John: Cefaly is a significant quality of life upgrade

Cefaly device
Name: John
Age: 56
Location: San Diego, CA
Years with Migraines: 20+
Occupation: Software Development Manager

How long have you had migraines?
I started getting ophthalmic migraines in 1980. The headaches with pain have been happening for about 20 years.

When do you usually get migraines?
It can happen anytime night or day. No trigger has been identified for me.

What have you tried pre-Cefaly?
-Over-the-counter pain meds
-Multiple prophylactic medications (topiramate, amitriptyline, Propranolol, etc.)
-Food log and diet changes (e.g. no gluten, no dairy, no coffee, tea or soda)
-Supplements
-Biofeedback
-Acupuncture
-Occipital nerve block
-Chiropractic
-Comprehensive allergy testing
-Ayurvedic medicine
-Coconut oil head-massage
-Full-body massage
-Yoga
-Hydration
-A variety of pillow and mattress types
-Ergonomic assessment at work station
-X-rays
-Cranial physical therapy
-Stopped chewing gum
-Charted sleep
-None of that worked and my Neurologist ordered neurotoxin injections. Before trying the injections I heard about Cefaly and passed on the injections. Almotriptan works for me but it’s a strong pill that I’d prefer not to take any more often than necessary.

What does your migraine feel like?
The pain starts at the base of my scull/back of my neck. It then moves to my right temple and behind my right eye. I don’t really have a hyper sensitivity to light or sound but do have constant pain that makes me irritable during headaches.

How did you hear about Cefaly?
In 2014 a friend sent this link to me: http://sacramento.cbslocal.com/2014/05/08/device-claims-to-prevent-brutal-migraines-without-drugs/

What’s your Cefaly experience like?
Prior to Cefaly I was getting migraines every 6 days on average. Immediately upon using the device the cadence went to a headache every 21 days on average. I’ve been using Cefaly since July 2014. This a significant quality of life upgrade. I look forward to the daily 20-minute “head massage.” My neurologist has now instructed me to try it when I feel a headache coming on even if I have already had my session that day. The double-down works sometimes but not every time.

The intensity of the headaches has not changed for me. I still need to take the only medication that works for me (Almotriptan) when I do get a headache but am happy that I’m taking the pill roughly once a month vs once a week.

What made you want to share your story?
This is one of only two “solutions” that has made a noticeable difference for me and this one is not a pill. I have heard first-hand that many of the things I’ve tried worked wonderfully for others. Our bodies are complex and you have to keep trying until you find what works.

Want to share your story too? We’d love to hear from you! Please send an email to m DOT coder AT cefaly DOT us. Please include your name, contact information, and let us know where you’re located so we can set up a good time to talk.

If you’re wondering if Cefaly is right for you, click here for more information and, of course, check with your doctor.

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Lane: Cefaly has made a difference for me!

Cefaly device

First Name: Lane
Age: 43
Location: Columbia, South Carolina
Years with Migraines: 32
Occupation: Stay at home mother/former makeup artist/retail manager

How long have you had migraines?
Since I was 11.

When do you usually get migraines?
Currently when I have my period or during ovulation. It used to be 95% of the time but with Cefaly and neurotoxin injections it is more during hormonal shifts. If I watch what and when I eat during my period and sleep enough (and always use my Cefaly II) then my head doesn’t bother me during my period. Nothing helps with ovulation yet. Hopefully mother nature takes care of that for me in a few years!

What have you tried pre-Cefaly?
Topiramate, metoprolol, tricyclic antidepressant, various triptans, etc.

What does your migraine feel like?
It’s agonizing, unilateral pulsating, and a pounding pain.

How did you hear about Cefaly?
My neurologist.

What’s your Cefaly experience like?
I really like it. it is very relaxing. I prefer the strongest setting (after I adjusted to the feeling. It can be strange at first). I do it right before bed. I’m not sure if it actually makes me sleepy or if it a sort of Pavlovian response as I always go to sleep soon afterwards. Most nights I watch TV shows or movies and do Cefaly! I feel like the non-hormonal days that I get a headache are the days I don’t use my Cefaly.

