My Marinol Experience - no "trip" at all - positive experience

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My Marinol Experience - no "trip" at all - positive experience

Post  Hpfl4relf on Wed 22 Apr 2015, 10:44 am

Good Morning everyone,

Recently, I replied to a post indicating I had a Rx for Marinol. It took me 1-2 weeks to even fill the Rx simply due to my own reservations and the stigma attached to the use of this med. I did as much research as possible and chose to talk to my pharmacist about this med. I have always found pharmacists to be very "underutilized" resources with a wealth of knowledge and expertise to help anyone with questions about medications. Having worked in the medical field for many years, I have often considered myself to have much information about a lot of things but not an expert...So, I share this experience as a user and migrainer. Please know I'm not giving medical advice. That being said....my experience with Marinol has been more positive than anything else I have tried this far. I would have never asked for it but I would suggest anyone with a good relationship with their specialist/physician consider asking their physician about their opinion. Better yet, ask your pharmacist first. If you get a positive experience, perhaps he/she could make that recommendation.

I have been taking Marinol for about five weeks now. After the first week, my migraines were significantly decreased. I had two weeks with only a total of 4-5 migraines - that is a huge change from a migraine every day. I have NEVER felt high, not even slightly. I have NEVER had the "munchies". I have NEVER ACTUALLY FELT ANYTHING other than a significant decrease in my migraines. I have NOT gained a single pound from taking this med. Also, I have NEVER felt sleepy from taking it.

I Have noticed that my nausea is gone when I take it. So, unless the Marinol has worn off or if I already have a bad migraine, it definitely helps. One of the potential side effects noted is weight gain. Please note a lot of cancer patients take Marinol and if it combats nausea, then a likely benefit would be the ability to eat bc you don't feel sick.I started with taking 2.5 mg twice a day and increased by 2.5mg each week. I have SLOWLY increased dosage each week. I am now up to 3 (2.5mg each) tabs twice a day. Next week, I will increase by another 2.5 until I am up to 4 (2.5 mg each) tabs twice a day. UNLESS, my migraines are nonexistent.

For the negative aspects....I found nothing that indicated this med alters the brain. However, due to a pharmacy error, I was without my meds for 3-5 days. While I did not feel any withdrawal symptoms, migraines increased almost immediately. I felt so good I cut the grass and ended up with a horrible migraine. That happened again yesterday so...you still need to avoid your triggers, if possible. That could have been a mere coincidence. The pollen appears to be a huge trigger for me, as well as sleep (lack thereof), and barometric pressure changes. However, the pressure does not seem to affect me as badly while taking the Marinol.

The pharmacy filled a Rx and did not have enough to fill the entire Rx. They gave me a partial Rx and when I called about it, I was told they had to order it. Well, all scheduled meds require a new Rx be written even in the event of this similar situation. Also, I'm not sure how the documentation disappeared but when trying to get the rest, I'm told that I had enough for 22 days and my insurance would not approve a refill until a certain date. I had only a 6 day supply so I wasn't happy and immediately feared I would be labeled a drug seeker! LOL! What a mess this caused for me and my physician and the pharmacy. We did get it worked out and I was able to start back this week and will keep you posted. Please learn from my mistakes.

Always count your meds....preferably before you leave with an Rx or have your spouse, etc do the same. If there is a discrepancy, look for a note on the bottle or in your bag. (It was not noted on the bottle but my husband threw away the bag - thus throwing away the note. Let your pharmacist know as soon as possible when you notice a problem. I did do this and was told it was being taken care of....not sure that info was passed on to the next pharmacist. Always let your physician know as soon as possible, as well. I was able to contact my physician and let her know right away. She was very helpful and grateful bc she said she often gets calls for refills from pharmacies re scheduled meds right after they are filled and she usually just waits until time for the refill. So, this helped her to know why she was getting a request for a new prescription so soon. Also, I think the pharmacies seem to keep more 5/10 mg tablets in stock rather than the 2.5. However, my dr recommended we use this mg due to the ability to increase the dosage slowly.

Also, my pharmacist told me this med is a synthetic form of THC - it may have some pain relief properties but my understanding is that it doesn't have the same as marijuana. I asked him if he would recommend this for his wife or family member if he/she was a chronic migrainer. He said definitely. He also said there appears to be a relationship between the Marinol and its effect on serotonin in the brain. So, I will keep you posted on my progress. Interesting to note, as you know, THC stays in the body for quite some time and will show up in drug tests. So, be sure to tell your employer if you take this med. Also know, there is a test to differentiate between the synthetic THC and the actually THC found in marijuana. Personally, I like not having that high feeling and I also know that the last thing I want to do when I have a migraine is be near smoke of any kind. That doesn't mean I would never try it if nothing else seemed to work and it was legal in my state. I'm happy with the alternative for now. (:

For the past couple of years, the only relief that has worked for me has been chlorpromazine (yes, generic for Thorazine - and I threw away that written RX from my headache specialist 2-3x before I would fill it. Then, after the first time I got it, I flushed it bc of all the things I had read online about it.) It wasn't until I talked to my pharmacist that I agreed to try it. I can only take it up to three days a week. I will only take this at night bc it basically puts you to sleep. You also have that drugged feeling the next day. While that is better than the migraine, it hasn't been a med I have relished having to take. I still have that Rx and did have to resort to taking it last night bc the migraine was so bad. Since taking Marinol, I have had much fewer days of needing to use that med.

