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Doctors' Answers to "Frequently Asked Questions" - Nortriptylene

These comments are made for the purpose of discussion and should NOT be used as recommendations for or against therapies or other treatments. An indi vidual patient is always advised to consult their own physician.

[posted 10/15/1999]
Question: I have had migraines since the tender age of 12. I have worn glasses
since 14. I have a history of seeing doctors for my childhood disturbances
and also for my on-going adult emotonal health.
I presently do take a variey of medications, the doctor is about to place me
on a Beta Blocker. However , he claims it will most likely interfere with my
depression and with winter upon us I am concerned. Yes, the migraines are bad.
I was in the emergenccy dept. to be given a drug called
Torodal and gravel in needles. I am in day 8 of the migrain
it just won't go away. It has subsided a little, I am on other
medication but truly do not feel as though they are the cause.
I also got new glasses too. I am on Prozac 20mg 3X dly.
Clonazapam 0.05mg 2X at bed, rantidine 150mg 2X dly,
Carbamazepine 200mg 3X dly, Ventalin inhaler, Beclovent inhaler
and Feverfew a natural product in capsule form.
I have eliminated tylenol\\#3 forever. I am allergic to ASA and
IBPROPHINS and the N-SAID family of drugs.
What are my migraine pill options now ? Please help me !

Answer: Two possibilities. One is preventive which your doctor is undertaking. Of interest is the fact that nortriptylene(an antidepressant) is often used to prevent migraines-have you tried this with your depression? Also, neurontin is sometimes helpful as is dilantin in occasional patients. I would be reluctant to use beta blockers with your depression, but it may not worsen the depression and is worth a try since they are very effective in migraines. Secondly, are the treatment drugs like Zomig and Imitrex- I assume you are using these with the onset of the migraines? Very, very effective to abort one as it starts. Daily caffeine also helps most migraine sufferers, sometimes even taken as pill(excedrin for example).

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