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Headache and Migraine Medications
(listed alphabetically)

O-P

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oxycodone/acetaminophen
  • Rx, narcotic analgesic, opioid
  • Brand names (U.S.) Endocet, Roxicet, Roxilox, Tylox
  • Brand names (Canada): Endocet, Oxycocet, Percocet, Roxicet
  • Oxycodone may cause addiction and withdrawal symptoms as well as other harmful effects in an unborn baby. Do not take acetaminophen and oxycodone without first talking to your doctor if you are pregnant.
  • Oxycodone may also cause addiction and withdrawal symptoms in a nursing baby. Do not take acetaminophen and oxycodone without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
  • be sure to tell your doctor if you have kidney disease; liver disease; asthma; urinary retention; an enlarged prostate; hypothyroidism; seizures or epilepsy; gallbladder disease; a head injury; or Addison's disease.
  • sedating
  • potentially addictive
  • strong potential for rebound headaches
  • be sure to tell your doctor if you have kidney disease; liver disease; asthma; urinary retention; an enlarged prostate; hypothyroidism; seizures or epilepsy; gallbladder disease; a head injury; or Addison's disease.
  • Do not take acetaminophen and oxycodone if you have taken a monoamine oxidase inhibitor MAOI such as isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), or tranylcypromine (Parnate) in the last 14 days. Dangerous side effects could result.
  • The most serious interactions affecting acetaminophen and oxycodone are with those drugs that also cause sedation. The following drugs may lead to dangerous sedation if taken with acetaminophen and oxycodone: antihistamines; tricyclic antidepressants; other commonly used antidepressants; anticholinergics; phenothiazines such as chlorpromazine (Thorazine), fluphenazine (Prolixin), thioridazine (Mellaril), and prochlorperazine (Compazine); and tranquilizers and sedatives.
  • Potential side effects:
    • Discontinue and contact your doctor immediately if you experience an allergic reaction (difficulty breathing; closing of your throat; swelling of your lips, tongue, or face; or hives); slow, weak breathing; seizures; cold, clammy skin; severe weakness or dizziness; unconsciousness; jaundice; or unusual fatigue, bleeding, or bruising.
    • Continue, but talk to your doctor if you experience constipation; dry mouth, nausea, vomiting, or decreased appetite; dizziness, tiredness, or lightheadedness; muscle twitches; sweating; itching; decreased urination; or decreased sex drive.

oxycodone/aspirin
  • Rx, narcotic analgesic, opioid
  • Brand names (U.S.): Endodan, Percodan, Roxiprin
  • Brand names (Canada): Endodan, Oxycodan, Percodan
  • Oxycodone may cause addiction and withdrawal symptoms as well as other harmful effects in an unborn baby. Do not take aspirin and oxycodone without first talking to your doctor if you are pregnant.
  • Oxycodone may also cause addiction and withdrawal symptoms in a nursing baby. Do not take aspirin and oxycodone without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
  • be sure to tell your doctor if you have kidney disease; liver disease; asthma; urinary retention; an enlarged prostate; hypothyroidism; seizures or epilepsy; gallbladder disease; a head injury; or Addison's disease.
  • sedating
  • potentially addictive
  • strong potential for rebound headaches
  • Do not take aspirin and oxycodone if you have taken a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) such as isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), or tranylcypromine (Parnate) in the last 14 days. Dangerous side effects could result.
  • Oxycodone may increase the effects of other drugs that cause drowsiness, including antidepressants, alcohol, antihistamines, sedatives (used to treat insomnia), other pain relievers, anxiety medicines, and muscle relaxants. Tell your doctor about all medicines that you are taking, and do not take any medicine unless your doctor approves.
  • be sure to tell your doctor if you are taking oral anticoagulants such as warfarin (Coumadin); nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID); other salicylates (forms of aspirin); steroids such as prednisone; probenecid (Benemid); sulfinpyrazone (Anturane); ACE inhibitors such as benazepril (Lotensin), captopril (Capoten), enalapril (Vasotec), lisinopril (Prinivil, Zestril), and others; beta-blockers such as acebutolol (Sectral), propranolol (Inderal), atenolol (Tenormin), metoprolol (Lopressor), and others; oral diabetes medications such as glipizide (Glucotrol) or glyburide (Micronase, Diabeta); lithium (Lithobid, Eskalith, others); or cyclosporine (Sandimmune, Neoral).
     

