Dr. Stephen Silberstein is one of the most published migraine neurologists in the country. His comments below are honest and very important for chronic migraine sufferers to understand.

Chronic migraines sufferers “over-medicate” with either prescription pain-relieving medications or over the counter medications containing an OTC pain killer with added caffeine. Over-use of the medications cause additional “rebound” headaches and actually worsen migraine frequency. Many sufferers will use the medication to eliminate or reduce the pain of a current migraine only to have another occur in the next day or two.

Dr. Silberstein then goes on to say, “Migraine prevention products are grossly under-used. The most popular prescription migraine prevention medicines are associated with significant side effects such as temporary memory dysfunction and slurring of speech which cause many people to discontinue their use.”

Preventing Migraines Better Than Treatment

(United Press International via COMTEX) — A migraine expert said Thursday…Therapy to prevent migraines can be more effective than attempting to treat the pain.

Dr. Stephen Silberstein, director of the Jefferson Headache Center and professor of neurology at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, made the statement during an American Medical Association briefing in New York.

Silberstein said migraine treatment has come a long way during the past five years, with a key treatment factor being the development of triptans — drugs capable of combining with neuronal receptors in the brain to initiate drug actions.

Said Silberstein: “One of the greatest bugaboos we see every day in headache centers is patients with chronic daily or near-daily headache, who are overusing medication. It is our most common problem.

“These patients have often not responded to treatment and in an attempt to treat themselves, actually make the problem worse. This is not addiction or an attempt to get ‘high’; rather, it is motivated by the patient’s desire to relieve pain and dysfunction.”

He added, “Migraine preventive therapy is grossly underused.”

About 25 to 30 million Americans experience migraine headaches and many more are undiagnosed.

Preventive (also called prophylactic) treatment of migraines is a very important component of migraine management and migraine relief. Preventive regimens range from taking nutritional supplements such as magnesium, riboflavin, and feverfew, to lifestyle alterations and avoiding migraine triggers.

 

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