Migraineurs Support User Group
Are there any fellow abdominal migraine sufferers here?
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A place for migraineurs to discuss anything and everything related to migraines. Topic suggestions: Think of this as a support group for migraineurs. Reach out to group members when ever you need support. Give your support to fellow migraineurs. You, as a migraineur yourself, probably have a wealth of knowledge to share with others. The knowledge that you have could vastly improve the quality of life for another group member. Share share share! Discuss your current acute and preventative treatment plans. Ask others about their current acute and preventative treatment plans. Discuss past acute and preventative treatment plans as well... we can always learn something from what didn't work! Discuss your own personal tips and tricks for lessening the severity of acute migraine attacks. Post about your upcoming GP or Neurologist appointments. Ask other group members questions about what to expect and suggestions on how to prepare. Update fellow group members on your progress... both on set backs (so that we can provide support, suggestions and hope!) and on successes (so that we can congratulate you and so that you can provide other group members with hope!).

Founded by marileew on September 27, 2009
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Are there any fellow abdominal migraine sufferers here?

I have some headache migraines but my main problem with migraines are abdominal migraines.  It took me a long time to get a diagnosis.  I first had three episodes a year of abdominal spasms followed by protracted vomiting.
Then, I started developing auras such as sensitivy to light, seeing shapes, stars, tickling on back of neck followed usually by a severe abdominal spasm on the lower right side, then I would become nauseated and start vomiting.  Sometimes I would have chills and sweats.  Eventually the spasm would move from my lower abdomen to a really painful spasm in the center of my chest, it felt like it was probably esophageal.  Also, at first I would have mutliple bowel movements.  I would go on for hours with the severe sharp pain in the center of my chest becoming progressively worse until I vomited.  Vomiting would bring only temporary relief then everything would start all over again.  At first, anti-diarrheal medication would help and if I could take a Valium before I started vomiting then it would make it better.  A doctor suggested I insert Valium vaginally because I was throwing up.  So, I would take two Valium every 6 hours per vagina according to my doctor's instruction.

These spells became worse and more frequent.  They would usually happen right before my period started and any stress like having a tooth filled would bring them on.  I went to the ER several times.  At first, they could control these spasms by a few pain shots, a GI cocktail which is lidocaine and Maalox I think and IV Tagamet.  The spasms and vomiting would stop after 30 minutes.

But, I had to start taking increasing amounts of opioids for my complex regional pain syndrome.  So pain shots didn't work anymore, GI cocktail stopped working as well as IV Tagamet.  They would load me up with anti-emetics such as Reglan.  They gave me so much anti-emetics that I overdosed and developed a permanent tremor.

So when I went to the ER, they would give me a few pain shots, anti-emetics, IV Tagamet.  None of this work, I would continue to vomit for several hours.  They put in an IV for hydration.  Then they would stick in a NG tube which stopped the vomiting and give me something like ativan to relax me and reduce anxiety.  They would admit me where the pain would continue for a few days and they would give me a low dose of IV pain meds.  They would do CT Scans, x-rays, occasional endoscopies but they could never figure out what was wrong.

I stopped going to the ER and decided to tough it out at home because the ER was so stressful.  Finally, I happened to go to a neuroendocrinologist.  Just by my history, he told me I had abdominal migraines and he put me on injectable Imitrex 5 mg. subcutaneous.  It comes with its own injector and it is not painful.  From then on, if I gave myself the migraine shot early enough then I wouldn't go into the prolonged vomiting.  If I tried to give myself the migraine medicine during the aura it didn't help.  I had to wait until abdominal spasm first started.  Sometimes it would require two injections.

If I did not catch it early I would start with the vomiting.  But, I did insert the vailum vaginally per Dr's instruction and my husband would make me a GI cocktail using Lidocaine prescribed by my doctor and Maalox mixed together periodically.  If I could lay flat against the bed then I wouldn't throw up so often so it would give the cocktail a little time to work.  I would throw up but it wouldl be easier and I didn't have as much pain.  If I took Valium vaginally per doctor's instruction I did seem to have an easier time of things and the vomiting would last as long.

Now, I am going through menopuse so I don't have hormonal fluctuations that I did.  I think it has something to do with change in estrogen levels.  My abdominal migraines are less frequent and I am almost always able to control them with injectable Imitrex.

I hope my story might help someone and I would like to chat with anyone who also has abodminal migraines.  The key to getting diagnosed is to going to a gastoenterolgist that might have a neurology background or perhaps a neuroendrocrinologist.  I never found a regular GI doctor that even knew about abdominal migraines.  I didn't know they existed until the doctor told me so.  He had been a student of a GI doctor who had done research with a neurologist regarding abdominal migraines.  I saw a gi doc on television who said that the gut like the brain has its own neurological system.  My gut is very sensitive and I have a few other GI conditions.  If you can find a GI doctor that understands something about the neurology of the GI tract then you might be able to get a diagnosis.
9 Comments
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875426_tn?1325532016
I had a doc at an ER recently wonder if I was having an abdominal migraine.  I was having persistant upper right abdominal pain (I am having it occasionally at the moment).  I have two hemangiomas on my liver, but the largest is only up to 2.5 cm.  I've been wondering if that was irritated somehow by my ribcage or something as certain positions seem to set the pain off.  I also had a doctor theorize another time that I was having esophageal spasms (I thought maybe it was my heart).  I don't know if I have abdominal migraines or not.  But it does sound like you went through a real nightmare and I'm glad they are not as bad as they used to be for you.
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875426_tn?1325532016
I should add that an endoscopy done fairly recently showed mild gastritis and esophagitis.
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764912_tn?1322715443
I do not have that type of migraine...but I found this article...http://psy.psychiatryonline.org/cgi/content/full/47/4/353

Hope this helps, wish I knew more..
Tracy
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875426_tn?1325532016
Correction: Recent discovery-MRI proved not hemiangiomas (thought to be (at least probable) with ultrasounds previously.
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875426_tn?1325532016
Well, MRI w/different dye prove hemangiomas after all!  I had been getting nauseated at times with the abdominal pain.  The doc today felt I had costochondritis, etc..
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681148_tn?1285160820
I do have a lot of gastro symptoms, but I don't get such terrible extremes that you described.  I will definitely feel unwell and I do get plenty of nausea, but I don't usually throw up.  Lately I've been having new symptoms--for me.  They did do a CAT scan, but they didn't find anything unusual.  There is no doubting that I have daily migraines and that most of them are silent migraines.  I don't know what the other kind of migraine is.  I also get other headaches, because I definitely get migraines combined with tension headaches.
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Avatar_f_tn
I am doctor and my wife was a medical mystery to me and all her doctors. Finally, started treating these 6-8 hour episodes as abdominal migraines... Her symptoms abdominal pain (global), nausea (occasional vomiting), nocturnal (not exclusively), with associated symptoms of hyperesthesia, pain that also seemed to occur in chest, back of neck/shoulders, occasional midline over spine.  After several years she ended up on tons of morphine and it didn't give her any quality to life. When her docs started treating as abdominal migraine first tried topamax (helped but side effects) then keppra (modest help) FINALLY LYRICA. It was like a light switch! Kept them from being almost every day down to once every three months or so.

I am interested in the imitrex injectable. Glad to see someone has used it and it helped.
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Avatar_f_tn
I am doctor and my wife was a medical mystery to me and all her doctors. Finally, started treating these 6-8 hour episodes as abdominal migraines... Her symptoms abdominal pain (global), nausea (occasional vomiting), nocturnal (not exclusively), with associated symptoms of hyperesthesia, pain that also seemed to occur in chest, back of neck/shoulders, occasional midline over spine.  After several years she ended up on tons of morphine and it didn't give her any quality to life. When her docs started treating as abdominal migraine first tried topamax (helped but side effects) then keppra (modest help) FINALLY LYRICA. It was like a light switch! Kept them from being almost every day down to once every three months or so.

I am interested in the imitrex injectable. Glad to see someone has used it and it helped.
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Avatar_f_tn
She has been off of all morphine for several years. When she does get an attack. Ativan and extra lyrica maybe zofran. Goes to sleep wakes fine.
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Avatar_f_tn
She has been off of all morphine for several years. When she does get an attack. Ativan and extra lyrica maybe zofran. Goes to sleep wakes fine.
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Avatar_f_tn
She had been scoped many times. Many CT scan. Had her gall bladder and appendix out. Have does have ulcerative colitis but this abdominal migraine pain does not coincide with UC flairs. Those are clearly separate.
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She had been scoped many times. Many CT scan. Had her gall bladder and appendix out. Have does have ulcerative colitis but this abdominal migraine pain does not coincide with UC flairs. Those are clearly separate.
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