OxyContin® (oxycodone, time-release)
  • Rx, abortive, narcotic analgesic, opioid
  • time-release form of Oxycodone
  • for daily treatment of chronic pain, not as needed treatment of acute or episodic pain
  • sedating
  • potentially addictive
  • WARNING: Breaking or crushing OxyContin® tablets breaks the time-release mechanism and can lead to dangerous overdose. Do NOT take if tablets are damaged.
  • Do not share this medication with anyone. Keep in a safe place, away from children or anyone who might be tempted to "appropriate" your medication for their own use.
  • Oxycodone may increase the effects of other drugs that cause drowsiness, including antidepressants, other antihistamines, other pain relievers, anxiety medicines, seizure medicines, and muscle relaxants. Dangerous sedation, dizziness, or drowsiness may occur if oxycodone is taken with any of these medications.
  • Never take more oxycodone than is prescribed for you. Taking too much oxycodone could result in serious side effects, even death. If your pain is not being adequately treated, talk to your doctor.
  • FDA pregnancy category B. This means that it is unlikely to cause birth defects. However, oxycodone may cause addiction and withdrawal symptoms, difficulty breathing, as well as other harmful effects in a newborn baby when taken during pregnancy. Do not take oxycodone without first talking to your doctor if you are pregnant.
  • may cause addiction and withdrawal symptoms, difficulty breathing, and sedation in a nursing infant. Do not take oxycodone without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
  • Oxycodone is habit forming and should only be used under close supervision by patients with an alcohol or drug addiction.
  • be sure to tell your doctor if you have kidney disease; liver disease; asthma; urinary retention; an enlarged prostate; hypothyroidism; seizures or epilepsy; gallbladder disease; a head injury; or Addison's disease.
  • Potential side effects:
    • Discontinue and contact your doctor immediately if you experience an allergic reaction (difficulty breathing; closing of your throat; swelling of your lips, tongue, or face; or hives); slow, weak breathing; seizures; cold, clammy skin; severe weakness or dizziness; or unconsciousness.
    • Continue, but talk to your doctor if you experience constipation; dry mouth, nausea, vomiting, or decreased appetite; dizziness, tiredness, or lightheadedness; muscle twitches; sweating; itching; decreased urination; or decreased sex drive.
  • See:
    • OxyContin®: The Saga Continues!
      The prescription pain killer OxyContin has become a drug of abuse. What's true, what's not, who's being hurt? Of major concern: will the abuse affect patients who legitimately need it?
    • OxyContin®: What's the REAL Issue?
      Does the "Oxy" controversy endanger the rights of legitimate patients? Who is most responsible for the abuse of OxyContin®. Discussion from the press, comments from our members, and your chance to tell us what YOU think.
    • OxyContin® Problem— Not That Complicated
      This Law Enforcement Issue Should NOT Drive Medical Policy Toward Those In Pain. MAGNUM and About team up to provide vital information on accurate statistics, Congressional & Public hearings, and much more of concern to ALL chronic pain patients.
  • FDA approved package insert
     