What made you want to share your story?
I know how debilitating migraines are, and the drugs that help us migraineurs get through the day can cause more migraines. Cefaly has made a difference for me!

Want to share your story too? We’d love to hear from you! Please send an email to m DOT coder AT cefaly DOT us. Please include your name, contact information, and let us know where you’re located so we can set up a good time to talk.

If you’re wondering if Cefaly is right for you, click here for more information and, of course, check with your doctor.

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Pregnant with Migraines: Month 5

Cefaly device

I’ve just completed my fifth month of pregnancy and I’m happy to say my migraines are improving. In fact, I’m quite close to my usual 3-to-5 migraines per month. If you’ve just stumbled onto this blog post, you can catch up on month 1month 2, month 3, and month 4by clicking on each month.

I still use my Cefaly every day. (Note: If you are pregnant or trying to conceive please check with your doctor if you can use Cefaly. Everybody is different and it’s important that you follow your doctor’s specific recommendation for you.) I’ve been approved by my own doctor to drink one can of caffeinated soda along with acetaminophen on occasion as a makeshift rescue medication. All in all, this second trimester has brought relief from my aching head, particularly as it nears the end.

We’ve learned in less than two weeks we will be moving into our new apartment. So, I’ve already set up an appointment to have a specialist come and measure the windows as we are purchasing some pricy dual blinds that allow us to better control the light in the apartment — since light is a huge trigger for me. I’ve also pinpointed some new floor lamps, torchiere-style, that allow me to dim the light to suit my daily needs and point up, not down. We’ve also invested in pricier paint that is more earth-friendly and also quickly airs out, so that the scent won’t trigger a migraine. I guess before I baby proof, I have to migraine proof!

Just in case this is the first blog post you’re reading in my pregnant with migraines diary, I want to once again disclose that I am the PR Manager for Cefaly in the United States. My experience is genuine and I want to make sure I comply with any blogging rules out there. You can read more about my story here.  

Also, are you a migraineur who is pregnant or trying to conceive? Want to share your story? Please email Maria at m.coder [at] cefaly.us.

Make sure to check back next month!

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Mindy: Cefaly will lessen 10 migraines a month for me

Name: Mindy
Age: 53
Location: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Years with Migraines: 30+ years
Occupation: Attorney

How long have you had migraines?
I’ve had migraines since I was in college.

When do you usually get migraines?
No definite triggers except for perfume and often bright lights and loud noises. I think chocolate contributes to my migraines.

What have you tried pre-Cefaly?
I’ve tried all of the migraine medications. Currently I’m on tricyclic antidepressant and Gabapentin as migraine preventives. I take Rizatriptan as a rescue medication but it often doesn’t work. Sometimes I take Ibuprofen. Sometimes they work and sometimes they don’t. I’ve also been doing neurotoxin injections for 2-3 years. That’s eliminated the migraines that start in the back of neck but it doesn’t work for the ones that start in my eyeball. I started using Cefaly since it became available in the U.S. in 2014. I find the neurotoxin injections and the Cefaly have worked well together because the injections work for the back on my head but I still get migraines in the front and eyeball regions and those can often be lessened or relieved by the Cefaly.

What does your migraine feel like?
It’s just like a knitting needle going through my eyeball and it’s usually on my left side. It starts on the left but will often spread — not to temples — but to forehead and to my scalp. It gets to the point where it’s hard to open my eyes. The knitting needle pain feels like a sharp stabbing pain through my eye and my scalp often feels like it’s in a vice grip, like it’s just being squeezed.

How did you hear about Cefaly?
I heard about it on the news when it first came out.

