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Butterbur

I know what you are thinking... sounds yummy. Butterbur. Sounds like a chocolate bar, doesn't it? But no it is a natural migraine remedy and one that there has been actual research on. It is to help prevent and reduce migraine headaches. Also apparently good for allergies, so that is a bonus for me. And asthma so even better. I have never tried this one. I hesitated to try many because of all the preventatives I was on... and at one time I was on quite the combos, sort of restricted my attempts to try any natural remedies at the same time. However, I got some Butterbur in my Christmas stocking this year and have decided to give it a go. I have tried Feverfew already and didn't have any luck with that on.

According to Migraine.com a 2004 study "found that Butterbur worked better at relieving migraines than an inactive placebo treatment. Here’s a breakdown of the patients in the four-month study. These migraine sufferers said their migraine attack frequency was reduced by" ...
  • 48% with Butterbur 75 mg
  • 36% with Butterbur 50 mg
  • 26% with Placebo 
 So that is pretty interesting. Most herbal remedies are not really looked into and the fact it is quite a bit better than placebo is pretty good results.

But it is important to not that all herbal remedies also have their own side effects as well. The potential ones according to Migraine.com that come with this one are:

  • Headaches
  • Drowsiness
  • Constipation
  • Upset stomach
  • Hair loss
  • Depression or neurological disorders
  • Skin or eye discoloration
  • Skin and allergic reactions
  • Fatigue
  • Difficulty breathing or exhaling
  • Itchy eyes
  • Halitosis, bad breath
  • Itching
  • Discolored stool
  • A condition called reversible cholestatic hepatitis, which means bile can’t flow properly from the liver because of swelling or blockage
  • A possible increase in liver enzymes

Finally I wanted to know specifically if I could not take this one with the calcium channel blocker or Topamax because some herbal remedies can conflict with other preventatives. So always good to be cautious and talk to your doctor before starting one. The contradictions noted by Migraine.com are:

If you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant or nursing, do not take Butterbur
If you are taking other agents that contain the same active ingredients as Butterbur, such as borage, gravel root and ragwort
If you have liver disease, congestive heart failure, are on blood thinners, barbiturates or blood sugar lowering medications
If you take any medications in the anticholinergics/antispasmodic class, which are used to relieve cramps or spasms in the stomach, intestines, and bladder
If you are allergic to any plants in the P. hybridus or Asteraceae/Compositae family
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