5/26/08 #9 - Is there effective treatment for a 9 year old with migraines?

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  • Full Question:
    My 9 year old daughter was diagnosed with migraines after almost a year of tests for other things. She was given Zofran for nausea. But I was told there was not another real treatment for someone her age. The doctor said to try and treat it with caffeine and sleep. My daughter has headaches about 4 to 5 times a week and debilitating migraines about 1 every 10 days that last up to 3 days. Is there really no treatment for her? 3jsmom
     

     

    Answer:

     

    Dear 3jsmom;

     

    There are indeed other options for treating your daughter. What was the diagnosis for her frequent "headaches?" Do you give her anything for those headaches? If so, you need to know that most medications given for headaches, if given more than two or three days a week, can compound the problem by causing medication overuse headaches, aka rebound. See Medication Overuse Headache - When the Remedy Backfires for more information on this.

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    With headaches so frequent, it's time to look at preventive measures. There are several options generally considered safe for children including propranolol and periactin. These medications are taken daily to prevent the headaches and may also help reduce the frequency and duration of her Migraines.

     

    When a Migraine occurs, there are several options. Relieving the nausea and promoting sleep is one of them. Zofran is, however, only one of several medications that can be used for this, and it's the most expensive. Reglan is often a good agent for this purpose. At the age of nine, some doctors sometimes prescribe a low-dose triptan such as the low-dose Imitrex nasal spray.

     

    Given the lack of good information you've been given, consider consulting a pediatric Migraine and headache specialist. There's a link below to our directory of patient recommended specialists, including pediatric specialists.

     

    Good luck,
    John Claude Krusz and Teri Robert

     

    If you need to find a headache and Migraine specialist, please see our listing of patient recommended specialists.

     

    Another good source of information and support is our forum. To post to the forum, you'll need to register, even if you're already registered on the main section of our site. You can use the same email address and password for both registrations.

     

     

    About Ask the Clinician:

    Dr. Krusz is a recognized expert in the fields of headache and Migraine treatment and pain treatment. Each week, he and Lead Expert Teri Robert, team up to answer your questions about headaches and Migraines. You can read more about Dr. Krusz or more about Teri Robert.

     

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    We hope you find this general medical and health information useful, but this Q & A is meant to support not replace the professional medical advice you receive from your doctor. For all personal medical and health matters, including decisions about diagnoses, medications and other treatment options, you should always consult your doctor. See full Disclaimer.

     

    © Teri Robert and J.C. Krusz, 2008.

    Last updated May 25, 2008.

     

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Published On: May 25, 2008