New research, funded by the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (one of the National Institutes of Health) shows that the anticonvulsant medication gabapentin (brand name Neurontin ), which is used for certain types of seizures, can be an effective treatment for the pain and other symptoms associated with fibromyalgia . In this randomized, double-blind clinical trial of 150 people (90 percent women) with fibromyalgia, Lesley M. Arnold, M.D., director of the Women's Health Research Program at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, and her colleagues found that those taking 1,200 to 2,400 mg of gabapentin daily for 12 weeks displayed significantly less pain than those taking a placebo. Patients taking gabapentin also reported significantly better sleep and less fatigue. For the majority of participants, the drug was well tolerated. The most common side effects included dizziness and sedation, which were mild to moderate in seve...
I continue to have about 8 major migraines each month, but since I started gabapentin (now 2400mg per day) I have not had an aura or pain between successfully treated headaches (Migranal) I had frequent aura with or without headache until I started this drug and scalp pain between headaches. Can gabapentin stop aura? Thanks. Jocelyn.
If you have an aura, you have a Migraine, regardless of whether it includes a headache or not. It would appear that gabapentin is helping reduce the severity of your Migraines, but isn't actually preventing them. In situation such as this one, your doctor may want to add a second medication to the mix or discontinue the gabapentin and try something different.
In either case, you need to consult your physician about this.
Good luck, John Claude Krusz and Teri Robert
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So, what is a doctor to do about the abuse of pain-killers? If doctors begin to act like police officers, then the doctor-patient relationship suffers. But doctors can keep an eye out for certain risk factors which may indicate a current or future problem with narcotics in a given patient. A recent article in the "Annals of Internal Medicine" discusses such risk factors, which include mood disorders, other addictions, younger age, and male sex. Unfortunately, there are few novel treatments for pain, and therefore doctor and patient are often left only with narcotics, which have been around for a long, long time. It would be helpful to have other weapons in the fight against chronic or recurrent pain, weapons which are less addictive. In the meantime, industry and the medical profession are looking at ways to combat abuse of prescription pain-killers. For example, Oxycodone will soon be available embedded in a viscous gel. In this form, the pill cann...
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