Atenolol for Migraines anyone else experience this?

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by UPK5, Mar 16, 2006.

  1. UPK5

    UPK5 New Member

    Hi Fibro Friends,

    I went to a new recommended neurologist today and he suggested I try Atenolol for my migraines. I am curious if anyone else has had any experience with this drug for migraines?

    I did a search on old posts, but it has been a long time since anyone has written anything up about this drug.

    I would love to get some feedback.

    Thanks.

    Cindy
  2. fivesue

    fivesue New Member

    I have high blood pressure, so I was taking a blood pressure med...I had lots of migraines, and one thing the doctor did was switch me to a beta blocker, Atenolol. It does help.

    Another doctor decided to change my medication for BP, and when I was weaning off it, I started to get migraines. That was that. I went right back on it, and it is part of the treatment that has helped me keep these things at bay.

    So, it is part. Antidepressants and then a pill for when they break through also help, but I really have been helped by this beta blocker. It is an old, tried and true med.

    Hope this helps you.

    Sue
  3. Pianowoman

    Pianowoman New Member

    I am on a different beta blocker for migraines and it does help. I couldn't tolerate the full dose though so I am on a smaller dose. I think it's worth a try.

    Kathy.
  4. BabiCati

    BabiCati New Member

    my mom takes it for a heart condition and since she started many years ago she has never had a headache or migraine again!
  5. UPK5

    UPK5 New Member

    Hi y'all.

    Thanks for your input.

    The doctor has prescribed 50 mg. (one pill) once a day. He didn't say if I shd. take it in the morning or night. I asked the pharmacist and he was surprised I wasn't taking it for a heart condition or high blood pressure. He recommended I take it in the morning. I called the office today, (the doctor wasn't in) but the woman I spoke to said, it doesn't really matter. Does anyone know if time a day makes a difference for migraines with FMS?

    I can remember the name of the drug by thinking of atenolol
    a-ten(10)-oh-laugh-out-loud, otherwise I was having a hard time remembering it's name.

    So far it is only my first day, and it is hard to say if it has helped. I forgot to ask how long it is supposed to take for it to start working? Anyone know?

    Thanks again for your replies.

    Cindy
  6. UPK5

    UPK5 New Member

    I am not sure if it is better to take it in the morning or the evening. The doctor just wrote, take once a day. Any opinions?

    I took it only ONCE so far this morning. Right now, I have a headache. I wonder HOW long it takes for this medicine to KICK in. Anyone else know? I forgot to ask the doctor.

    I have a HEADACHE now. But maybe after ONE dosage, this is normal. I am so TIRED of HURTING.

    I woke up from shooting pain last night, in my shoulder, boom, bing, bang... at least my head was OK. I guess it is impt. to be thankful for the pain that goes away for awhile. Cause when the whole symphony of pain plays, the volume of this orchestra definitely gives me a MIGRAINE!
  7. lenasvn

    lenasvn New Member

    and can help with migraines. It is a blood pressure medication mainly, do you have hypertension? That can often increase the amount of migraines. If this doesn't work, your doc. might add a MILD diuredic, it is very helpful. It should either way limit the amount of migraines you have, but not take them away totally. You need something for the migraine attacks themselves. It should start affecting you almost right away (Atenolol). Try it for a month and see if it works. If it doesn't, talk to your doc.

    [This Message was Edited on 03/17/2006]
  8. proteinlady

    proteinlady New Member

    I don't take atenol but take a different beta blocker for migraine prevention. I went from having 8 migraines a month to 1 or none per month. I get incredibly drowsy about 35 min. after I take mine, so I take it just before bed.

    When I do get a migraine, I take fioricet (I can't take the triptans). The fioricet either kills the migraine or reduces the pain significantly so I can function. Beta blockers and other types of prophylactic drugs usually decrease the frequency of migraines and decrease the intensity of the pain.

    Paula
  9. UPK5

    UPK5 New Member

    Thanks Paula for the information about atenolol and fioricet. The first neurologist I saw, would not give me anything to relieve the horrific pain that I could not escape from. My girlfriend said her doctor gave her fiorinal, and he said, "That's a NARCOTIC!" He seemed very paranoid about any narcotic drugs.

    What is the difference between fioricet and fiorinal? Have you tried both?

    I do have typical fibro sleeping problems, so maybe taking the atenolol at night would be better. That is why I kept trying to get an answer about time from someone.

  10. UPK5

    UPK5 New Member

    Hello Lenasvn,

    I have a lot of aches and pains, but I do not have hypertension.

