Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Migraine treatments and side-effects reviewed

Date:
April 17, 2013
Source:
Springer Science+Business Media
Summary:
A new review finds little difference between effectiveness of drugs routinely prescribed for migraine prevention but evident difference in the side-effects experienced. Migraine headaches are a major cause of ill health and a reduced quality of life. Some individuals suffer from a frequent and severe migraine problem which means that they require regular medication to try and prevent them. A new review of the medications may help to prevent episodic migraines.

A new review finds little difference between effectiveness of drugs routinely prescribed for migraine prevention but evident difference in the side-effects experienced.

Related Articles


Migraine headaches are a major cause of ill health and a reduced quality of life. Some individuals suffer from a frequent and severe migraine problem which means that they require regular medication to try and prevent them. A new review of the medications, which may help to prevent episodic migraines, appears in the Journal of General Internal Medicine, published by Springer. The authors, Tatyana Shamliyan from the University of Minnesota School of Public Health, and her colleagues, compare published research on the drugs available to find those which offer the best migraine prevention coupled with the fewest adverse side-effects.

Preventive treatments for migraines aim to reduce the number of migraines suffered by fifty percent. There are a number of different drugs commonly used, all of which may cause some side effects. The researchers carried out a review of studies which tested how well the different types of drugs worked and also their acceptability in terms of adverse effects suffered. The studies used enrolled mostly middle aged women with episodic migraine who suffered an average of five monthly migraine attacks.

The authors found that all approved drugs used in the reviewed trials worked better than placebo in reducing monthly migraine attacks. They all demonstrated similar effects in that they prevented half or more migraines in 200 to 400 patients per 1000 treated. Off-label anti-epilpetics and anti-depressants appeared to cause the most bothersome side effects which usually resulted in the medication being stopped. Off-label beta-blockers and angiotensin-inhibiting drugs caused the fewest side-effects. (Off-label drugs are drugs which have not been approved by the Food and Drug Administration for a specific condition).

The American Academy of Neurology and the American Headache Society currently recommend two types of anti-epileptic drug and two beta-blockers for adult migraine prevention. These guidelines do not consider the balance between the effectiveness and harms of the drugs they recommend. As well as the increased occasion of immediate side effects with anti-epileptics, there is also evidence from other studies that with long-term use they can cause sexual problems such as impotence which would also deter long-term adherence..

Shamliyan and her colleagues suggest that future studies should examine the effects of the approved as well as the off-label drugs, taking into consideration patient demographics, family history of migraine, other illnesses and response to prior treatments. They also suggest that vigilance should be increased to monitor any adverse effects of current migraine-preventing drugs. Only once the necessary evidence is available, will migraine sufferers be given the best possible hope of a better quality of life with a preventive treatment that is more pro than con.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Springer Science+Business Media. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Tatyana A. Shamliyan, Jae-Young Choi, Rema Ramakrishnan, Jennifer Biggs Miller, Shi-Yi Wang, Frederick R. Taylor, Robert L. Kane. Preventive Pharmacologic Treatments for Episodic Migraine in Adults. Journal of General Internal Medicine, 2013; DOI: 10.1007/s11606-013-2433-1

Cite This Page:

Springer Science+Business Media. "Migraine treatments and side-effects reviewed." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 April 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130417114013.htm>.
Springer Science+Business Media. (2013, April 17). Migraine treatments and side-effects reviewed. ScienceDaily. Retrieved January 26, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130417114013.htm
Springer Science+Business Media. "Migraine treatments and side-effects reviewed." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130417114013.htm (accessed January 26, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Monday, January 26, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

How Technology Is Ruining Snow Days For Students

How Technology Is Ruining Snow Days For Students

Newsy (Jan. 25, 2015) — More schools are using online classes to keep from losing time to snow days, but it only works if students have Internet access at home. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Weird Things Couples Do When They Lose Their Phone

Weird Things Couples Do When They Lose Their Phone

BuzzFeed (Jan. 24, 2015) — Did you back it up? Do you even know how to do that? Video provided by BuzzFeed
Powered by NewsLook.com
Smart Wristband to Shock Away Bad Habits

Smart Wristband to Shock Away Bad Habits

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Jan. 23, 2015) — A Boston start-up is developing a wristband they say will help users break bad habits by jolting them with an electric shock. Ben Gruber reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Amazing Technology Allows Blind Mother to See Her Newborn Son

Amazing Technology Allows Blind Mother to See Her Newborn Son

RightThisMinute (Jan. 23, 2015) — Not only is Kathy seeing her newborn son for the first time, but this is actually the first time she has ever seen a baby. Kathy and her sister, Yvonne, have been legally blind since childhood, but thanks to an amazing new technology, eSight glasses, which gives those who are legally blind the ability to see, she got the chance to see the birth of her son. It&apos;s an incredible moment and an even better story. Video provided by RightThisMinute
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins