Cefaly II for Migraine Prevention - Additional Info

CefalyIIYesterday, I told you about the new Cefaly II that's now available in the United States for Migraine prevention. People in the UK and Canada wondered if and when it would be available to them. So, I asked for additional information. The Cefaly II will be available in Europe (including the UK) in September. I don't have an availability date for Canada yet, but will let you know when I did.

There's also additional information for people in the U.S. who already have the Cefaly I. People with the Cefaly I can order the Cefaly II without getting a new prescription. Your original prescription will be honored for the Cefaly II. Also, you will receive two sets of three electrodes at no additional charge.

I hope the additional information is helpful. If you missed my original post about the launch of the Cefaly II, just follow this link — New Cefaly II Launched for Migraine Prevention.

Live well,

PurpleRibbonTiny Teri1

 

 because a migraine is NOT "just a headache"

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January 2011 Migraine and Headache Blog Carnival: Taking Charge in 2011

BlogCarnival125 Welcome to the January, 2011, Headache and Migraine Disease Blog Carnival!

The Headache & Migraine Disease Blog Carnival has been created to provide both Migraine and headache patients and people who blog about Migraines and headaches with opportunities to share ideas on topics of particular interest and importance to us.

The theme of the January carnival is "Taking Charge of Our Migraines in 2011."

Are you ready to read some great posts? Here we go...

The February 2011 carnival will be on the theme of "Romantic Relationships & Migraines: How are they affected? Is is possible to build a new one? Does anything about living with a chronic condition bring you closer?" Submissions will be due on Friday, February 11, and the carnival will be posted at Somebody Heal Me on Monday, February 14. You can submit entries by sending them to this email address or by using the blogcarnival.com website.

All of us wish you the very best in 2011. May we all have fewer Migraines and more joy.

Live well,


 

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© Teri Robert, 2011.
Last updated January 10, 2011.


New Migraine Site Launched at Migraine.com

MigraineCom175w Migraine disease impacts 37 million people in the United States alone. Migraines can be debilitating, frightening, frustrating, and isolating. The Internet has opened many doors for Migraineurs. We now have more information available than ever before. Still, the need for educational information, support, and advocacy continues, and Internet sites that are accurate and unbiased continues.

Today, a new Migraine site is officially launching at Migraine.com. For a few months now, a team has been working to add content to Migraine.com, and I'm pleased to be one of the patient advocates and bloggers writing for the site. I'm impressed by the knowledge and passion of everyone involved with the site.

On Migraine.com, you can find:

  • Informative articles about Migraine disease, the types of Migraines, Migraine treatments, Migraine Triggers, and more.
  • Blogs by two great Migraine specialists, Dr. Susan Hutchinson and Dr. Dawn Marcus.
  • Blogs by patient advocates and bloggers whom you probably already know:
  • A discussion forum.
  • An "Ask the Experts" section where you can ask your Migraine related questions.
  • A Migraine Symptom Checker
  • A section of Patient Stories where you can read about other people and their Migraines.

The site has an online Migraine Journal with great new features coming for 2011.

To encourage Migraineurs to share their story, one of the first 500 people who register as a member at Migraine.com and write their Patient Story will win an Apple iPad!

One person has already asked me a question that I know more of you will ask - Does my writing on Migraine.com mean I'll stop any of the work on the other sites I write for or own? No. I will be continuing with my other work as well. We Migraineurs need all the good resources we can get!

Come check out Migraine.com soon!

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© Teri Robert, 2010
Last updated December 21, 2010


FDA Has Approved Botox for Chronic Migraine

Botox100 If you have chronic Migraines, you'll be interested to learn that the FDA has approved Botox for the treatment of chronic Migraines.

Chronic Migraine is defined as Migraines 15 or more days a month, lasting at least four hours per day.

Botox has been used off-label for Migraine for quite some time. What does the FDA approval mean for patients?

Read more in Botox Approved by FDA for Chronic Migraine.

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© Teri Robert, 2010
Last updated October 19, 2010


FDA Approves Botox for Migraine

Botox100

 

The FDA approved Botox for Migraine prevention on Friday, October 15. Please check back here for more details in the next few days.


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© Teri Robert, 2010
Last updated October 15, 2010.


Botox for Migraine: Sept., 2010, Update

Botox100 Clinical trials to determine the efficacy of Botox (botulinum toxin type A) for Migraine prevention have been underway for several years. During this time, some doctors have used Botox off-label for their patients. Let's take a look at where things stand now, in September of 2010.

A bit of background: Off-label prescribing or usage of medications is very common. "Off-label" simply means using a medication for a purpose other than those for which the FDA has specifically approved it. Once a medication is approved by the FDA for human use, it's both legal and legitimate for doctors to prescribe it for other conditions when they believe it will be helpful. Migraine preventive medications are a perfect example of off-label prescribing. Of the more than 100 medications in use today, none of them were originally developed for MIgraine treatment. They were all developed for other conditions, then found to work as preventives for some Migraineurs. Four of them were put through the additional clinical trials to win formal FDA approval for Migraine prevention:

  1. propranolol, a beta blocker, brand name Inderal
  2. timolol, a beta blocker, brand name Blocadren
  3. divalproex sodium, a neuronal stabilizing agent (anticonvulsant), brand name Depakote
  4. topiramate, a neuronal stabilizing agent (anticonvulsant), brand name Topamax

What's NOT permitted:

It's legal to prescribe medications off-label, BUT it's not legal for pharmaceutical companies to promote or advertise a medication for any purpose for which it's not FDA approved. That means that Allergan, the manufacturer of Botox, may promote and advertise it for the purposes for which it is already approved - cosmetic purposes, blepharospasm, cervical dystonia, hyperhidrosis, strabismus, and upper limb spasticity. Promoting it for off-label use constitutes what the FDA calls "misbranding," and it's illegal.

