Marijuana for migraines

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Marijuana for migraines

Post  Migrainegirl on Fri Apr 06, 2012 5:41 pm

http://www.ocregister.com/opinion/marijuana-347866-migraine-medical.html

Seriously, has anyone found that pot is successful at treating migraines?
I have not heard anyone here say this worked.

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Re: Marijuana for migraines

Post  charmed quark on Mon Apr 09, 2012 7:47 am

As I posted in the past, it helps with mine, more as a preventative than an abortant.

However, in my case the migraines may be triggered by my neck and shoulder spasticity and spasms ( due to severe cervical stenosis, apparently). Cannabis HAS been shown, in a number of double blind, cross-over studies, to be effective for spasticity, spasms and neuropathic pain.

I don't use the herbal variety - while my home state passed a medical marijuana law over 2 years ago, the governor has been trying to prevent its implementation so it is not yet legal.

Insteal I use the FDA approved pharmaceutical, dronabinol ( brand name Marinol). In some ways it is not as effective as the natural stuff and seems to have more side effects, but it is better than nothing.

My insurance company recently decided to cut me off and I had to appeal. They accepted my appeal because the insurance company physician said he had reviewed the scientific literature and found that cannabinoids ( such as the THC in Marinol) WERE effective for my type of conditions.

So if even the insurance company is saying it is effective ....

-Pete

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Re: Marijuana for migraines

Post  mustardParty on Tue Apr 10, 2012 5:55 pm

I joined this site primarily because my girlfriend of 6 six years who I am engaged to has suffered from daily migraines for the last 4 or 5 years.

At one point we tried pot to see if that would help. While it DID help with the pain, it also defeated its own purpose. What I mean is, she basically had to get so high that she couldn't do anything else but sit around being high. She didn't have a job at the time as she has been in grad school in a program that has infrequent on-campus requirements. That helped, kind of.

In the end though it was not a real solution. The point of a migraine solution, as far as she's concerned, is that it should stop the pain, so that she could carry on with her life. While pot did satisfy one part of the requirement, it failed on the other part, since she was so high she couldn't do anything else. If she had had a a full time job that DEFINITELY wouldn't have worked - there's no way she could have driven, or worked at a desk or interacted with customers properly in that state, it's worse than being drunk!

You might argue that being incapacitated by weed is better than being incapacitated by a migraine. Your milage will vary I'm sure - for her it was not a compromise she was willing to make. Being that high prevented her from being able to carry on her studies, which are mentally demanding.

But it did numb the pain, and if you're desperate, well it worked for her.

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Re: Marijuana for migraines

Post  Migrainegirl on Tue Apr 10, 2012 6:55 pm

Thanks for the feedback. While my state does allow medical marijuana, I'm doubting I'll try it for the same reasons you mention. My goal is to be functional, which I doubt I would be on that.

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Re: Marijuana for migraines

Post  charmed quark on Fri Apr 13, 2012 7:31 pm

Well, one shouldn't use any medicinal drug to the point of stupification. If you have to use a drug in such large amounts that it causes severe cognitive side effects, one shouldn't use the drug . It's the dose that makes the poison.

I was unable top use drugs like topamax and Lyrica due to cognitive side effects at the large doses required, yet many people get very good results with these drugs with minimal side effects.

I would suggest usign SMALL quantities of prescription Marinol or cannabis, probably before bedtime, as a preventative. Not to use large amounts of the drugs to the point of intoxication.

Obviously, everyone's milage will vary.

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Re: Marijuana for migraines

Post  Benji1976 on Sat Apr 14, 2012 6:21 pm

Marijuana doesn't help my migraines. I haven't tried Marinol so can't comment- but for me I can't take a single drag (even of a low THC variety) and be functional enough to work. I know this isn't the case for everybody as I have friends in demanding professions (a lawyer and a CPA) that function fine.

If you try it, I think that the before bedtime suggestion is a good one!

