National Migraine Centre
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Hello Angelhope71

For me Amitriptyline is great reducing my migraines from more than 10 days a month to usually under 3 days a month!

After visiting the NMC I was prescribed Amitriptyline starting on a low dose and then increasing to 35mg for 2-3 weeks, then 40mg for 2-3 weeks and was told that if I had no increased side effects with that dose to increase again to 50mg, which is the dose I am on and have been for 2 years. The NMC also said that in some cases it may be necessary to increase up to 75mg if only partial benefit is achieved with lower doses.

I am therefore puzzled as to why your GP has told you that you cannot have a higher dose than 35mg and wanted to let you know my experience and treatment at the NMC.

9 Replies

I have been on it and struggled to function the next morning. Do you take it at night? I felt like I'd been hit by a truck and it wasn't safe to drive my kids to school, so had to come off it 😔 It did help if I remember rightly, but it was years ago.

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Yes I take 50 mg at night, 3 hours before I go to bed was the recommendation to me from the NMC. I do sleep well but no after effects now.

I think you have to weigh up sometimes whether any side effects you get are worse or not as bad as an actual migraine!

Good luck!


Thank you x


Thinking of trying this but don't usually respond well to medication and side effects. Do you have any side effects, Penny? I also have a concern about what happens in the event of a stomach upset or other illness which would mean the tablet wouldn't be absorbed. I understand you're not meant to come off it suddenly, but something like norovirus would mean there wasn't any of the medication getting into your system for several days.


Hi. At first when taking Amitripyline I had a dry mouth and felt a bit sleepy in the morning but if you increase the dose really slowly and if some side effects, stop increasing until they go and your body gets use to that dose that may help. Ask yourself are any side effects worse than an actual migraine?

I take 50 mg at night and it's changed my life for the better. If I forget to take one at night or like you ask if you were sick and couldn't take one I don't find I immediately get a migraine. Although you should always reduce the dose gradually if you want to stop taking them for any reason.

If all else has failed maybe give it a go!


Thanks, yes, I may give it a go. Not much could be worse than the actual migraine, I agree, apart from having side effects from medication AND having the migraine - which I've experienced before - but I currently have a few days per week when I feel quite alert and able to function and wouldn't like to lose that either. Useful to hear a positive experience.


I was on 50mg for 9 months.. Yes it helped the migrains for 6 months but I was like someone with dementia. My memory was terrible. My partner said to me " one of these days your going to go out and forget how to get home" seriously I was that bad. So when the pain started to come through again after the six months I stopped taking it.


I'm glad you have had such a positive response with this preventative. Unfortunately it didn't work for me , the same as any preventative I have tried. I am now trying candesartan 8 mg but no difference so far. I have to give it a bit longer to really tell.


Sorry for the delay in replying Penny 15 . . I have just spent 3 days with an on and off bad head ,followed by 4 days in bed in hurrendous pain with migraine. Thank you for letting me know about the amitriptyline guidelines at the NMC. I have written to my g.p. today with the recommendation of this as I did have such a good result initially 4 years ago with it. I am currently on a waiting list for botox which has been a nightmare. I can't get in touch with The migraine Clinic in Oxfordshire as they only deal with medical personnel! ,I was refered in March !,. . When does the nightmare ever end? After 39 years of migraine I am totally fed up with it all ( like sooo many of us on here) . But thank you again for letting me know!

Love and hugs


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