    Cindy
  11. UPK5

    UPK5 New Member

    Thanks ME (Fibrotart)

    Are your initials ME, or does me, just mean me (first syllable in meow)? Just curious. Even if my head hurts, I still have questions.

    This 2nd doctor have me 2 samples of Imitrex but said ONLY to take it if I was in excruciating PAIN. He wrote a prescription for only 9 pills. I pay the same $$$ price (mail away) for a 2 months supply. The receptionist said, many plans will not let you get more than 9 imitrex tabs at a time. Have you heard of this? The other doctor said OH NO, he would not let me have that either. I think he wanted me to SUFFER! Grin and bear it, although I could not grin with the pain I was in.

    Is Maxalt, a "narcotic"? That is great that your doctor have you samples.

    How long have you been taking atenolol? Did you try a lot of other medicines before you discovered this one worked for you?

    Thanks for your responses!

    Me, oops, I mean, Cindy.
  12. proteinlady

    proteinlady New Member

    I've taken both and they work equally well. They both have a small amount of caffeine and barbituate in them. Fioricet has 325 mg tylenol in and fiorin0l has 325 mg asprin in it. I never have taken more than 3 a day. My migraines usually last from 3-5 days. Ususally the worst day I may need 3 but the other days I only need i 0r 2. Before I started a beta blocker I was taking 30-40 fioricet a month. Now 50 fioricet lasts 6-7 mo. I've been taking fioicet since 1984 for migraines and I am not addicted to them, I have not rebounded from them and I have not need to increase the dosage.

    In all of the years I've been taking them I've only had one doc not want to give them to me and that was when I lived in boulder, co. I just found another doc. Hope this helps.

    Paula
    [This Message was Edited on 03/18/2006]
  13. TXFMmom

    TXFMmom New Member

    Beta blockers are often given for migraines, and many do get great benefits from them.

    Atenolol is one of the ORIGINAL BETA BLOCKERS, AND HAS SO MUCH HISTORY THAT THEY KNOW WHAT TO EXPECT FROM IT AND IT IS DIRT CHEAP.

    Try it, and see if it helps. At one time, they were giving calcium channel blockers for migraines, but I do not know if this has fallen out of favor, as calcium channel blockers have developed some problems in terms of PR for heart problems.
  14. CountryRocker

    CountryRocker New Member

    There is an old medication for migraines that I swear by and every person I've told about it has thanked me. It's caffergot. Not sure if I spelled that right. You get 5 pills and take one each half hour until the pain is gone. It's usually gone before the 3rd pill, but I'd take the 3rd just to make sure it stays gone.
    I haven't taken it in so long and just called the pharmacist to see if it had anything in it that I'm allergic to (like aspirin) and it doesn't have it. Wow, there's something I can still take! Life is good.
  15. lauralea443

    lauralea443 New Member

    it made me so weak i stoped taking it
  16. UPK5

    UPK5 New Member

    Hi. How are you feeling?

    Is Caffergot available over the counter, or do you need a prescription for that?

    Lauralea443, if you became too weak taking the beta blocker, did you take something else to help you instead? How long had you tried the medication before you stopped it? Did you try a variety of beta blockers? Just curious.

    My headaches seem to get a little better than hurt again. Now that I am almost OFF the Topamax medicine (thank goodness) I am MUCH better. That medicine at 6 pills a day really messed with my head and my migraine pain doubled or quadrupled.

    I am still dealing with the other fibro pain in my body. My shoulder pain has been waking me up at night because it is shooting down my arm. It is not FUN.

    I am looking forward to feeling YOUNG or something close to it again.

    I hope my fibro friends are feeling all right tonight.

    Best wishes,
    Cindy

  17. CountryRocker

    CountryRocker New Member

    Caffergot and ergot (not sure if those are spelled right) are both by rx only. Caffergot has caffeine in it, ergot doesn't. I haven't tried the ergot, just the other, but I swear by them. They are very old drugs and doctors forget about them and go with the new ones. I've had friends that would get only a little relief with the newer pills for migraine that are on the market and I'd tell them about caffergot and would keep at them until they got sick of me and asked their doctor for it just to get me off of their backs. Every one of them thanked me for bugging them to try this. They must be pretty strong because they only give you 5 pills at a time. I'm not sure why that is.
  18. UPK5

    UPK5 New Member

    Hi Country Rocker,

    Let's make sure, I haven't forgot...

    I could get caffergot or ergot, but not a lot in one spot!

    They only allow you fill a prescription of 5 pills at a time? My mail away pharmacy plan, allows us to get a 2 month supply of a medicine.

