I’ve suffered from migraines since I was 17.
Let me tell you about my first migraine. I was babysitting my four cousins when I got this pounding, blinding pain in my head, unlike anything I’d ever experienced. I couldn’t see. Like, literally I could not see. I was certain I had a brain tumor. Or something. I tried to not freak out as I called my mother, dialing the phone merely by memory of where the buttons were. Luckily, this was before you had to dial the area code when you made a call.
Moments later, I was taken to my old-school, elderly pediatrician, who stuck a long cotton swab up my nose and did something. Precisely what, I’m not certain. I think — and I stress, think — he applied cocaine hydrochloride far up in my nasal cavity (it felt like he was rubbing it on my brain, but I digress…). It worked.
Whatever he did, it wasn’t something that he could do regularly, obviously. So, he wrote a prescription for migraine medication. I think the first one I took was Ergostat Sublingual. You put it under your tongue at the first sign of a migraine. Then, boom, taken off the market. Enter Midrin. Loved it. Worked wonders. Taken off the market. Tried Fioricet and Fiorinal. Not so great. Tried Imitrex. That worked briefly. There was nothing left. My insurance wouldn’t pay for anything else and, frankly, my doctor was pretty sure nothing else was going to work anyway. I had tried samples of other medications and they were useless.
So I tried…Excedrin Migraine. Excedrin Migraine was the first non-prescription medication that was approved by the FDA for migraine symptoms. It’s the over-the-counter medication that is most often recommended by neurologists. It’s the bee’s knees, man.
It was as though the clouds had parted and migraine relief had been granted. Finally. I stuck with Excedrin Migraine (not the generic forms, mind you)…and never looked back. And I would stock up. Sometimes there were Buy One Get One Free sales at the pharmacy…or they were in promotional packages with two bottles for the price of one…or I had coupons…whatever it was, I would stock up. Regularly. So much so, that when I took my last two Excedrin Migraine pills today and realized it was the very last of my Excedrin Migraine inventory, I knew I had to replenish my supply. And quick.
That’s when I was told that Excedrin Migraine was no longer available. Say what?!?! As in recalled. As in gone. Until further notice. The company that manufactures Excedrin products, Novartis Consumer Health, recalled all Excedrin products with expiration dates of December 12, 2014 and earlier. (They’ve also recalled No-Doz, Gas-X, and Bufferin products, but that’s not my problem right now.) According to reports, the January recall (have I been living under a rock?) was a precautionary measure due to potential product mix-ups.
You may have already heard about this, but I just learned about it today. Because I had that much Excedrin Migraine stocked in my cabinet. And now…none. Nada. Zero. Zilch. And there isn’t any to be found. Honest. I went out on a mission today and came up empty. But for those who paid attention to the news, oh, six months ago…are selling their Excedrin Migraine on eBay. (And people are buying it…at insane prices, mind you…because Excedrin Migraine is just that good.) For example…
I’m not sure you can see the prices too well but…they ain’t cheap. How about a 24-count box of Excedrin Migraine for $49.95? The description states that it isn’t part of the recall but, according to Novartis, all Excedrin products with expiration dates of December 2014 and earlier have been recalled. Yet folks are even selling coupons for Excedrin Migraine on eBay.
According to the Novartis website, they are “working to resume production.” What?!?! The recall took place in January! What is taking so long? What are we migraine sufferers supposed to do? I suppose — and this is a long shot — that we could try the generic brand of Excedrin Migraine (I don’t care what you say, the brand name has always been #1 in my book)…or, we could attempt to take the ingredients of Excedrin Migraine separately. That translates into 250 mg. of acetaminophen (generic Tylenol), 250 mg. of aspirin, and 65 mg. of caffeine per pill. I’m not sure that will work, though. No one is.
But, no one knows when we can get our hands on Excedrin Migraine, either.