Angelie lived with migraine headaches for decades, experiencing 2-3 episodes per month that could last for several days. Physical side effects included nausea and visual disturbances, all of which caused Angelie to retreat from the life she loved, declining social invitations and professional opportunities in anticipation of yet another migraine.
She tried everything for treatment. Heavy doses of pain medication first. Then acupuncture, acupressure, diet modification, steroid and Botox injections, biofeedback, and massage therapy. Many of those treatments provided short-term relief, but Angelie struggled to find the kind of lasting results, free of problematic side effects, that would allow her to regain control of her life.
It wasn't until a neurologist referred Angelie to physical therapist Claire Melebeck, PT, DPT, for trigger point therapy that Angelie escaped the cycle of migraine episodes that had plagued her for 30 years.
"I had immediate results with relief," Angelie said. Headache episodes were shorter, and, more important, they were less frequent. Soon Angelie counted up to 12 consecutive pain-free days—a personal breakthrough. "I could not remember having that many pain-free days in a row since 1974," she said.
Her physical therapist wasn't surprised. Claire had long used trigger-point therapy to treat orthopedic conditions like shoulder impingement, patellofemoral pain, and iliotibial band syndrome, and she was confident the treatment could be effective in treating the effects of migraine headaches, too.
"I was getting patients better faster and more efficiently," Claire said. "It was not 2 or 3 visits before they would feel a difference. It was 10 minutes of this treatment, and they would stand up and say, 'Wow, that's different!'"
Thanks to trigger point therapy, today Angelie's life is much different than before. She's working again, and she's back to making plans with friends and family.
"It makes me feel like I'm truly living my life again, instead of sitting in my room sick," Angelie said.
Listen to Angelie share her story about treating her migraine headaches with trigger point therapy on Move Forward Radio.
Read more about headaches.
Physical therapists are movement experts who improve quality of life through hands-on care, patient education, and prescribed movement. You can contact a physical therapist directly for an evaluation. To locate a physical therapist in your area, visit Find a PT.
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