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Re: Marijuana for migraines

Post  tdu on Sat Apr 14, 2012 6:52 pm

mustardParty wrote:I joined this site primarily because my girlfriend of 6 six years who I am engaged to has suffered from daily migraines for the last 4 or 5 years.

At one point we tried pot to see if that would help. While it DID help with the pain, it also defeated its own purpose. What I mean is, she basically had to get so high that she couldn't do anything else but sit around being high. She didn't have a job at the time as she has been in grad school in a program that has infrequent on-campus requirements. That helped, kind of.

In the end though it was not a real solution. The point of a migraine solution, as far as she's concerned, is that it should stop the pain, so that she could carry on with her life. While pot did satisfy one part of the requirement, it failed on the other part, since she was so high she couldn't do anything else. If she had had a a full time job that DEFINITELY wouldn't have worked - there's no way she could have driven, or worked at a desk or interacted with customers properly in that state, it's worse than being drunk!

You might argue that being incapacitated by weed is better than being incapacitated by a migraine. Your milage will vary I'm sure - for her it was not a compromise she was willing to make. Being that high prevented her from being able to carry on her studies, which are mentally demanding.

But it did numb the pain, and if you're desperate, well it worked for her.

The issue is more that migraine specific meds knock me (and a lot of other people) out worse than marijuana ever could. And I have side effects like muscle tightness and disorientation that last 2-3 days after those meds that I refer to as the 'medication hangover'. So the marijuana high is preferable. The other thing is if you use marijuana daily, it does not effect you the same way as if you smoke it occasionally. It sounds hard to believe, but you do get to a point where you are functional on it. In my case it's almost like the effect I got from anti-anxiety meds eventually.

It definitely will not work for everyone. If stress, lack of sleep, or muscle tension are triggers for you though, it can be beneficial. And another really important thing to remember is that there are different types and strains that have different effects. You want to be educated in what you are buying and buy from a source who knows what they are selling.

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Marinol works great for me

Post  vcuoco on Sat Apr 14, 2012 8:47 pm

Before I resort to the pain killers, i try to knock it out with THC. My doc prescribed Maranol for me, which is straight THC. It's VERY strong and VERY expensive. I don't use it that often, but the pain killers have horrible side effects for me.

Smoking it or vaporizing it greatly lessens migraine pain for an hour or two. the problem is it's short effect. Ingesting it in pill form or food is better, but be prepared to be high for a long time. That is not necessarily the best scenario for all of us. However, when it's a choice between unbearable pain, being wasted on pain killers, or being just "high" on THC, i'll take the THC.

Those of us who live in a state where medical marijuana is legal are very fortunate. Unfortunately, migraine is not on many state lists of "legitimate" reasons for prescriptions. Best wishes. Victoria

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Migraines, chocolate and THC

Post  charmed quark on Fri Apr 20, 2012 8:19 pm

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/your-brain-food/201109/migraines-marijuana-and-chocolate
The articlke talks about migraine and chocolate. I've never gotten any relief from chocolate (thought it was a trigger, anyway), but at least it sounds yummy. Article does describe how marijuana-related compounds can help reduce migraine.

I've had a horrible migraine all day. Nausous, dizzy and pain. Nothing I tried worked. Finally took some prescription THC an hour ago and the migraine went way down and I finally felt hungry for the first time today.

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Re: Marijuana for migraines

Post  Cathy on Sun Apr 22, 2012 5:40 pm

The last paragraph just blew me away. They spent the whole paragraph explaining exactly how and why marijuana helps a migraine. Then, instead of recommending a federal legalization of marijuana (at least medical), they suggest that we all go out and eat chocolate. Since I'm diabetic, that's not an option for me.

I agree exactly that most migraine medications that really get rid of the headache leave you unable to function or at least disrupt your life to a largedegree. Just look at the current thread on Topamax as an example.

Many of us, myself included have used magnesium and I still do. I have taken huge amounts of magnesium for years and even tried the magnesium oil that advertises how it works for migraines. No relief.

