Skip to content


    Exciting News for WebMD Members!

    We've been busy behind the scenes building new message boards for you. You'll have new and easier ways to find messages, connect with others, and share your stories.

    And, this will all be available on your smartphone or other mobile device!

    What Do You Need to Do?

    The message board you're used to will be closing in the coming weeks. While many of your boards will be making the move to our new home, your posts will not. Want to keep a discussion going? Save posts you want to continue (this includes your member profile story), so that you can re-post them in the new message boards.

    Keep an eye here and on your email inbox, we'll be back in touch soon to give you all the information you need!

    Yours in health,
    WebMD Message Boards Management

    Smell cigarette smoke - severe headache
    tallbarb99 posted:
    Many years ago, I was having severe (suicidal) headaches. I was at my wit's end. I was fortunate to be referred to a headache specialist who had me take 1 naproxen sodium (500 mg/ea) twice a day and 2 nortriptyline at bedtime. Result - no headaches - he saved my life. I still take the meds and am afraid to stop, so I won't unless I have to. About 3 years ago, I started smelling cigarette smoke (no other odors at all) when there was none - there are only 2 people in my home and we don't smoke - nobody I know smokes, either - not even the neighbors - so I know for a fact it's not somebody hiding in my basement My husband doesn't smell anything when this is happening - so I know it's just me. It is worse if I am reclining and there is pressure on the underside of my shoulder blades - I know, that sounds odd, but it's true. I am smelling smoke right now but it's not too bad because I'm sitting and not leaning on anything. I also experience dizzy spells - not often but every once in a while, I feel "whoaaaaaa" like I'm about to "go down" - faint, whatever you want to call it. I've had an MRI of the brain, got hooked up to a bunch of electrodes and nothing showed up that was concerning. Well, the fact that there's nothing obvious is concerning to ME. My whole family has issues with immune related diseases - I have GRAVES and GERD and Raynaud's on top of the headaches and smoke thing. I read on this forum that someone thought these odors might indicate small strokes - wouldn't that show up in the tests I've had? Anybody else have any suggestions? It's not like this affects my life all that badly - it's just annoying and I get irritable when it's happening. Especially since the smell of smoke makes my throat want to close up - gag!!

    Helpful Tips

    Migraine Prevention MedicationsExpert
    Which medications work for migraine prevention? This question comes up all the time, so I've made a list of some of the medications we use ... More
    Was this Helpful?
    83 of 112 found this helpful

    Related Drug Reviews

    • Drug Name User Reviews

    Report Problems With Your Medications to the FDA

    FDAYou are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

    For more information, visit the Duke Health Pain Disorders Center