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Propranolol for migraine in a teen, any experience, worrying side effects. Also any advice on things that help migraines I'd love to hear them!

(25 Posts)
YoScience Wed 20-Jan-16 18:40:49

My DD (15 yrs) has been suffering from migraines for a while, but they are becoming worse and more frequent and resulted with her in hospital the other night with loss of vision and unable to stop vomiting.

Her previous treatment was sumatriptan, paracetamol and an anti sickness tablet but today she has been given propranolol to take while waiting for a neurologist appointment. While I don't want her to keep suffering the way she is, I'm quite concerned about the list of side effect of these tablets and how an uncontrolled withdrawal can result in death (I appreciate this is an extreme one and probably for people who are using them for other conditions rather than migraine)

I'm just generally really worried about DD just now. I'm willing to give anything a try to help but the side effects were a bit concerning for these.

On reading the migraine trust site I'm also trying magnesium and a vitamin b complex too!
I just

YoScience Wed 20-Jan-16 18:41:47

Sorry, so anything else anyone has found that has helped I'd love to hear about it. smile

MinesaBottle Wed 20-Jan-16 19:12:44

Coffee (black, strong) seems to help when I feel one coming on. I'm on medication (not for migraine) so don't like to take anything else. Usually I try and have a coffee when I get the aura or at the start of the headache.

Your poor DD, I hope you manage to get good advice and help for her - I'm pretty sure propranolol withdrawal is only dangerous if you've ben taking it for a long time but I'm sure someone with more expertise than me can reassure you!

Kosakova Wed 20-Jan-16 20:17:58

I'm 52 and take propranalol (2 per day). I haven't suffered any side effects now or when I took it when I was in my 20's. Hopefully it won't be too long before the neurologists appointment comes through and you can ask their advice.

itsbetterthanabox Wed 20-Jan-16 20:34:30

Propranolol is a preventative. There are others. Personally it's the only one that helped me. The only side effect I've had is feeling colder.
The other preventatives include anti depressants and pizotifen. Each drug works for some people not everyone. If she's having frequent migraines then preventatives can be very helpful.
Abortive drugs when you actually have the migraine are important too. They don't all work for everyone again and some stop working for a while. I've taken all the triptan drugs currently naratriptan is working for me and has been for a while.
Migraines are horrible. I hope she finds something that helps her.

squirrel76 Wed 20-Jan-16 20:46:12

My DD 13 has been taking propranolol for migraines for about 2 and a half years now with no issues at all, it's been really effective and she's only had 2 mild migraines since starting the medication, compared to monthly migraines with vomiting lasting a few days prior to this!

Carbsnomore Wed 20-Jan-16 20:58:01

Has she been tested for coeliac disease? 4% of sufferers have serious migraine as a primary symptom and it is frequently overlooked by doctors who are not so familiar with the disease and are completely unaware of this. If you're concerned about medication then this is really worth checking out.

I am an occassional migraine sufferer myself....2 or 3 a year but they last for several days and wipe me out for a week. My sympathies are with you and your poor daughter.

Skullyton Wed 20-Jan-16 21:02:56

i don't take it for migraines, but i've been taking propanalol for a few years for my anxiety.

i have never suffered any side effects from it!

cestlavielife Wed 20-Jan-16 21:07:08

My dd 15 has been on propanolol for two years. Went from being disabled by nausea dizziness headaches missed one years school to just under 90 % attendance. Still gets done bad days.

No significant side effects started on 10 mg morning and night and built up... was on 40 mg am and 80 night now 80 mg morning and night.

Give it a go...

cestlavielife Wed 20-Jan-16 21:07:53

My dd has coeliac was diagnosed age four

Bubblebanana76 Wed 20-Jan-16 21:15:52

I am planning on getting this piercing in the hope that it helps with my migraines! If it works great, it will be worth it! If it doesn't work no harm done!

YoScience Wed 20-Jan-16 21:24:10

Thank you so much everyone, that's really reassuring to read. She will start them tomorrow and hopefully they will give her some relief.

She's to take 20mg in the morning and the same at night. The doc mentioned that it can lower bp and it seems that her bp seems to be naturally quite low so I'll try to keep an eye on that.

I've googled the symptoms of coeliac disease but I don't really think DD has any of the symptoms but I'll keep it in mind.

