question I have for you is if you have tried any of the medications that are used specifically for migraine (imitrex, frova, maxalt)? The only reason I ask is because narcotic pain meds do have really bad side effects for migraine patients. It causes you to have rebound headaches (which only feel like normal migraines but would not normally occur without the presence of narcotics in the body) and can also sometimes increase the pain you are feeling from the migraine instead of getting rid of it. I remember when I had my wisdom teeth taken out about two years ago and they put me on percocet to control the pain and I ended up have twice the amount of migraines that I would normally have. Granted for me, the painkillers took the pain away (well at least for the time they worked because a medication will only work for me for a few days and then it has absolutely no effect) but I ended up being in more pain because of the narcotic medication and its effects on my migraines.
As for the surgery, I know that they have just recently come out with a new surgery for migraines but that there are very few doctors that perform it. However, before you get the surgery, they require that you have tried every other treatment option available. They will ask if you have tried all of the preventative medications that are prescribed for migraines, all of the abortive medications for migraines, and they will also recommend that you try Botox injections for your migraines. If you haven't been through the whole botox thing, they won't even consider you for surgery because the concept was developed for patients that have done well with the botox treatments. The Botox treatments consist of 44 injections all over your head and neck. The concept is that the Botox is supposed to freeze the nerves and muscles so that the pain in them will decrease. I have been waiting to get these injections for a year now and they are pretty much the last thing available that I haven't tried yet. I don't know where you live but you should definitely look for a migraine clinic or a migraine specialist in your area. Neurologists are very familiar with migraines but they are not experts. There are a lot of doctors that only focus on migraines that will be a lot more knowledgeable and helpful for you. As far as information on the surgery and Botox injections, I know one doctor in my area that performs both. His name is Dr. David Branch and here is the website for his migraine practice. http://www.migrainereliefatlast.com/
Let me know if any of this helps you or if you have any other questions. I have a decade's worth of knowledge when it comes to migraines and I will help in any way that I can. Good luck and I hope you feel better soon!!
I have spent a lot of time researching how medication is metabolized in the body and how the body builds up a tolerance. There is a specific gene that can tell you how you metabolize medication. It is broken down into three categories: slow metabolism, normal metabolism, and rapid metabolism. Now alone this genetic test costs a couple hundred dollars because it is not covered by insurance. But the genetic profile that 23andme.com offers includes how a person reacts to medication and at this point all i'm really looking for is proof that I metabolize medication too quickly. Since I am 24 and I look even younger, most doctors just assume that I am looking to get narcotics (which is ridiculous because narcotics cause rebound headaches). But since there has been an increase in young adults trying to get narcotics, there is also a stereotype in place that affects the medical care that I am given. So really I just need to have proof that I really do metabolize medication that fast and that I'm not a drug addict. This genetic profile might also give me some insight into my migraines as well. It's not a guarantee or anything but it's definitely worth a shot considering that it's only $99.View Thread
Unfortunately I have tried every single abortive medication available and pretty much all of the preventative medications that are supposed to decrease the frequency. I have yet to find any medication that lasts more than a couple of days. That the whole point in all of this that I don't understand at all. Why do medications have basically no effect on me?View Thread
My problem is that I don't just build up a tolerance to meds after taking them for a while. One of two things happens with almost every single medication I have tried: either they don't work at all when I take them OR they stop working completely after a few times of using them. I have problems with pain killers, anxiety meds, anti-depressants, sleep meds, and even antibiotics. I've discussed this problem with multiple doctors and they either don't believe it or don't know of any ways that could possibly help with it. I have only ever found one medication for getting rid of my migraines that help. It's called Esgic Plus, and apparently its considered controlled even though it is one of those meds that is barely addictive. It has a tiny amount of butabital in it and from what my doctor says, they get afraid that people will misuse it or try to sell it. I mean I went to high school and I know the basics about drugs because it is a major discussion topic in adolescents, but I have never heard of anyone even wanting to buy this med. And having taken it myself, I really don't understand why anyone would want to because it doesn't give you a euphoric or relaxed feeling at all. My neurologist knows that this is the only medication that works for me right now and he knows that my tolerance for it is very high, but he still won't prescribe more than the normal dose. He is actually reluctant to give it to me at all. And I understand doctor's concern about dependence on meds and all that but when there is an actual NEED for it and they don't give you any kind of help with it, I just don't understand that. Thankfully I just found out that I'm going to be able to see a brand new neurologist in a couple of weeks and I'm getting a referral to a genetics counselor for the metabolism problem so hopefully that will help me with my situation. Also, they have tested my thyroid and they tell me that it is functioning normally so I guess that's not the problem. I just stress all the time about the problems I have with medications. I live in constant fear and terror that something will happen one day like a car accident or a bad fall that will leave me in a lot of pain. If something like that happens, it is incredibly likely that the doctors won't believe me about my tolerance problems and my pain won't be effectively treated. I have already had two minor surgeries and experienced more pain than I should have because doctors don't believe that I have any problems with meds. I just don't know how I am supposed to live with that fear.View Thread
