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.

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 August 29, 2014 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 August 29, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Friday, August 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Treadmill 'trips' May Reduce Falls for Elderly

Treadmill 'trips' May Reduce Falls for Elderly

AP (Aug. 28, 2014) Scientists are tripping the elderly on purpose in a Chicago lab in an effort to better prevent seniors from falling and injuring themselves in real life. (Aug.28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Alice in Wonderland Syndrome

Alice in Wonderland Syndrome

Ivanhoe (Aug. 27, 2014) It’s an unusual condition with a colorful name. Kids with “Alice in Wonderland” syndrome see sudden distortions in objects they’re looking at or their own bodies appear to change size, a lot like the main character in the Lewis Carroll story. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Stopping Schizophrenia Before Birth

Stopping Schizophrenia Before Birth

Ivanhoe (Aug. 27, 2014) Scientists have long called choline a “brain booster” essential for human development. Not only does it aid in memory and learning, researchers now believe choline could help prevent mental illness. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Personalized Brain Vaccine for Glioblastoma

Personalized Brain Vaccine for Glioblastoma

Ivanhoe (Aug. 27, 2014) Glioblastoma is the most common and aggressive brain cancer in humans. Now a new treatment using the patient’s own tumor could help slow down its progression and help patients live longer. Video provided by Ivanhoe
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:
from the past week

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