What’s your Cefaly experience like?
I first got Cefaly I when it came on the market and now I have Cefaly II, which is more compact so it’s easier to take along to work or on vacation. I don’t use the Cefaly daily so I can’t say how many migraines it would prevent.  I use Cefaly when I have a migraine and it feels very good while I’m doing it. It feels like the parts that hurt are getting a massage. Sometimes the Cefaly will relieve my migraine so it goes away.  When it doesn’t totally relieve it, then cefaly will usually reduces the pain. I often need to use Cefaly through 2-3 cycles in a row, so I am using it for 40 or 60 minutes.   When I have a bad headache or migraine and I can’t sleep at night because of it, then I’ll put the Cefaly on for a session or two and it will relieve it enough to put me to sleep.  Cefaly often makes me sleepy and I fall to sleep during the first or second session and take a short nap, which also helps relieve my migraine. Cefaly has definitely been positive for me. I do think you have to get used to it. It took me a couple weeks to get used to the sensation. I still rarely use it on maximum strength. I like Cefaly II because it can be increased immediately to the strength I need and then if I need to adjust it stronger or weaker then I can do that while wearing it.  The original cefaly takes about 5 minutes to get to the strength I need and once I stop it a specific point, I can not increase or decrease the strength, like I can with Cefaly II.   I’d say that in a month Cefaly will lessen 10 migraines for me and eliminate three to five migraines.

What made you want to share your story?
When I was thinking about trying Cefaly I wanted to see how it was working for other people but at that time there was no information. So, for the next person thinking about Cefaly I wanted to be able to give them my information to help them determine whether it might be right for them.

Want to share your story too? We’d love to hear from you! Please send an email to m DOT coder AT cefaly DOT us. Please include your name, contact information, and let us know where you’re located so we can set up a good time to talk.

If you’re wondering if Cefaly is right for you, click here for more information and, of course, check with your doctor.

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Kelly Gets Less Migraines Per Week with Cefaly

cefaly device

Name: Kelly
Age: 58
Location: Nashville, Tennessee
Years with Migraines: 25+
Occupation: Professor

How long have you had migraines?
For over twenty-five years.

When do you usually get migraines?
For two years straight, I had a headache every day. Then, I started getting them most afternoons. Now, I sometimes wake up with a headache that gets worse during the day.

What have you tried pre-Cefaly?
Everything. All types of preventative medications, yoga, bio-feedback, neurotoxin injections, and all kinds of herbal cures.

What does your migraine feel like?
Stabbing in the eye, or like a clamp on my brain. Sometimes it comes from my neck.

How did you hear about Cefaly?
My mom read about it in a newspaper.

What’s your Cefaly experience like?
It’s helped a lot!  Without drugs, it has cut my migraines in half. I still sometimes get migraine weeks when I’m really stressed or traveling, but with attention to diet (gluten-free, diary-free, soy-free–soy was a big one for me), I’m doing so much better.  Cefaly has helped so much to cut down the number of migraines I get per week. I went from pretty much every day to now maybe once a week.

What made you want to share your story?
Cefaly is truly amazing, especially since it isn’t a drug and doesn’t have the side-effects of most drugs. Migraine sufferers will do anything to get rid of the terrible pain. Cefaly actually helps.

Want to share your story too? We’d love to hear from you! Please send an email to m DOT coder AT cefaly DOT us. Please include your name, contact information, and let us know where you’re located so we can set up a good time to talk.

If you’re wondering if Cefaly is right for you, click here for more information and, of course, check with your doctor.

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Traci: Cefaly very much relieves the migraine pain

Cefaly device

Name: Traci
Age: 44
Location: Medina, Tennessee
Years with Migraines: 30+
Occupation: owns vending business

How long have you had migraines?
I’ve had migraines since puberty, my early teens; maybe even a few years before that.

When do you usually get migraines?
In the beginning I thought it was hormonal. As I got older it became clear it’s not necessarily that. Stress is a big trigger. If I go too long without eating during the day, that’s a trigger. Our work is very physical and anything that strains my neck or my back during the day will trigger a migraine as well.

What have you tried pre-Cefaly?
I took beta blockers for a year and also pain killers. For the past 15 years I took a tricyclic antidepressant as a preventive and it helped pretty well but not completely. When I have a migraine now — only if absolutely can’t take it anymore – I’ll take a sumatriptan succinate injection. I also use ketorolac, which is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug sometimes and that does help. When I feel like I might get a migraine, I take Ibuprofen and it will help a lot.

What does your migraine feel like?
My eyes just hurt and it’s a pain in my head that I can’t get rid of. Sometimes if I put pressure on the back of my neck and rub around that helps. It just feels like my head is going to explode.