I too have suffered with migraines since I was 16. The first thing I'm going to say is that you are incredibly lucky to find a doctor that cares enough to try everything to help you. My experiences with multiple doctors have not helped me at all. I have some major issues with medication because I metabolize them way too fast so most of them only work for the first few times I use them. Everyone else posts that pain meds aren't good for migraines and for the most part, that is true. However, what they don't understand is that sometimes, there is no other option. When you are in so much pain that you literally just want to die because of it and it occurs multiple times a week, you need that help. Most doctors cannot find the underlying cause of anyone's migraines and that is why the treatment is ALWAYS medication focused. Between preventative meds and emergent meds, you will probably end up trying everything they have on the market for migraines. My suggestion to you is to forget about the headache diary because I'm pretty sure that you have already done that multiple times. It's the first line of defense for all doctors that have a patient with migraines. You don't mention much about your experience with the preventative meds (like inderal or topamax) so that is definitely something you should continue to research. I have a very extensive list of preventative medications that I have tried that may help you and I will include it at the end of my post. Another thing you can do is more research. I'm sure that you have read all of the generic articles that they publish about migraines and they all say the same things, but I have found it useful to look more at blogs and forums that discuss people's personal experiences with medication. It's actually given me a lot of suggestions that I could pass on to my doc for new things to try. The emergent medication that I take is called Esgic Plus. It is a very old medication but I have found it incredibly effective considering the fact that nothing else works and that none of my doctors will prescribe me anything even remotely strong to help. You might try adding Esgic Plus into the cocktail of meds that you are using. It's not as strong as either of the meds your taking now, but maybe it will give you that extra boost you need to reduce some of the pain. Most of the doctors that treat migraines do not have personal and first-hand experience with migraines, so they do not understand the actual pain involved and what you go through on a day to day basis. You keep trying to have a normal life all the while knowing that it is practically impossible for you to do so because the pain is just too much to deal with. The most important thing to do is try to find that one preventative medication that can help. Even if it only takes away one migraine a week, it is still worth it. So don't give up on those!! I know that is gets frustrating trying all of these different medications, but eventually something will come along that will help. If your doctor can come up with a way to find the underlying cause then that is great, but until then, don't give up on medication. Don't let your doctors give up and don't ever stop looking for something that will help you. Once you lose the will to fight, then the pain will just get worse than ever.
*Some of these are for depression, some for anxiety, and some for other random conditions-if you haven't tried some of these then I think it might be worth it to give them a try-double check them with your doctor and get his opinion as well
I hope this helps in some way!! I know how frustrating migraines are and I hope you find something that works for youView Thread
That is exactly what I encounter with my doctors. They aren't even willing to discuss alternative plans to treat you. My doctor doesn't even want me on an emergent migraine med (which is what you take when you actually have one). He keeps giving me preventative meds but until i find one that works i need something to help me through the day. I want to find a preventative med that works more than anyone but there just aren't any that have helped yet. I completely get the concept of trying to find a medication that will reduce the amount of migraines i get, rather than just prescribe an emergent. but to me it seems stupid and cruel to expect me to just suffer with the migraines until he can think of a preventative med that will work. I have so many ER bills that it's ridiculous and the neurologist just keeps telling me to take the preventative meds and doesn't give me emergent meds (things like maxalt or imitrex). I met with my primary care doctor yesterday to discuss some new symptoms and to get the results of a sleep study she had ordered. She handed me two sheets of paper with the results and didn't even explain them (even when I asked her too), then we spoke a little about my migraine and getting a new neurologist. So when I brought up the fact that I had been nauseous, throwing up, and not able to eat much of anything. Also, I told her that I have started craving water all the time (which if u knew me, would be a thing to completely freak out about. I haven't willingly drank water in years because I can't stand drinking it) But lately it is all I want. After I explained all of this to her, she said "Well those symptoms would have you chasing in a completely different direction than where you are now. And I don't have any more time left" She actually told me that she didn't have time to listen to my new symptoms and that I needed to leave. I mean those symptoms plus the others i've had could be like diabetes or something and she wouldn't even talk to me. I'm just so frustrated with every doctor I have!!View Thread
What kind of medication is the pump used for. They very rarely give narcotics to migraine patients because they can cause rebound headaches (although I have to admit that almost every single non-narcotic medication that I have tried has also given me rebounds). The website mentioned something about morphine, but my pain is not constant every single day, although sometimes I feel like it is . What I really need is a medication that slows down the absorption of medications in my body or actual proof that my body requires more than the normal doses of medication that regular people require. Does anyone know of anything like that. I did hear about a genetic test called a p450 cytochrome test that is supposed to tell how my body metabolizes medication. However, I'm afraid that the test won't do me any good or that there is no way to slow that specific metabolism down. Not to mention that the genetic test is extremely expensive and is not covered by any insurance company. I just get so frustrated with the entire situation because my doctors don't believe me (mostly because I'm so young) and my body and tolerance for medication is just not like normal peoples. I just wish that I knew what to do to help myself. Everyone is always saying that you have to advocate for yourself, but I didn't go to medical school, I don't know everything about how the body and brain work, and I don't know what step to take next that might help me and no doctor seems to even care enough to help me. I just don't understand why doctors don't care anymore; they are supposed to help people and all mine do is accuse me and try to pass me off onto someone else. I would love to meet one of those doctors that you hear about that truly care about their patients and do absolutely EVERYTHING in their power to help them. Unfortunately, I haven't found one yet. I want to thank all of you for trying to help, I really appreciate it. You guys have no idea how much it means to me to know that there are some people out there that actually care.View Thread