These are very anxious times, and that’s really not helpful if stress and anxiety is a migraine trigger for you.
The best advice we have for you is keep calm, and keep taking your medication. And stay at home!
There’s a lot of misinformation around on the internet and it’s hard to know what’s what. Fortunately our colleagues at The Migraine Trust and the American Migraine Foundation have developed handy guides to answer your questions about migraine and COVID-19.
The American Migraine Foundation page: https://americanmigrainefoundation.org/resource-library/covid-19-migraine/
Obviously there are some parts in these posts that are country specific. But, as a purely patient body, we are not doctors, and we cannot give you advice better than this.
The most important take away is that you are not more vulnerable to the virus because you have migraine – including people on the new CGRP medications – and if you need to see the doctor, try and do so virtually (what is being called ‘telehealth’ here).
One thing we can advise at this point is that many public hospital outpatient clinics in Australia will be closing to enable resources and staff to help with the response to COVID-19. If you get Botox for migraine, please contact your neurologist/headache clinic: most are making arrangements for people to be seen in private clinics – which are still open – or may be rescheduling appointments, or have different arrangements for you to come in to get your Botox.
If you need renewal scripts for your other medications, you should be able to get that via a telehealth appointment, and in most cases will be able to get your medications delivered to you at home. You will still need a neurologist to give you scripts for the Aimovig and Ajovy access schemes; either your neuro or your GP can provide you with scripts for Emgality and provide the discount voucher. More info about CGRP medications
Our pro-tip: try to avoid going to emergency!
One of the easiest ways to avoid a trip to the emergency department is to stick to a routine. If you would normally go to work, that may be a bit challenging, but you have plenty of friends in the Migraine Australia Chat Group who are experts at being housebound. Get up at the same time, have your meals at the same time, go for a walk at the same time, if you would normally have a coffee in the morning keep doing that. Routine helps keep the brain happy.
And if you do get a migraine attack take your triptan, or whatever you normally use to manage your attacks, fast. The earlier you treat an attack, the less likely it will get to the point that hospital is required.
If you think you need to go to hospital, call ahead. They may have changed the entry to emergency, or ask you to go somewhere else (such as a nearby hospital or a different part of the hospital). It may help during this time to have your local hospital’s number handy. You can also call Health Direct, 1800 022 222, or your GP for advice before going to Emergency. As always, if it is an emergency, particularly if you have a hemiplegic attack with significant stroke symptoms that are unusual for you, call 000 and have an ambulance take you.