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Fioricet for Migraines

Ask anyone who suffers from migraines and they will tell you it’s no fun having this medical condition. Migraines are a neurological disorder characterized by severe pulsating headaches, nausea, and sensitivity to light and sound. Some people even experience auditory and visual hallucinations. A migraine can last anywhere from 2 to 72 hours and typically only affect one side of head.

Causes of Migraines

Though many studies have been done on migraines, the exact cause of these intense headaches remains unknown. However, they are often triggered by internal and environmental factors. These triggers include hormonal changes (particularly in women), consumption of certain foods like alcohol and aspartame, stress, sensory stimuli like bright lights, changes in sleep patterns, and certain medications.

Each person is different, so migraine triggers will vary between patients. It is a good idea to maintain a record of your daily activities and the foods you eat. This can help you and your doctor pinpoint possible triggers which, in turn, can assist you with avoiding the onset of migraines.

Treating Migraines with Fioricet

Over 37 million people in the United States suffer from migraines. The primary treatment option is to use medication to alleviate the symptoms of a migraine or prevent one from occurring in the first place. One medication that is sometimes prescribed off-label to patients is Fioricet. This pharmaceutical drug is a combination of three substances: acetaminophen, butalbital, and caffeine. It is commonly prescribed to treat tension, muscle contraction, and post-dural headaches.

The primary active ingredient in aspirin, acetaminophen is a pain reliever and fever reducer. Caffeine is a stimulant that improves blood flow by relaxing the muscle contractions in blood vessels. Butalbital is a barbiturate, a central nervous system depressant that also relaxes muscle contractions and has a sedation effect on the body.

The medication is generally well tolerated by those who use it. Based on reviews by patients, it quickly relieves severe headaches and migraines enough for people suffering from them to function in their daily lives. Like all pharmaceutical drugs, however, there is a risk of developing side effects such as:

  • Dizziness
  • Lightheadedness
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Shortness of breath
  • Stomach pain
  • Drowsiness
  • Feeling of intoxication and/or euphoria
  • Sedation

Rarely, the use of Fioricet may cause Stevens-Johnson syndrome, which is a life-threatening skin condition caused by an adverse reaction to barbiturates. Overuse of the drug can induce or worsen headaches, so it is important that you follow your physician’s instructions when using this medication. Additionally, it should not be used with other stimulant drugs like those prescribed for ADHD.

Use Fioricet with Care

Fioricet contains butabital, which is a barbiturate. Though it is not a controlled substance like other pain medications, misuse and abuse of Fioricet can lead to substance dependence. Following your doctor’s instructions for usage can go a long way towards preventing abuse of or addiction to the drug. If you suspect that you have developed a physical or psychological dependence on Fioricet, seek medical attention as soon as possible.

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