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Still trying to solve headache issues with Pramiracetam

pramiracetam headache headaches

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#1 Focalpoint

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Posted 04 June 2012 - 03:40 AM


I am a beginner here. Started taking pramiracetam, after having some limited experience with piracetam previously.

What I am finding is that it has been very, very difficult (actually, impossible so far) to find a balance of pramiracetam and choline that doesn't either give me a bad tension headache or a sore stiff neck. I have read that headaches are from choline deficiency and stiff necks are from too much choline. Well, there must be an extremely fine line between too little and too much, at least for my body, because sometimes I even get both BOTH a headache and a stiff neck. Then I don't know what to do to fix it other than just abstain completely and wait for it all to go away.

I started out taking a 1:1 ratio of pram to CDP choline, 600mg at first. That was too much pramiracetam, so I've gradually lowered it to see what would be best for me. I've found that even in the 100 - 150mg range, pram still gives me a headache. I'm usually fine until afternoon, then it starts coming on and lasts the rest of the day. Trying to beat it down by taking lecithin (and again I've experimented with the amount of lecithin too, to no avail) doesn't seem to help.

I just can't seem to find a good balance that will give me the benefits of pramiracetam without these bad side effects (and there ARE benefits -- great mental focus, clearer thinking and a kind of "effortlessness" to the daily work, even if it is highly technical). Just can't figure out a good ratio that will work for me.

So if anyone else is taking pramiracetam (and preferably not as part of a ton of other things in a complex noot stack, because that will just add variables and confuse the issue), but if you're taking pram exclusively or near-exclusively, I'd like to hear what you do as far as choline supplementation to mitigate the potential negative side effects. What is the daily regimen? I've looked through threads here and didn't really find posts that reference exactly that. I know that pram is relatively new and there's not a lot of research or maybe even user experiences out there yet, but any such info you can give would be helpful. It's getting frustrating, as I really do see the positive benefits here but if it means putting up with the kind of headaches I've had nearly every time I use it, and occasional stiff neck to boot, then I think I will have to quit.
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#2 health_nutty

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Posted 04 June 2012 - 03:43 AM

Have you tried Pram without any choline?

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#3 Heraclitean

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Posted 04 June 2012 - 08:39 AM

I am a beginner here. Started taking pramiracetam, after having some limited experience with piracetam previously.

What I am finding is that it has been very, very difficult (actually, impossible so far) to find a balance of pramiracetam and choline that doesn't either give me a bad tension headache or a sore stiff neck. I have read that headaches are from choline deficiency and stiff necks are from too much choline. Well, there must be an extremely fine line between too little and too much, at least for my body, because sometimes I even get both BOTH a headache and a stiff neck. Then I don't know what to do to fix it other than just abstain completely and wait for it all to go away.

I started out taking a 1:1 ratio of pram to CDP choline, 600mg at first. That was too much pramiracetam, so I've gradually lowered it to see what would be best for me. I've found that even in the 100 - 150mg range, pram still gives me a headache. I'm usually fine until afternoon, then it starts coming on and lasts the rest of the day. Trying to beat it down by taking lecithin (and again I've experimented with the amount of lecithin too, to no avail) doesn't seem to help.

I just can't seem to find a good balance that will give me the benefits of pramiracetam without these bad side effects (and there ARE benefits -- great mental focus, clearer thinking and a kind of "effortlessness" to the daily work, even if it is highly technical). Just can't figure out a good ratio that will work for me.

So if anyone else is taking pramiracetam (and preferably not as part of a ton of other things in a complex noot stack, because that will just add variables and confuse the issue), but if you're taking pram exclusively or near-exclusively, I'd like to hear what you do as far as choline supplementation to mitigate the potential negative side effects. What is the daily regimen? I've looked through threads here and didn't really find posts that reference exactly that. I know that pram is relatively new and there's not a lot of research or maybe even user experiences out there yet, but any such info you can give would be helpful. It's getting frustrating, as I really do see the positive benefits here but if it means putting up with the kind of headaches I've had nearly every time I use it, and occasional stiff neck to boot, then I think I will have to quit.



As suggested by Health_Nutty, try it without Choline. As a matter of fact I don't think people should jump right into supplementing -racetams with Choline, it should only be done if and when "choline headaches" or "brain fog" or other signs of Choline depletion manifest. However, if you are having trouble while taking both... then suspend Choline for the time being and continue with Prami-.