Pamelor  (nortriptyline)
  • See nortriptyline

Paxil  (paroxetine)
  • Rx, SSRI antidepressant (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor), Migraine preventive
  • FDA pregnancy category C. This means that it is not known whether it will be harmful to an unborn baby. Do not take paroxetine without first talking to your doctor if you are pregnant or could become pregnant during treatment.
  • passes into breast milk and may affect a nursing baby. Do not take paroxetine without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
  • Be sure to tell your doctor if you have tell your doctor if you have liver disease, kidney disease, seizures or epilepsy, or a manic disorder or suicidal thoughts.
  • Do not take paroxetine if you have taken a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) such as isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), or tranylcypromine (Parnate) during the last 2 weeks. Serious, and sometimes fatal, reactions have occurred when these medicines have been used together.
  • Fo not take paroxetine if you are taking thioridazine (Mellaril). Dangerous, even fatal irregular heartbeats may occur if these medicines are taken together. You must wait 5 weeks after stopping paroxetine before taking thioridazine (Mellaril).
  • Be sure to tell your doctor if you are taking any medications, especially:
    • benzodiazepines such as Valium, Xanax, Librium, etc.;
    • tricyclic antidepressants such as Elavil, Tofranil, Pamelor, etc.;
    • phenothiazines such as Thorazine, Serentil, Compazine, etc.;
    • Triptans: Imitres/Sumatriptan, Amerge/Naratriptan, Maxalt/Rizatriptan, Zomig/Zolmitriptan, Axert/Almotriptan, Frova/Frovatriptan.
    • carbamazepine (Tegretol) or phenytoin (Dilantin);
    • lithium (Lithobid, Eskalith, others);
    • theophylline (Theobid, Theolair, Theochron, Elixophyllin, and others);
    • warfarin (Coumadin);
    • digoxin (Lanoxin);
    • cimetidine (Tagamet, Tagamet HB).
  • Potential side effects:
    • Discontinue Paxil and contact your doctor immediately if you experience an allergic reaction (difficulty breathing; closing of the throat; swelling of the lips, tongue, or face; or hives); an irregular heartbeat or pulse; low blood pressure (dizziness, weakness); high blood pressure (severe headache, blurred vision); unusual bleeding or bruising; or fever or chills.
    • Continue taking Paxil, but contact your doctor, if you experience headache; tremor, nervousness, or anxiety; nausea, diarrhea, dry mouth, or changes in appetite or weight; sleepiness or insomnia; or decreased sex drive, impotence, or difficulty having an orgasm.

Percocet 
  • See: oxycodone/acetaminophen

Percodan
  • See: oxycodone/aspirin

Phenergan (Promethazine) 
  • Rx, antiemetic, neuroleptic
  • Promethazine is an antihistamine; used to treat allergic symptoms and reactions such as itching, runny nose; sneezing; itchy, watery eyes; hives; and itchy skin rashes. Also used to cause sedation (sleep), to assist in controlling postoperative pain, to control nausea and vomiting (especially after surgery), and to prevent motion sickness. Also helps other medications work better.
  • oral, injectable, and suppositories
  • FDA pregnancy category C. This means that it is not known whether promethazine will harm an unborn baby. Do not take promethazine without first talking to your doctor if you are pregnant or if you are planning a pregnancy.
  • It is not known whether promethazine passes into breast milk. Do not take promethazine without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
  • Be sure to tell your doctor if you have epilepsy or another seizure disorder; been diagnosed with sleep apnea (periods of not breathing during sleep); glaucoma; an ulcer or an obstruction in your stomach; bladder problems or difficulty urinating; high blood pressure or any type of heart disease; or liver problems.
  • Potential side effects:
    • Discontinue and contact your doctor immediately if you experience an allergic reaction (difficulty breathing; closing of your throat; swelling of your lips, tongue, or face; or hives); uncontrollable movements of your eyes, lips, tongue, face, arms, or legs; jaundice; or abdominal pain.
    • Continue, but talk to your doctor if you experience dizziness, drowsiness, sleepiness, or confusion; blurred vision or a dry mouth; nausea or vomiting; or increased sensitivity to sunlight.

Prednisone 
  • Rx, corticosteroid, anti-inflammatory
  • Brand Names (U.S.): Cordrol, Deltasone, Liquid Pred, Meticorten, Orasone, Prednicot, Prednisone Intensol, Pred-Pak, Sterapred,
  • Brand Names (Canada):Apo-Prednisone, Deltasone, Winpred
  • most appropriate for intractable migraine and cluster headaches
  • used in a short course and tapered off
  • FDA pregnancy category C. This means that it is not known whether prednisone will harm an unborn baby. Do not take this medication without first talking to your doctor if you are pregnant.
  • passes into breast milk. Do not take prednisone without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
  • Do not take any other over-the-counter or prescription medications, including herbal products, during treatment with prednisone without first talking to your doctor. Many other medicines can interact with prednisone resulting in side effects or altered effectiveness of the medications. Be sure to tell your doctor about all medications you are taking.
  • Be sure to tell your doctor if you have kidney disease, liver disease, high blood pressure or heart disease, ulcerative colitis, diverticulitis, or stomach ulcers, hypothyroidism, a psychiatric condition, osteoporosis, myasthenia gravis, diabetes mellitus, or any other medical conditions.
  • Potential side effects:
    • Discontinue and contact your doctor immediately if you experience an allergic reaction (difficulty breathing; closing of your throat; swelling of your lips, tongue, or face; or hives); increased blood pressure (severe headache or blurred vision); or sudden weight gain (more than 5 pounds in a day or two).
    • Continue, but talk with your doctor if you experience insomnia; nausea, vomiting, or stomach upset; fatigue or dizziness; muscle weakness or joint pain; problems with diabetes control; or increased hunger or thirst.
    • Rare side effects, usually with high doses of prednisone, include acne, increased hair growth, thinning of the skin, cataracts, glaucoma, osteoporosis, roundness of the face, and changes in behavior. Contact your doctor immediately if you experience any of these effects.