How did you hear about Cefaly?
My dad is physician and he told me about it and we bought the first one immediately.

What’s your Cefaly experience like?
I use it exactly as was prescribed with the very first model, so every day as a preventive and it helped quite a bit. I find when it helps the most is when I’m getting a migraine or even I already have a bad one. I use Cefaly several times a day sometimes and it’s the only thing that gives me some relief. It’s able to take the pain away, I’m not sure how it does that but I’m happy about it. The newest Cefaly device, I love it! I don’t have any problems with it shutting off and I like that I can make it stay on the highest setting if I need to. Before I had the Cefaly I had migraines four times a month. Now I have migraines once a month or maybe once every 6 weeks.

What made you want to share your story?
I just think it’s a great alternative to pain medication and I’ve definitely had bad experiences with pain mediation. I just believe the product works. It very much relieves the pain for me for me when I’m in the middle of a migraine. It can only help. I don’t see this not being a benefit to anybody. I think this can really work if you use it like you’re supposed to.

Want to share your story too? We’d love to hear from you! Please send an email to m DOT coder AT cefaly DOT us. Please include your name, contact information, and let us know where you’re located so we can set up a good time to talk.

If you’re wondering if Cefaly is right for you, click here for more information and, of course, check with your doctor.

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Gail has 3-4 fewer migraines a month thanks to Cefaly

Name: Gail
Age: 36
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Years with Migraines: 33
Occupation: Photographer

How long have you had migraines?
I’ve had migraines since I was 3 years old. My mom actually remembers me telling her that I saw bright lights and that my head hurt and that I was going to throw up. It’s one of my earliest memories.

When do you usually get migraines?
I’ve identified some of them but it’s a moving target. Some of my migraines seem to be related to my monthly cycle. When my other auto-immune disorders are acting up (I have Crohn’s Disease) or when I’m in stressful situations, those tend to trigger migraine. A glass of red wine is what I call a “migraine in a bottle!” I’ve also had a headband start a migraine. Typically, I’ll get migraines in the evening. If I get one in the morning, then I know my day is shot.

What have you tried pre-Cefaly?
I’ve been in physical therapy for my neck and that’s helped to a degree. I’ve also tried acupuncture, and pain killers.

What does your migraine feel like?
My migraine usually starts in back of neck and it feels like it’s shooting toward my eye. I’m usually nauseated beforehand. When I feel pain creeping up the left side of my neck, I’m like uh oh. To me, it feels dull with an omnipresent dull stab (I wouldn’t’ call it a throb because I can’t feel my pulse in it).

How did you hear about Cefaly?
My nurse practitioner at my neurologist’s office recommended it.

What’s your Cefaly experience like?
It’s been awesome! I definitely wear it more than I’m probably supposed to. I find it can interrupt some headaches even if it doesn’t stop the headache completely. It dulls the pain enough or distracts me enough from the pain that I can go about whatever I need to do, which is a HUGE improvement to my quality life.

I am a photographer primarily and a lot of my work involves staring into a computer screen and that can screw with posture and your eyes. Before Cefaly, I would think: OK, I’m going to work myself into a migraine today but I have to do 8 hours of work, but now if I know I’m going to be sitting at computer for that long I just put the Cefaly on and sometimes I never get a migraine. It’s made that working long in the prison that is my computer far more possible and more enjoyable. I have maybe 3-4 fewer migraines a month (taking me down from 20 to 17 or 15 even) that’s awesome. Want to see some of Gail’s work? Click here.

What made you want to share your story?
I feel there are a lot of people who suffer from migraines and you don’t really hear about the non-pharmaceutical options that exist. I hated going to pain doctors all the time and feeling their only way of helping was putting more opioids into my system. I want people with migraines to know there are other things.

Want to share your story too? We’d love to hear from you! Please send an email to m DOT coder AT cefaly DOT us. Please include your name, contact information, and let us know where you’re located so we can set up a good time to talk.

If you’re wondering if Cefaly is right for you, click here for more information and, of course, check with your doctor.

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