Also, I would suggest "working through" the headache (Assuming its not a migraine or something too debilitating), because in my experience once you get used to the -racetam in question, the headache disappears. This may ring a bell with the alarmists who like to encourage people to STOP at the first sign of any discomfort, but I would not heed their advice when a racetam is in question because of its safety profile. In this case its up to your own willpower and desire for improvement, Prami won't causeany real side effects at rational dosages.

In steps:

1) Suspend Choline ASAP.
2) Reduce Prami dosage to bare minimum (100 mg b.i.d.)
3) Move up from there until you hit your sweet spot.
4) Give the headache thing another 2 weeks. If there is still no abating, then perhaps its time to look for another noot.


Good luck, and be bold.
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#4 Focalpoint

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Posted 04 June 2012 - 11:25 PM

Thanks a lot for the input, guys.

So I tried 100mg Pram in the morning and at lunch today, without taking any choline. So far, so good. It's about 5:30 PM and no headache so far, just a little bit of a stimulated "pressure" feeling that's interesting but not really unpleasant. I must be a soft head when it comes to this stuff, as I'm finding so far that lower doses are better. We'll see how this progresses.

Thanks.
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#5 health_nutty

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Posted 04 June 2012 - 11:32 PM

I've found that I need a lot of choline with Aniracetam, but very little with Pram.
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#6 Heraclitean

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Posted 05 June 2012 - 01:36 AM

Thanks a lot for the input, guys.

So I tried 100mg Pram in the morning and at lunch today, without taking any choline. So far, so good. It's about 5:30 PM and no headache so far, just a little bit of a stimulated "pressure" feeling that's interesting but not really unpleasant. I must be a soft head when it comes to this stuff, as I'm finding so far that lower doses are better. We'll see how this progresses.

Thanks.


Glad you're feeling better, and I agree: low doses of Pram are better, because it IS powerful and there is an inverted U-shape response curve with it, where the vertex of the parabola is actually at a figure much closer to the origin than other -racetams.
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#7 Focalpoint

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Posted 06 June 2012 - 02:26 AM

Update: Well, I'm finding that, curiously by the end of the day (when I would expect the Pram to be wearing off), I start getting a dull headache usually accompanied by a mild type of "pressure" feeling that is hard to explain. The location of it varies. Tonight it is mainly around my left temple. Yesterday it was in the back of my head. Weird.

The rest of the day, I do feel kind of a "stimulation" effect physically but otherwise I'm totally fine and feel like I am more focused and able to "keep going" on tasks that would normally drain me both mentally and physically. Is this stuff making me "smarter"? -- Meh, I don't think so, at least not yet. But what it does do is allow me to focus, to absorb data more easily, and to go about the day with more of a kind of ease and less stress. I am finding that 100-150mg seems to be quite enough for me on a daily basis, so far. Fine with me; it means that this expensive stuff will last longer!

I do have some aniracetam too -- I was just intrigued by the "creative" angle of it, as I mainly like to do "right-brained" stuff as hobbies (while mostly analytic left-brained stuff at work). But I haven't really taken it other than a few really low doses, for fear of headaches. I do find that the two or three times I used my Ani, it seemed to give me headaches more readily than with Pram. That seems to correlate with health_nutty's post above, so I guess my next task is figuring out the best ani - to - choline ratio for me (a la my previous, first thread here).

Cheers.
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#8 Focalpoint

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Posted 03 July 2012 - 01:23 AM

After some experimentation, I seem to have found a balance that gives me no side effects whatsoever! No headaches or pressure feeling.

250 mg Aniracetam
250 - 300 mg Pramiracetam
500 mg ALCAR

I first started out with just 100-120 mg each of racetams and 250 mg ALCAR. Then gradually doubled it to see if the ratio still holds. It seems to, for me at least.

For whatever reason, cutting choline completely out of the equation and substituting ALCAR instead, at a 1:1 ratio of it to the racetams, seems to have done the trick. I don't know why this works, but after a week or so, it seems to have alleviated all of the side effects I was having when taking choline with the racetams. The headaches were the most annoying, but since starting this routine I haven't experienced any.

The aniracetam is most interesting. I find myself recalling childhood events with more clarity. Music seems more "defined" and more enjoyable -- I pick up nuances easier. It's a subtle effect but it is there. Also, for some reason, emotion and especially compassion seem to increase a bit. Things seem to affect me more, or maybe I am just more open to true feelings instead of trying to suppress them as a lot of guys even unconsciously do by force of habit. I teared up a bit at a tearjerker movie the other night. I wonder if I would have done that otherwise. Anyway, I find this beneficial -- the "macho" impulses lessen and the more natural HUMAN impulses rise up. It's a very subtle effect. But it's there.

