Posted by Matt (184.108.40.206) on September 26, 2000 at 10:52:35:
In Reply to: side effects posted by Chris on September 25, 2000 at 12:25:37:
I have in my bad days up to 8 attacks one day.
I use 1/2 injections so with 4 injections I can do one day. I have used the last 4 weeks in total
around 80 injections. I have used 4 injections a day for 15 days in a row. The only doctor making problems is my familydoctor (GP). He says it is my own responsibility. My neurologist however (he is in holland one of the few Clusterheadaches and Migraine experts) says it is no problem since I am episodic so the "abuse" doesnt go on for very long time (3 to 4 weeks when peaking with CH) and he says I can take safely up to 8 injections a day because he doesnt think it is a good idea to take half injections because the time they start working takes longer then. When I take full injection the pain is gone in 10-15 minutes,when taking half injections pain is gone in 20-30 minutes. But please dont worry, I keep taking half injections because the idea of taking 8 injections a day makes me afraid.
AS a preventative I take 360 MG Verapamil a day. Dont know if it works but fact is that I started my period with very severe HA's 8 times a day and now 3 weeks further I only have 3 attacks a day not so severe anymore so I can just sit or lie down to wait for pain to end instead of walking around my house like a total maniac in pain.
I am very happy that I can consult this particular Neurologist. He knows about the severe pain instead of other doctors whose first thoughts when you see them are that you are having strange mental problems which causes pain when you describe your pain to them. This neurologist had my heart condition checked by a cardiologist so I think that I am safe with my Imitrex use. I use imitrex since 1994. The only time I experienced side effects with Imitrex was when I was having acute vascular constrictions (very painful and a lot of fear of dying) immediately after I took an injection. The problem then was that the doctor i was seeing at that time subscribed me besides imitrex for acute treatment also methysergide as preventative medication which is (i found out the hard way) not allowed to use it the same time with imitrex because it also causes vascular constrictions. I never saw that neurologist again. I was admitted in hospital after that medication accident and I saw a neurologist in ER and he was very angry (not at me) and cursing like "what idiot subscribed you this combination"
In Holland GlaxoWellcome and especially Imitrex (here it is called Imigran) have a bad reputation because of the marketing techniques Glaxo uses.
The imitrex is fully paid by mandatory state insurance (just like NHS in England) and when they introduced Imitrex they knew the dutch NHS wouldnt compensate patients for the costs since there already was another injection against migraine available(ergotamine injections)The principle is when there is an alternative for medication the cheapest one is fully paid for. What Glaxo did was, they bought the company who made the ergotamine injections which costed only 1 dollar for the NHS and then they took the ergotamine injections of the market and replaced them with Imitrex injections which are very more expensive 40 dollar a piece and thus forcing the NHS to fully pay for them. At that time Doctors didnt see the difference between sumatriptan (imitrex) and ergotamine or the benefits of sumatriptan so a lot of people here were very pissed at Glaxo Wellcome accusing them of destroying the national healthcare system by putting drugs on the market for very high prices and they started a campaign against Glaxo. That was the time that Imitrex got a bad name because all the sideeffects of Imitrex and accidents with it were highlighted in the news and that is why today there are still people believing that you immediately get a heartattack after use of imitrex. I say this because I know there is a risk in using Imitrex but Imitrex has a controversial history and introduction on the market so that is politics. I believe that there are still a lot of Doctors who know only the bad stories about Imitrex when it was introduced on the market and that there are still a lot of doctors refusing to subscribe Imitrex and who are unaware of the benefits this drug offers and rather subscribe ergotamine instead which is scientifically proven to be much more dangerous to use than Sumatriptan.(imitrex)
I am aware that Imitrex can be dangerous but not every doctor knows about the true risks.I think that is still because of the early disputes around imitrex and the costs of this drugs.(And probably that a lot of doctors have no interest in headaches because they see it as minor nuisance (be a man dont complain about pain!))
I also believe that Glaxo only cares about money. They also developed drugs against AIDS/HIV and they also cost fortunes. I read somewhere that every HIV/AIDS patient here in Holland costs the state 3000 dollars a month because there is no alternative in medication and they can only use these very expensive patented drugs. I believe that a lot of difficulties we undergo (at least in most countries in western europe with good healthcare and mandatory insurance) with clusterheadaches has a financial source. Doctors always give you the cheapest drugs first to try before they subscribe other more expensive drugs.I hope in the future more doctors will judge Imitrex in the same way as they do with other drugs and accepting it as a very good working and safe drugs and that they can have an opinion on imitrex based on scientifical facts and not on politics. ($$$$$$$$$$!!!) (why dont we all start writing to Glaxo and asking them to make the Imitrex cheaper and thus our lives less complex?)
So this was my little story
Wishing you all pain free days
Post a Followup