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Headaches plague nearly everyone at some point in their lives, but migraines take the pain to a whole new level. The pain is amplified until the patient is nauseated, dizzy, sensitive to light, and sometimes completely debilitated from it. Even worse, migraines often cause chronic pain in those suffering from them. This pain makes it difficult (and often impossible) to work, attend school, perform household activities, spend time with family and friends, and otherwise live a normal or fulfilled life, especially for those experiencing chronic migraines. Such patients deserve treatment options that will work for them and ketamine treatment for migraines will help at Mindscape Ketamine & Infusion Therapy.
Current Treatment Options for Migraine Patients
Migraine treatments come in a variety of forms and with as many different purposes. Some are meant to alleviate the pain once it begins, others try to prevent them from being triggered in the first place, and others still will only treat associated symptoms like nausea and light sensitivity. Such medications and treatments include:
- Other pain relief medications
- Opioid medications
- Dihydroergotamine (which are usually available as a nasal spray)
- NSAIDS (non-steroidal anti-inflammatories)
- Cold packs
- Anti-seizure medications and antidepressants.
However, many patients find themselves unable to find pain relief from any of the above treatment options long term, in which case they may benefit from regular ketamine treatment for migraines.
Why Migraines Require More Attention
Migraines are incredibly commonplace, affecting between 38 and 50 million people in the United States alone. Of that number, over 90% are completely incapable of working or functioning normally in their daily lives while they’re in the middle of a migraine. Additionally, given that migraines can last anywhere between a few minutes and several hours, occasionally even days, it’s no surprise that this debilitating condition warrants so much time, money, and attention.
Most medications focus on either trying to prevent the onset of a migraine or treating the symptoms once they’ve begun. Normal pain relievers or opioids may make them more manageable for some patients, but for many, they’re completely useless. Those who seem unresponsive to the more readily available medications should not and can not simply give up and accept a low quality of life because of their pain, though. That’s where ketamine treatment for migraines come in.
When is Ketamine Treatment Recommended?
Patients with refractory chronic migraine headaches (meaning patients who have been unresponsive to other treatment options and still desperately need pain relief) are usually eligible for ketamine treatments, which can be administered either through an IV or nasal spray. The patient’s pain scores would be regularly monitored throughout their treatment to make sure the ketamine is working, and if the patient’s pain conditions improve, treatment is provided at regular intervals (to be determined by the physician).
Intravenous ketamine infusions and intranasal ketamine are not yet widespread treatments for migraines, but they are available to those who have tried everything else and still suffer from severe migraine pain on a regular basis. Intractable migraine patients have participated in a number of studies regarding the effects of ketamine on the condition. Depending on the study, anywhere between 92%-100% of participants reported a significant decrease in migraine pain and improvement in their quality of life.
How Does Ketamine Treatment Work?
Ketamine was originally used as a general anesthetic thanks to its dissociative properties. However, when used in much smaller concentrations, it has been proven to be an effective remedy for chronic pain of multiple kinds. It works by inhibiting NMDA, opioid, nicotinic, cholinergic, muscarinic, and monoaminergic pain receptors, all but blocking the body from feeling the pain that these receptors control. It has even shown value as a treatment for complex regional pain.
Patients can see a drastic improvement in their pain levels in as little as a couple of days up to a few weeks, depending on the dosage levels and the severity of their pain. Once they start showing improvement, their physician can set up a regular plan for infusions or nasal sprays so that the patient can maintain their new quality of life.
Talk to Your Doctor About Ketamine Treatments Today
If you’ve already tried all other remedies and treatments but have yet to find freedom from this debilitating condition, ask your doctor how he or she feels about ketamine infusions and if they know of a facility nearby that would be able to provide more information. Because this treatment has still been in the testing phases recently, it may not be something that your primary care physician can provide on their own. However, you’ll likely be able to find facilities within driving distance who administer ketamine infusions for migraine pain and have documented studies showing high levels of success for this treatment option.
Your pain should not go ignored, and even if you’re struggling to find relief through means that are more readily available, you shouldn’t give up. There are alternatives available that may be able to completely change your life and give back your ability to enjoy a new, pain-free or pain-managed life.
Schedule a free COMPLIMENTARY consultation today with MindScape Ketamine & Infusion Therapy, PLLC so that we may help you Live Life Again.