To say we should all go out and eat chocolate, a known headache trigger, is just another example of conflicting information we receive from the medical community. Thanks for the article though! Smile

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Re: Marijuana for migraines

Post  Cathy on Sun Apr 22, 2012 5:42 pm

Charmed Quark - You said, "I've had a horrible migraine all day. Nausous, dizzy and pain. Nothing I tried worked. Finally took some prescription THC an hour ago and the migraine went way down and I finally felt hungry for the first time today." (couldn't get that quote thing to work)

Wait, I just read your post again. So THC is what's in marijuana, right? And you took the prescription form and it worked, right? That's it, I'm moving to a state with legalized medical marijuana!

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Re: Marijuana for migraines

Post  charmed quark on Sun Apr 22, 2012 6:48 pm

You don't need to move to a medical marijuana state. Prescription THC, brand-name Marinol, generic name dronabinol, is available anywhere in the USA. It is a schedule 3 drug, but any doctor can prescribe it off-label. My insurance company just sent me a letter saying it is an appropriate drug for spasticity and neuropathic pain, both off-label uses. It probably does not work as well as whole cannabis, especially varieties high in CBD. It is difficult to dose - I have to use half an oil-filled capsule at a time as a full capsule is too much for me and gives me severe anxiety.

I live in a medical marijuana state but do not use herbal cannabis/marijuana as my employer considers it a firing offense.

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Re: Marijuana for migraines

Post  tdu on Tue Apr 24, 2012 4:25 am

charmed quark wrote:You don't need to move to a medical marijuana state. Prescription THC, brand-name Marinol, generic name dronabinol, is available anywhere in the USA. It is a schedule 3 drug, but any doctor can prescribe it off-label. My insurance company just sent me a letter saying it is an appropriate drug for spasticity and neuropathic pain, both off-label uses. It probably does not work as well as whole cannabis, especially varieties high in CBD. It is difficult to dose - I have to use half an oil-filled capsule at a time as a full capsule is too much for me and gives me severe anxiety.

I live in a medical marijuana state but do not use herbal cannabis/marijuana as my employer considers it a firing offense.

This is one of the most ridiculous thing about majiruana being illegal (outside of the medicinal reasons). When you are at home and not at work, it's ok to drink 3-4 beers every night. That is not any business of your employer. But you can't smoke a joint at home or they can test you and fire you. Just insane.

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Re: Marijuana for migraines

Post  FishMisicka on Fri Jul 13, 2012 5:01 pm

Hi guys, I'm new here. For me, cannabis has DEFINITELY helped with both prevention of migraines, and relieving the pain of migraines.
In here I saw someone say that the marijuana did help their girlfriend, but made it so all she could do was sit around and be high, yet not able to function. Cannabis can do this, but it usually depends on the type you are using. There are two main types of cannabis that are used, cannabis indica and cannabis sativa. Indica strains of marijuana give a person a body high, and make it so that you do not want to move, you get sleepy, etc. While sativa strains give a head high, and are actually energizing. Some people claim indicas help their migraines more and other claim sativas help more, but personally for myself sativas help my migraines a lot.

Cheers everyone Very Happy -
Fish.

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Re: Marijuana for migraines

Post  sherri b on Mon Jul 16, 2012 8:40 am

I tried it, someone gave me good stuff too. The first time I used it, it worked good. Took the mig away immediatly, (got muchies really bad though and was stoned!) So I tried it a second time and it did nothing for me... go figure, I didn't try it again.

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Re: Marijuana for migraines

Post  tortoisegirl on Mon Jul 16, 2012 5:48 pm

I wanted to comments I know quite a few folks with my condition who say they have been helped by medical marijuana. I'd love to try it, but as long as I am working I can't...although I'm not subject to drug tests currently, I could easily be moved to a position where they would require a test and wouldn't consider the doctor authorization.