I know this was a long post. However, I wanted to be able to answer some of the questions I had and really wanted to inform the community of something that has been beneficial thus far. Hope it helps!
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Re: My Marinol Experience - no "trip" at all - positive experience

Post  tortoisegirl on Wed 22 Apr 2015, 8:34 pm

Thanks for sharing! So glad it has been helpful for you, and I hope it continues. So I'm curious--did you ask your doctor about this, or did they bring it up? I have always been curious to try it, but have been on long acting opiates, and they usually don't allow both.

Agreed about pharmacists being underutilized, plus they typically know much more about the med being prescribed than the doctor who prescribes it! Best wishes.

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Re: My Marinol Experience - no "trip" at all - positive experience

Post  7777Trinity on Thu 23 Apr 2015, 4:07 pm

I had heard that Marinol might help with migraine but could never find a physician who would prescribe it. I am so happy to hear your are doing so well on it!!!
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tortoisegirl and 7777Trinity: in response to Marinol post

Post  Hpfl4relf on Sat 25 Apr 2015, 8:06 am

Thank you both for your encouragement. To answer the question about how the topic came up and whether I asked for the Rx.....I told my doctor that I needed to do something different as my migraines were not getting any better and in fact, were worse and I was getting so frustrated - even to the point of getting depressed at times because they were in control of my seemingly limited life (unless you can count living as a vampire who doesn't even come out at night!) I told her that I had a family member and a few other people tell me I should consider smoking marijuana! I told her I didn't really want to do that and would most certainly be the one to get arrested the first time I tried it in a state where it's illegal. I have always steered clear of pain meds except on very rare occasions (I have of taken a pain med "once"in the last year and a half) bc of the potential rebound effects as well as the other affects pain meds have on the body. In fact, the med I had been taking for over a year could not be taken with alcohol or opiates as it was an "opiate antagonist receptor" med. (In essence, I would be very very sick if I combined it with alcohol or opiates. Even dental visits had to be well planned and I had to stop taking that medication for at least a week.) Anyway, my doctor is the one who told me that there is a medication that I could try that has been beneficial to patients with chronic pain. I was surprised when she told me it was synthetic THC. If you are already taking opiates on ka regular basis, perhaps you could ask your physician/specialist if you could try an alternative such as Marinol. I don't know how the meds you are taking affect you. I do remember the times when I did take pain meds, particularly opiates, the feeling was very different from Marinol. Not everyone has the same experiences with Marinol but I can tell you I have never felt as if I have taken a pain pill of any kind. If this med continues to help (trying to work through the pollen issues right now), I may ask about the extended release tabs. As I mentioned, Marinol has not been a cure and doesn't seem to help if I already have a bad migraine. That could be due to any number of reasons. However, it has helped. I also have to still avoid triggers. Strenuous exercise, bright lights, lack of sleep, pollen, etc. I will tell you that it may help more than I know. There have been a few times that I have suddenly felt nauseated. I look at the time and realize it is past time to take my second dose. The relief of nausea has been wonderful. I used to live on Phenergan. In fact, I have never been able to take a pain pill with codeine unless I took it with Phenergan. There is no need for Phenergan while taking Marinol. It also doesn't cause the constipation or any of the other negative effects of pain meds. So, essentially, you can take Marinol and still perform your normal activities (once you are sure of how it affects you). Reports indicate some people have reported a "high" feeling the first few days to week or so of taking it. As I said, I never felt high. I used to love to play tennis and was just learning a few years ago. When the migraines became chronic, I had to give it up. Yesterday, I played a match that lasted from 9:30 - 12:00pm. I was migraine free until just before 3pm. Was it the heat? No, it was actually chilly here. Was it the exercise? Maybe but I doubt it bc I was playing doubles so it's not quite as strenuous as singles. Honestly, I think it was the pollen and maybe the sun in my direct path when serving. I started taking Zyrtec a few days ago and was told by my pharmacist that I could also try the over counter Flonase with the Zyrtec to see if it helps. I know it takes awhile to see if new meds are truly going to work....often docs want you to try them for at least 2-3 months. So, I will definitely keep you posted! Oh, one more thing....the other option could be seeing a pain specialist. My physician told me that when her patients don't respond well to treatments for pain, she will refer them to a pain specialist......with the understanding that if that patient abuses the use of their pain meds, she will discontinue seeing them as a physician. Sounds fair to me...however, in my case....if this doesn't work, I will probably consider searching for a headache specialist again. I've seen two "headache specialists" and their lack of compassion and understanding as well as their refusal to allow me to be an active part of treatment plan didn't work well. I may be the patient but I am ultimately the customer paying a very high price for their services. I have worked with physicians and specialists most of my adult life....I will take a compassionate and smart physician over a pompous genius any day. I think I would also look for a physician who has actually had migraines and knows how debilitating they can be. Just because someone looks good on the outside doesn't mean they are not suffering on the outside.
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Re: My Marinol Experience - no "trip" at all - positive experience

Post  milo on Fri 08 May 2015, 8:37 pm

Thanks for posting. I may have to talk to my specialist.
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Re: My Marinol Experience - no "trip" at all - positive experience

Post  Migrainegirl on Sat 09 May 2015, 9:39 pm

Hpfl4ref. --- can you please break up your long posts into smaller paragraphs?  Many of us cannot read through long postings as our poor brains are so taxed.  Thanks so much!
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