Thanks again everyone, this has really reassured me smile

gingerboy1912 Wed 20-Jan-16 21:25:25

I take propranolol have done for five years now after having almost constant migraines. They worked within days and have kept working I still get headaches but no where near as bad I have my life back and can even make plans to do things in advance now. There will be side effects to begin with but they should pass in time. Although weight gain has been a factor for me as they make you hungry. I would say let your daughter try them. Hth

gingerboy1912 Wed 20-Jan-16 21:25:31

I take propranolol have done for five years now after having almost constant migraines. They worked within days and have kept working I still get headaches but no where near as bad I have my life back and can even make plans to do things in advance now. There will be side effects to begin with but they should pass in time. Although weight gain has been a factor for me as they make you hungry. I would say let your daughter try them. Hth

YoScience Wed 20-Jan-16 21:30:48

DD has also mentioned that piercing as she is quite keen on piercings anyway, if you do get it done report back please!

ThisHorseCalledDonny Wed 20-Jan-16 21:39:14

I took it in my late teens, but I didn't get on with it ( was doing a lot of sport at the time and I found I ended up with no 'top gear' when I needed to push hard)

I too queried the horrible side effects that were listed, and was told they only apply to a sudden stop ( I.e don't just stop taking them, wean down off them) and most importantly, those side effects only apply to people taking them for cardiac related things ( like high heart rate, racing heart during panic attacks etc) and don't apply to a young person with a normal heart rhythm ask if she has been prescribed them for migraines then there's no real worries with withdrawal anyway.

YoScience Thu 21-Jan-16 12:05:32

That's good to hear, thank you for that. I did hope that would be the case, but good to hear you had it clarified.

Luckily DD isn't sporty at all, so hopefully she won't suffer too much from any side effects.

MeadowHay Fri 22-Jan-16 21:24:58

I took it for awhile for anxiety, but found I couldn't take more than 30mg at a time without my BP dropping too low, as my BP is naturally ok but on the low side of it, so I would keep a very strong eye on her if that is the case for your daughter, especially due to her age, as I was 19 when I was on it. I didn't have any side effects from the drug though. DH has taken it short-term for two periods of time for anxiety too and we noticed some mild problems with breathing both times which we are not sure if it was coincidence or not, but DH's family has a history of asthma and there have been some concerns about propranolol exacerbating asthma. Other than that he found no other side-effects and as I say we are not even sure if it was caused by that or not.

I hope it really helps your daughter, I get migraines about once a month or so and they sound milder than hers too, poor thing. flowers

YoScience Sat 23-Jan-16 13:24:02

Thank you. She started the tablets yesterday but I'll definitely keep a check on her BP. We are visiting my mum today who has a bp monitor so I might take a reading today and then again in a few weeks when we are back to check if there is any difference. Hopefully the tablets will help and she'll see an improvement. smile

alibubbles Sat 23-Jan-16 15:32:32

Having had migraine for about 20 years and tried everything from sumatripan, immigran, nasal sprays, dixarit, etc etc. The best remedy - soluble aspirin, it really works!

molacio Sat 23-Jan-16 19:30:39

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

amarmai Sat 23-Jan-16 20:47:38

Dr prescribed magnesium citrate + vit D + vit B2 , which i take everyday and it works . I used to eat feverfew leaves hwich also work and sometimes still do.

KenDoddsDadsDog Sat 23-Jan-16 20:56:35

I took it daily from being pretty young and it did help. Would second the soluble aspirin. I also have a hot wheat bag that I put on my forehead in bed.

nooka Sat 23-Jan-16 21:10:33

My dd has been taking magnesium for three or four years now and it does seem to have made some difference to the frequency of her migraines. She was relatively young when first diagnosed (nine or ten) and so they weren't keen on giving her anything too strong. She has a painkiller (ketorolac plus paracetemol) and anti-emetic which make some difference, but we need to get something stronger for the pain now as it doesn't seem to take the edge off the really bad headaches.

I've only once thought about taking her to A&E when she looked like she had had a stroke (one side of her face went all droopy, it was really scary but apparently not that unusual).

Grapejuicerocks Mon 25-Jan-16 08:34:41

Dd took it for several years due to her silent migraines. No problems.
She's grown out of them now fortunately as they were hormonally related. Is there a chance your dd will grow out of them?

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