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Oxymetazoline as an abortive medication for cluster headaches??


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Hi everyone I have had cluster headaches for more than a decade.  And for all of this time I have been searching for new drugs to abort my cluster headaches.

 The drug has to meet certain criteria, it needs to be fast acting, discrete, cheap, easily available and constrict blood vessels ideally by acting as an agonist to the same serotonin receptor types as sumatriptan (5-HT1B and 5-HT1D).

So, after years of searching I have come up with Oxymetazoline, an over the  counter decongestant nasal spray.

This drug meets all of the above criteria.
Importantly it works as a full and potent agonist of type 5-HT1B and 5-HT1D receptors. 

 I have been testing on myself for the last 3 years with good results.

I abort at least 7/10 attacks with oxymetazoline alone.

When oxymetazoline fails I use oxygen and it quickly finishes the attack off.

For me, the combination of oxymetazoline and oxygen has proven itself to be a near unstoppable way of dealing with the beast (far more effective than oxygen alone).


I would like to  mention that rebound congestion is an issue that I have raised with my GP and have been prescribed a weak steroid nasal spray to combat this.

I have not used sumatriptan except when abroad for more than a year.

Since I have substituted sumatriptan for oxymetazoline I have had no drop in frequency of attacks and nasal congestion will almost always progresses to a cluster headache if not treated so I can't rule out rebound headaches as a possibility.


I have had phenomenal success with my current strategy of viewing congestion (rebound or otherwise) as an early warning sign of an attack and treating with oxymetazoline.

This will sound disgusting but this is how I use oxymetazoline.

At the first sign of an attack (congestion) I administer two metered spray doses to each nostril.

As soon as my airways open up I can always pull an extreme amount of mucus from my nose and sinuses into my throat I spit this out if I can but have to swallow if not. 

Every time I pull some mucus back it's like the pressure and pain decreases slightly. 

I keep breathing and pulling mucus away from my sinuses until the attack stops.

Because of the current success I have been having with oxymetazoline and pulling mucus, my personal leading theory is as follows:

Often humans over complicate things and more often than not the answer is simple.


I believe Cerebral blood vessels dilate causing a pressure pocket inside the sinus cavity, this then fills up with air and mucus inflating inside the head like a balloon, this gets so big that it starts to put pressure on nerve bundles thus causing the severe pain associated with the condition. (Just a laugh, dont destroy me lol)

Just to clarify to everyone this post is not a recommendation to try any drug before speaking to a medical professional.

I have not read about this anywhere else and I am interested to see if anyone else has been down this rabbit hole.

If not, I hope this helps someone.

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