Recently, Allergan was in the news when they agreed to pleas guilty and pay a $600 million fine to resolve allegations that they had promoted Botox off-label.

A point that needs to be understood about this is that the issue was NOT about doctors using Botox off=label. It was entirely about allegations that Allergan had promoted it for purposes other than those for which it was FDA approved. So, it has nothing to do with the medication itself, but about marketing and promotion practices.

Good news of progress:

Botox was recently approved in the UK for treating Migraine. In the U.S., the FDA is currently reviewing clinical trial data about Botox and Allergan's application for FDA approval of Botox for Migraine treatment. Many Migraineurs are hopeful that FDA approval will come soon. I've heard from many Migraineurs who would like to have the option for trying Botox for MIgraine prevention, but their insurance companies decline payment, saying that the treatment is "experimental" or "investigational."

If you've been wondering about Botox, you might be interested in reading Allergan's information about Botox History and Development, which includes a time line of when Botox was approved for various uses.

Live well,


 

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© Teri Robert, 2010
Last updated September 13, 2010


Migraine Matters: UK Migraine Awareness Week 2010

MigraineMatters175 September 5-11 is Migraine Awarenss Week 2010 in the United Kingdom. This year, The Migraine Trust, the sponsor of the awareness week, wants to highlight that one in seven people in the UK have Migraine disease. Their focus is on why "Migraine matters" and why it should be taken serously. They note that:

"Many people think that migraine doesn’t matter because it can’t kill you, it’s not contagious and it’s mostly episodic. Migraine is all too often trivialised as “just a headache” but we know that migraine can be extremely disabling and can destroy peoples' lives."

Migraine matters because...

Migraine affects millions of people:

  • 1 in 7 people suffer from the condition, that’s over 8 million people in the UK alone (37 million in the U.S.).
  • Migraine affects 8% of men, 18% of women.
  • More people have Migraine than diabetes, epilepsy and asthma combined.

Migraine is potentially disabling:

  • The World Health Organisation has listed migraine in the 20 most disabling conditions.
  • Symptoms can include throbbing head pain, nausea, vomiting, neck pain, increased sensitivity to light and sound, temporary blindness, temporary one-sided paralysis, disturbed vision, and much more.
  • 80% of people say that their migraines cause them severe pain.

Migraine destroys lives:

  • Migraine disrupts education, employment, family and social life - everything.
  • An estimated 25 million days are lost from work or school every year because of migraine.
  • Migraines can continue for a lifetime.

The Migraine Trust needs our help with getting the word out, no matter where we live. Migraine Awareness anywhere benefits Migraineurs everywhere. The Migraine Trust has special events scheduled for Awareness Week, including:

  • The Adidas Women's 5K Challenge
  • Migraine and Headache - an information event with leading Migraine experts

For information on these events and ways we can help, please visit their Migraine Matters information page.

Migraine Action in the UK is also observing awareness week with emphasis on Migraine in the workplace. You can read more HERE.

You can also find awareness week information on the site of the Migraine Association of Ireland, HERE.

Live well,


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© Teri Robert, 2010
Last updated August 28, 2010.


Food and Migraines - Friends? Enemies?

Nutrition100Food and Migraines. That's a common topic and a common subject of questions I receive.

One subject of questions is which foods can trigger Migraines, and how do you figure out what foods, if any, are triggers for you. The best way to determine if you have food triggers and what they are is to do an elimination diet and keep a good Migraine diary. During an elimination diet, you begin by eliminating a list of potential trigger foods. Then, you add them back into your diet, one food per week. Keeping a Migraine diary during this process helps you determine if the foods you're adding back in are triggers. It's important to note that a food or beverage can trigger a Migraine up to 48 hours after you consume it. Some of us have food triggers; so9me don't. Trigger identification and management is a vital part of Migraine management. Here are some tools to help you determine if you have any food triggers:

Another subject of questions I receive is whether there are foods that can prevent Migraines. The answer to that kind of question is, "No, but..." There aren't specific foods that can help prevent Migraines, but good nutrition actually can help us. You can read more about this in the article Migraines and Food Choices.

For those of us who do have food triggers, it can be really irritating, BUT once we identify which foods are triggers, we can avoid some of our Migraines by avoiding those foods. That's good. That's far easier to cope with than those triggers that we can't avoid.

Good nutrition can seem like a lot of work, especially for those of us who have chronic Migraines with so many days when we don't feel like cooking. With some planning, good nutrition is as difficult to achieve as you may think. If you want some help with this, you can also ask our doctor to set you up for a consultation with a dietitian or nutritionist.

Overall, foods can be our friends or our enemies.The good part of that is that we can work to identify those that are our enemies and avoid them.

Live well,


 

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Page copy protected against web site content infringement by Copyscape© Teri Robert, 2010
Last updated June 11, 2010