    Except, this last doctor, wrote a script for Imitrex and only wrote it for 9 pills. I will have to pay $40 or $60 depending on how they classify the medicine regardless of the quantity given. If we don't MAIL AWAY, the insurance company charges us the maximum price allowed, and sent me a letter, for certain items, they actually have the right to refuse filling it.

    I thank you for your suggestions.

    Cindy
  19. UPK5

    UPK5 New Member

    Dear Melissa,

    I think Melissa sounds so much nicer than Fibrotart, and much more personal than "ME". My sister in law, told me when she was a newlywed, her husband's old "female" friend used to call and leave messages, saying HI, It's ME! It drove my sil crazy! When I read your ME signature, I wondered if you were, HER! LOL! Thanks for clearing that up.

    When I first started posting here, I was a little apprehensive about telling anyone my name. I didn't know who anyone was and if that was an OK thing to do. So I played it by ear. Of course, I still don't really "know anybody", but I am familiar with some of the names and symptoms people have on this site. I find peace here.

    Anyway, I am STILL hurting! :( I have been taking the Atenolol for 4 days now. I am also taking what the first neuro. put me on, except only 2 pills (instead of 6/day) of Topamax. My head hurts. It is NOT in constant pain. But it is hurting NOW. It started throbbing last night. The newer neurologist said to continue the low dose of the topamax until my body gets used to taking the atenolol.

    In the interim, I go to a yoga class, to help stretch my other aching muscles once a week. One of the guys in my class, is a Reiki Master and practices Accupressure. I had never done anything like this before, but my yoga teacher thought this might really help me. So, I went 2 times. It is a DRUG free method of healing through the person's own energy. Well, I trust Peter (the Reiki master) however, NOW I am in MORE pain than I was before. It seems like this therapeutic treatment brought back some OLD wounds to heal. Melissa, sometimes, (actually almost all the time) I just don't know who to turn to for help anymore. That is why I come to this board.

    My knee is throbbing in pain, my shoulder, my left wrist and of course my HEAD, thump, thump thump.

    I did NOT like the doctor neurologist behind door number one at all. He was so weird. I do NOT think he listened to me or understood anything about having fibro. This second doctor, didn't want to help me with the throbbing pain in my shoulder, he said I need to see an orthopedist. In the past, everytime I have gone to an orthopedist, they say my bones are fine, it must be in my muscles, blah blah blah. Then they send me on my NOT so MERRY way, cause they can't help me, but they just BILL me for the visit.

    You are SOOOOO lucky you found a NICE doctor who was able to help you with your headaches, give you FREE samples, and medicine that does the trick. What a relief.

    Thanks for sharing and caring. It is appreciated.

    Your fed-up and frustrated fibro friend,
    Cindy
  20. UPK5

    UPK5 New Member

    I love the song, "Sweet Melissa", by the Allman Bros. I am so glad you finally came out of that silly NAME closet!

    Melissa, I have been to quite a few chiropractors, who were NOT helpful at ALL! NO GOOD. ONE chiropractor made me give up dairy. That is when I stopped breathing, my nostrils collapsed. I kept asking him, to PLEASE look in my NOSE, he said eeeww, NO, I do backs, not noses! I said, so why did you mess with my sinuses? It turned out I could NOT breathe (only through my mouth)and finally found out what an ENT was and that I needed an operation. I cried when the doctor told me I needed surgery. OUCH! That was my first of many sinus polypectomy surgeries.

    The guy from my yoga class is NOT a massage therapist, although he does have people who work in his office who do massages. He happens to be a pharmacist by day, and was trained in the Eastern philosophy of medicine to help cancer patients have a better quality of life on a ward in a hospital he had been working on at the time. He was skeptical at first, but when he saw what a difference it made for these people he really was quite amazed. He practices Reiki at night and on the weekends.

    So, I am trying IT. I had STOPPED going to doctors for about a year, cause I was so fed up with their b.s. But, when I started getting these massive headaches (never had them before) I got scared and thought I would give the medical community another crack at helping me.

    I bet there are some really good doctors out there. It is just knowing HOW and where to find them. And of course, if they take my insurance.

    So, Melissa, I see you live in the Southeast part of the U.S., I am a Northeast girl. Do you like it where you live? Do you think the weather makes a difference in your symptoms? BTW, Happy Spring. It is now official!

    I am in the New York City area, and it was cold today but the birds are out there chirping away. Did you send all the birds back North, already? They are very NOISY. I guess they have a lot to catch up on. LOL.

    Your cute and timely response, did bring a smile to my face, even though my body is aching.

    Thanks.

    Cindy