Propranolol 
  • Rx, beta blocker, antihypertensive, Migraine preventive
  • Brand names:
    • U.S.: Inderal, Inderal LA
    • Canada: Apo-Propranolol, Detensol, Inderal, Inderal LA, Novopranol, pms Propranolol
  • FDA pregnancy category C. This means it is not known whether propranolol will harm an unborn baby. Do not take this medication without first talking to your doctor if you are pregnant or could become pregnant during treatment
  • passes into breast milk but generally has little effect on a nursing infant. Do not take this medication without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
  • Be sure to consult your doctor before using Propranolol in combination with: Allergen immunotherapy (allergy shots), Aminophylline, Dyphylline, Oxtriphylline, Theophylline, Antidiabetics, oral (diabetes medicine you take by mouth), Insulin, Calcium channel blockers, Clonidine, Guanabenz, Monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitors.
  • Be sure your doctor is aware if you have any of the following conditions: Allergies, Asthma, Bronchitis, Emphysema, Bradycardia, Diabetes mellitus, Kidney disease, Liver disease, Mental depression, Myasthenia gravis, Psoriasis, Overactive thyroid.
  • Potential side effects:
    • Check with your doctor as soon as possible if you experience: breathing difficulty and/or wheezing; cold hands and feet; mental depression; shortness of breath; slow heartbeat; swelling of ankles, feet, and/or lower legs; back pain or joint pain; chest pain; confusion; dizziness or lightheadedness when getting up from a lying or sitting position; fever and sore throat; hallucinations; irregular heartbeat; red, scaling, or crusted skin; skin rash; unusual bleeding and bruising
    • These side effects generally stop as you become accustomed to the medication. If not, or if they are bothersome, contact your doctor: Decreased sexual ability; dizziness or lightheadedness; drowsiness; trouble in sleeping; unusual tiredness or weakness; anxiety and/or nervousness; constipation; diarrhea; dry, sore eyes; itching of skin; nausea or vomiting; nightmares and vivid dreams; numbness and/or tingling of fingers and/or toes; stomach discomfort; stuffy nose

Prozac (fluoxetine)
  • Rx, SSRI (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor), Migraine preventive
  • Brand names:
    • U.S.: Prozac, Prozac Weekly, Serafem
    • Canada: Prozac
  • FDA pregnancy category C. This means it is not known whether fluoxetine will harm an unborn baby. Do not take this medication without first talking to your doctor if you are pregnant or could become pregnant during treatment.
  • passes into breast milk and may affect a nursing infant. Do not take fluoxetine without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby. 
  • Be sure to tell your doctor if you have liver disease; kidney disease; diabetes; seizures; mania or have suicidal thoughts.
  • Potential side effects:
    • Discontinue and check with your doctor as soon as possible if you experience: an allergic reaction (difficulty breathing; closing of the throat; swelling of the lips, tongue, or face; or hives); an irregular heartbeat or pulse; low blood pressure (dizziness, weakness); high blood pressure (severe headache, blurred vision); chills or fever; unusual bleeding or bruising; a rash or hives.
    • Continue, but check with your doctor, if you experience headache, tremor, nervousness, or anxiety; difficulty concentrating; nausea, diarrhea, dry mouth, or changes in appetite or weight; weakness; increased sweating; sleepiness or insomnia; or decreased sex drive, impotence, or difficulty having an orgasm.
       

Material on this page is for informational purposes only,
and should not be construed as medical advice.
Always consult your physician or pharmacist regarding medications.

 


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