Silly how I can attend work while taking prescribed narcotics and would be able to pass a drug test on them, but could not use medical marijuana in my off work time. Not sure if Marinol would be ok...as the laws say if you have a prescription you are good, but yet THC is a disqualification (and it takes a fancy test to distinguish between the two). I don't have the guts to look into it further. I do hope they provide employment protection (as well as federal protection) soon. It doesn't mean much to me that my state has legalized it. I've actually had a doctor and a therapist ask if I've tried it. Best wishes.

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re:marijuana for migraines

Post  dailyha-rose on Sat Jul 28, 2012 2:18 pm

as usual this forum has lots of great info. whether scientific or personal experience.

i wish it would work for me. i have tried so many meds. for 20 yrs. nothing has worked.

about 10 yrs ago i got sick of hearing from a friend that i should try it that it would work!!!

so began a descent into 55 minutes of paranoia hell! i never liked it as a kid. made me nervous. but i just wanted to see if it would actually help me. also stop my friend from riding me about it. funny how hard we try all the prescribed meds. and now i am trying something i never liked that is not even legal!

what a mistake. i had to go in for a 45 minute shower, sitting in the tub, imagining that the cops were coming, cars that don't exist can be heard in my driveway. totally paranoid thinking -- that was really scary. reminds me of why i never liked it 20+yrs ago.

then the munchies hit me! just as bad as years before. i can remember my husband's face when he saw the kitchen. "omg, what happened to the kitchen.... did you eat all this stuff.... are you feeling ok - are you nauseaus???????"

it's funny now, but that was another day i could not wait to end.

wish it worked! more power to anyone who gets relief from it .

don't understand why at least for med. reasons it cannot be legalized.

rose

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Re: Marijuana for migraines

Post  sherri b on Sat Jul 28, 2012 6:42 pm

Rose,

The same thing happened to me, but I did it at our camp in the woods, so I wasn't quite as paranoid as you described!

Then I thought geez, what if it does work? It's illeagal, and I can't afford it anyway!

Razz

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re:marijuana for migraines

Post  dailyha-rose on Sat Jul 28, 2012 11:09 pm

that is nice to hear. but i was at my own home and i thought i heard the world coming to visit. the one place you should feel safe. it was like i knew i was overwhelmed mentally and so i became super anxious. nothing new, i never enjoyed it in the 70's either.

i just thought i would not have the same reaction and when i did it was like deja vu!!!!! affraid

also, we don't live in the city. can hear cars coming a mile away and have a sensor that chimes when cars come! so my paranoia was just weird.

come to think of it, wasn't lsd created as a cure for migraines? wow, is that true or am i still under the influence of that pot??? drunken

fingers crossed for a treatment that does work for us.

rose

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Re: Marijuana for migraines

Post  Seaine on Sun Jul 29, 2012 7:47 am

When I was in college I had probably six people independently inform me that marijuana would help my migraines. Eventually I tried it a couple of times. I found that most of the time it would reduce the pain and I had very few side effects from it, the only thing is that jokes seemed really funny and music seemed way more interesting than usual. However, the next day the chances of me getting another migraine seemed a lot higher. It was like the marijuana helped but had a rebound/withdrawal effect. Disappointing, and I wasn't willing to acquire enough to use it everyday.

Besides, my current employer does random drug testing and fires for marijuana.

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Re: Marijuana for migraines

Post  tdu on Fri Aug 10, 2012 8:16 am

A few observations. Marijuana will have a mood enhancing effect. So if you are nervous about taking it, you could run into issues. It's tough to really do much about that, other than to get into the mindset that it's a medication that could potentially help you and try to overlook the 'illegal' aspect.

Also, ingesting it and smoking it produce 2 completely different reactions. For me personally, smoking it will not do much to help with migraines. But ingesting it is a completely different thing. Especially at night time.

Last but not least, what is 'helpful' for you 'dose' wise is going to widely vary from person to person. I have varying strengths of editable items (normally brownies). I prefer a pretty weak editable to take in the early stages of a headache. I find that is what is most effective for me. It relaxes me, helps with nausea, allows me to sleep, and helps with pain. Too strong of a dose, or taking it too late into a migraine can actually have the opposite effect. As can smoking it instead of ingesting it at times.

