Not gonna right a real post today because my head is exploding with pain, as I will explain below. But I do kind of want to crowdsource response to this situation.
So, I get migraines. Nausea, sensitivity, and then shockingly painful throbbing headaches. Luckily there is an over the counter medication made by Company A which pretty much solves all my symptoms. Yesterday I started to get a really bad migraine, and I didn’t take pills right away because I can’t walk so I had to ask my parents to bring them to me and I hate asking for things and anyway, that meant that the headache got really REALLY bad and I need a second pill and then to lie on my back with my eyes closed for a while. And then a third pill 4-5 hours later.
Started to feel better by the evening but still not great, so I asked my Mom to leave the pill bottle by my bed when I went to sleep in case I needed more. Couldn’t sleep, ready to take a pill but couldn’t remember how long it had been since my last one and wanted to be sure I didn’t need to wait a few hours. Because, you know, even common over the counter stuff can cause organ damage if you take too much. Read the label and it said “only take 2 within 24 hours”. !!!!!
I had a moment of waiting for the sensation of my liver failing, and then though “wait, I am POSITIVE that I usually take 3 or 4 pills from Company A before the headache cycle is over, meaning well within 24 hours. Something is weird on this label.” Next day, we cleared out our cabinets and checked all the labels on our medicine from Company A. One bottle said “take no more than 8 in 24 hours”. The other said “take no more than 2”. Then we checked other pills from Company B and C and Store Brand with similar ingredients, adding up the risk factors, everything agreed with the “8” limit, not the “2”. So my Mom called Company A.
This is what she was told. The FDA has decided that if a migraine is not cured within 24 hours by two pills, you should call your doctor. Rather than telling you to call your doctor, they have told the pill companies they need to lie (essentially) on the bottles of things labeled “migraine” so that people will think they can only take two pills and therefore be forced to call their doctor. But if you sell the exact same pill in a bottle without the word “migraine” on it, you label it with the true risk factors.
Check this for yourself! Go to your medicine cabinet and see if you have two identical bottles but one is labeled “Migraine” and if the dosage warning is different. And also, if you have spent years wondering “why are there two versions of the same thing just with different labels?” this is why.
Obviously this is a very stupid policy for 3 reasons (at least):
a) Migraines TOTALLY last longer than 24 hours! Or more like, they surge in and out of existence for days at a go.
b) Putting a warning on the label is not going to make me go to a doctor or an emergency room for a freakin’ migraine, instead I am going to do what I did, stop taking pills because the label told me I should and tough it out in a dark room.
c) Literally the exact same pill from the exact same company, but not labeled “migraine” has no such restrictions. Are you saying anything that isn’t migraine pain, people can decide for themselves when to call a doctor and also can handle truthful warnings on the label?
Seeing as migraines are wildly more common in women then men, is this misogyny?
Or is it just lack of sympathy and understanding for how migraines work and general medical stupidity?
Also, does this mean I CAN take another pill now? Because my head is really starting to hurt again.