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    headaches wake me up between 2-4am
    mortch posted:
    I am a 49 y/o prof female who has experienced headaches since 2nd grade. I had a period of relief about 15-20 yrs ago when I was put on Cardizem CD for prevention. I discontinued this and anaprox many yrs ago after the Dr suspected it one of them was causing excessive lethargy and other issues. I was pretty much headache free until about three years ago. I would have about one or two severe migraines a year but nothing chronic.

    Three yrs ago I was hospitalized for a week with a migraine. Since then I have had signif. increase of migraine. The pattern of headache is the same as when I was young.

    I experience frequent early am headaches that wake me up between 2-4 am. It is usually a dull start between the eyes and if I don't get out of bed it will continue to worsen so I get up. I have been taking Maxalt when needed. I have light sensitivity and it usually becomes one sided over an eye/sometimes just between eyes. Most morning headaches don't turn into a full blown migraine. I also will get migraines during the day..usually towards the end and especially if I have worked long hours and get excessively tired.

    It seems when I get a headached my brain becomes fired up and it begins a cycle of headaches for a couple of weeks. I end up going through Maxalt frequently. I don't take advil or anything else. Cannot take NSAIDS.

    Recently I tried Topomax for a couple of weeks but even on lowest dose I was too sedated and had trouble functioning at work...I drive a lot and could not stay awake. This has been discontued. I am trying to take extra magnesium/calcium and high quality fish oil. I am considering returning to Cardizem CD but am concerned about side effects.

    Have you ever heard of these early morning headaches? Is it a sleep disorder (my husband wonders). I feel like my brain has never recovered from the migraine three years it went into overdrive, headache-wise. This interferes with my life so much but i keep going. I hate to miss work so I just try to plug along.

    I would appreciate any direction.
    Timothy Collins, MD responded:
    Morning headaches like this can be a normal migraine type headache. There are some sleep disorders like sleep apnea can also cause morning headaches just like this.

    If you have not been on other medications for prevention, you might want to talk with your doctor about verapamil (very unlikely to cause drowsiness) or zonisamide (similar to topiramate, but you may not have the drowsiness with this one)

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