With the pram, meanwhile, I don't feel like I'm any "smarter" yet. But I do feel like my alertness, drive and focus are increased. I feel every bit as normal as I would be without the pram -- but just a bit more focused and able to work on mentally challenging things for longer without getting burnt out.

It has been interesting so far.
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#9 golden1

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Posted 03 July 2012 - 01:48 AM

Thats interesting, you describe that aspect of aniracetam really well. I get all of those effects, I take 1g+ usually though hahah ( I guess I should try 250mg, however I feel like I'm probably used to the subjective feel of higher doses of aniracetam, since the higher I dose the more magical and drug-like-psychedelic feeling it becomes..I've done up to ~20g at once hahah )
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#10 Focalpoint

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Posted 04 July 2012 - 03:25 PM

So what ratio of racetam to choline (or ALCAR or whatever) do you take when you take such massive doses?! How do you avoid getting a headache to end all headaches?
Also, doesn't the law of diminishing returns kick in fairly quickly with this stuff -- and even become something of a "negative" return at such a massive dose?
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#11 Geoffrey

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Posted 04 July 2012 - 04:05 PM

I'm very sensitive to the -racetams and can only tolerate micro-doses (<100mg). Both pramiracetam and aniracetam I find to be particularly potent. One curious side effect of taking "too much" (for me), is that my eardrums seem to swell up (as if inflamed, although there is no infection) and sounds, especially deep ones, start to "boom" in an unpleasant way. This has happened to me consistently with doses of >100mg (or sometimes less) and can take up to two days of racetam-abstinence to go away. I speculate this is related to increased blood-flow and pooling/engorging. The feeling of "pressure" in the head might be related. Has anyone else had symptoms at all like this? NB I've *never* experienced such symptoms in the absence of -racetams except when I've had an obvious ear infection needing medical treatment (and causing pain). This is not so severe and there is no pain, but it is disorientating.
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#12 nakana

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 10:20 PM

Interesting that you should bring up your eardrums...I had been taking very small doses (<50mg) on and off with and without choline. I noticed that I was much more susceptible to tinnitus. Also I seemed to get sick after a few days taking it, as though I wasn't getting normal restorative sleep.

I took a break from prami for a while, but I'm giving it another shot. I bumped up to a bit larger dose, ~150mg. After 3 days, I took a break today. I hadn't gotten pronounced tinnitus or become sick, but instead I got a crushing headache this morning. I had been taking ~1g of choline with each dose, so I'm going to try cutting out choline to see what happens. My hypothesis before I read this thread was that since part of prami's proposed method of action is to dilate blood vessels, the consequent restricting of blood vessels causes pressure, and pain, to increase temporarily while a new equilibrium emerges. I suppose this is why twice daily doses are recommended, though I hadn't seen that recommendation anywhere but from Heraclitean above.

I'm just going to forge ahead since I have a fair bit of powder left. I'm going to try twice daily with no choline to see if anything changes to make me think that prami is sustainable for more than 1 week at a time.
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#13 manny

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 05:00 AM

A lot of people have found l-glutamine the missing ingredient for piracetam.

Here is a post in another thread about a glutamine experience:

I can verify that for the first time in 2 years, my brain feels normal again. I bombarded my brain with piracetam without glutamine supplementation, and now with glutamine supplementation alone, well, try for yourself Posted Image

I do however still take a stack of nootropics, but without my L-Glutamine levels being replenished, it was incomplete. For two years I suffered from pointless anxiety and lethargy, not to mention depression and brain fog. This whole fear of glutamate damage had me irrational. I have been taking theanine, huperzine a, magnesium taurate, piracetam, Bacopa, ashwagandha, adderall, you name it, I have tried it. The arsenal was simply incomplete. I have been meditating for years with no benefits. I sat down for the first time last night (only 3 hours of taking 7,000mg of L-Glutamine) and it was effortless pranayama.


Thread link: http://www.longecity...upplementation/

Edited by manny, 22 December 2012 - 05:00 AM.

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#14 FocusPocus

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Posted 10 November 2013 - 12:37 PM

Having Prami headaches too despite sorting the choline ratios. Hope ALCAR helps like the OP posted. trying it soon.

Any other ideas?
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