Top 75 Migraine and Headache Questions, #73

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  • Full Question:

    I've had a chronic migraine for about 10 days with pretty constant pain over my left eye. For the last five days I've also had constant facial pain along the trigeminal nerve on the left side of my face.

    Normally during a migraine attack I experience facial numbness and partial paralysis, my left eye droops and I slur my words because my tongue gets "thick". This pain is new and unrelenting. It is ranges between 2 and 6 on a pain scale and I feel it mostly along my cheekbone, upper lip, jaw line, and partially down my neck. I also have a little of this same sensation on the right side just the cheekbone.
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    What is going on? How can I make this stop? My normal meds are not working and I don't want to keep taking pain meds daily or I will rebound. I take 100mgs of Topamax daily as preventative, with Midrin, Fioricet and Vicodin as rescue meds. I'm allergic to triptans. What can I do? Allison.


    Dear Allison;
    First, have you been to your doctor? If a Migraine lasts longer than 72 hours, it's time to call your doctor or go to  the ER because Migraines lasting that long put you at increased risk of stroke.

    Midrin, Vicodin, and Fioricet all contain acetaminophen. If you've been taking them for 10 days, there's a good chance that your Migraine is now compounded by rebound. Alternating these medications does not work to avoid rebound.

    It's impossible to determine "what's going on" via the Internet. You need to see your doctor to address this Migraine, abortives, and perhaps discuss better Migraine management in general. To be allergic to all 7 of the triptans would be very rare. There are also ergotamine abortives such as DHE and Migranal.

    Good luck,
    John Claude Krusz and Teri Robert

    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 Patient Teri Robert, team up to answer your questions about headaches and migraines. You can read more about Dr. Krusz or more about Teri Robert. If you have a question for this section of our site, please click HERE. Accepted questions will be answered by publishing the answers here. No questions will be answered privately.

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Published On: February 17, 2007