Coexisting medical conditions are multiple illnesses or health conditions that can occur at the same time. These conditions may be either or they may be independent from each other. One person with migraine may suffer from depression, while another migraine sufferer may have asthma. Both asthma and depression are coexisting conditions with migraine
Diagnosing and acknowledging the presence of migraine and coexisting conditions are important steps toward developing a successful migraine management program. For the migraine sufferer, it is important to realize that there are two or more conditions that treatment and to work with the physician to develop a plan that is compatible with your lifestyle.
Diagnosing and appropriately managing migraine and coexisting medical conditions are also important because many health conditions can increase the frequency or severity of migraine attacks. If you can gain control over the coexisting condition, the migraine attacks may lessen in frequency or severity. In addition, some medicine can treat both conditions at the same time.
The particular characteristics coexisting conditions obviously will have an effect on the specific treatment plan designed for each migraine sufferer. Treating the headache and the coexisting condition at the same time may reduce the amount of time you miss from work and leisure activities. An individually designed headache treatment plan should reduce the pain experienced during the migraine as well as the disabilities associated with it, allowing the sufferer to return to normalcy at a quicker pace.
Acute treatment allows the migraine patient to be pain-free and able to return to normal functioning as quickly as possible, without having the migraine attack return. Some migraine sufferers require medication that will either prevent the migraine from beginning or will reduce the recurrence and force of attacks when they do occur.
These medicines are used by patients who experience either frequent or disabling migraines. Fortunately, these medications are often beneficial for treatment of coexisting conditions. The presence of coexisting conditions must be screened because some migraine medications may not be appropriate for use in the presence of certain coexisting conditions.
Here are a few steps to begin: when launching a program:
- Step 1: Learn about each condition.The doctor and other health care providers should be able to answer questions and explain what migraine is and how the various medications can help.
Step 2: Follow the treatment plan that is agreed upon by you and the physician.
Make sure that you understand specifically what you should upon the onset of the next migraine.
Take only those medications specifically prescribed by your doctor and in the exact dosage prescribe. Never take more of a medicine that recommended.
Take acute medications as soon as it becomes obvious that the headache is really a migraine.
Keep your medications with you at all times.
If prescribed preventive therapies, follow the treatment plan EXACTLY as agreed upon. If the treatment plan is too hard to follow or is one you do not like, tell your doctor.
Step 3: Monitor headaches.One important part of migraine management is being able to recognize improvement or deterioration in migraine. A headache calendar will help identify headache patterns, triggers, and responses to treatments.
Step 4: Keep follow-up appointments.It is very important to make and keep all follow-up appointments with your healthcare provider. This will allow for modification of the treatment plan to make it most effective. It will also allow your healthcare provider to monitor side effects.
Other important tips to remember…
Use the medications as prescribed by your doctor.
Acute medication may not work every time. Taking medications early in the course of the attack will increase the chances that the medication will work.
Learn when to use and how to use prescribed rescue medications.
Preventive medication may take weeks or months to show improvement.
Call the doctor if side effects from medications occur.
Record headache activity on a daily basis using a headache calendar.
Make and keep follow-up appointments with the doctor.