As for a more preventative measure, smoking a very small amount at night (literally a quarter of a bowl) seems to help me.

And to top it all off, there are different types of weed. In simple terms there are to main strains, indica and sativa that produce a totally different 'high'. Then there are different strains within those groups. So one strain or the other may work better for you.

It's just like any other medication we take. It's specific to the individual and you have to experiment to find out what works. If you really want to experiment with it as a treatment, you can't just smoke a random joint and decide 'well, that didn't work'. Of course, the issue with it being illegal in so many places is that this isn't general knowledge. If you can't walk into a dispensary and ask questions, you are on your own to look it up.

If you are choosing to use Marijuana medicinally, you gotta do the research and respect it as a medicine. Same if you are choosing to use it in spiritual pursuits. If people want to use it recreationally, and I personally believe that should be completely legal as well, that is another matter. But if you are looking to get something more out of it, then you have to put something into it.

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Re: Marijuana for migraines

Post  fullon on Fri Aug 10, 2012 1:28 pm

It only worked just a little for me.
And yes how weird to have vomiting suppressed or to actually have the munchies while in the middle of a migraine.
It wasn't enough to completely stiffle the pain but it should be available to those who are not helped by the available medications.

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Re: Marijuana for migraines

Post  Strange Botwin on Sat Sep 08, 2012 10:31 am

Hello. I hope I can add some information here that will be of use. First of all, Marinol is synthetic THC. While THC is the main active cannabinoid in marijuana, it is not the only one with medical benefits. Especially when it comes to pain. Marijuana with high levels of CBD should be strongly considered. If you are lucky enough to live in a medical state I would suggest you ask your local dispensary or collective about high CBD strains. Here's the best news for you folks who do not like the effects of marijuana: CBD does not get you high. People are breeding specifically for CBD rich plants with low THC content specifically for this purpose. It's still in it's infancy, but the progress has been fairly astounding with the legalization in medical states.

Next, please remember that this medicine will effect everyone differently. Just like OTC and prescription drugs do. I have been a marijuana user since I was a teenager and it does not necessarily prevent migraines for me. I have found it to be quite helpful though if taken early enough. For example, there have been times that I have smoked directly after the aural precursors begin and the headache has never come on. I have also had it completely knock the headache out mid-migraine, but this has been rare. Instead, it usually has helped make the pain manageable.

Lastly, please understand that marijuana is not a singular entity. There are thousands of different strains out there and all may have different effects for you. When I have had marijuana that knocked a headache completely out my best guess is I had a high CBD strain, but didn't know it because the government has prohibited any real research for so long. If it were legalized and regulated we might make significant headway in "dialing it in." Please use caution if you attempt to try marijuana to treat your migraines. It can be extremely potent and unpleasant for some people. Especially if you are not a regular user. Start with baby steps and see how it works for you. After having used it thousands upon thousands of times I can usually function at a normal level, but there are times when it still takes me by surprise and I am overwhelmed. Be careful, be smart and be safe. Attain as much knowledge about your medicine before usage. In the end, only YOU will know what works and what doesn't. Good luck.

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Re: Marijuana for migraines

Post  marco1968 on Sun Sep 09, 2012 7:44 pm

My only experience was very negative. Very strong stuff. Plus I was having major disorientation beforehand. Felt utterly horrible for a few hours. Just lay in bed and waited for the world to stop spinning.

- Mark (aka Captain Bringdown)

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Re: Marijuana for migraines

Post  sherri b on Thu Sep 13, 2012 8:56 am

I tried it twice, someone gave me a really good bud, (the best part of the plant) I tried it once, it worked, (but I got the muchies so bad, wanted to stuff my face) then the next day tried it again, did nothing but make me choke, cuz I'm not used to smoking. Didn't touch the migraine.

I thought, gee, if it did work, how could I afford it, and where would I smoke it? Since it's illegal, I think it would have made me a nervous wreck!

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Re: Marijuana for migraines

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