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      Acute migraine: Current treatment and emerging therapies

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      Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management

      Dove Medical Press

      migraine, pathophysiology, acute, treatment

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          Abstract

          Migraine is a common disabling primary headache disorder. Despite the need for a perfect treatment of this debilitating condition, the ideal “cure” eludes us. In 1992, the first triptan was released in the US for use in acute migraine. Triptans are more specific for the serotonin receptor 5-hydroxy triptamine (5-HT) 1 than previously prescribed drugs, such as ergotamines, with fewer side effects. This was an important first step in specific acute migraine therapy. Today however, triptans continue to be underutilized. There remains a concern, among practitioners and patients, about possible cardiovascular safety issues, despite the lack of strong evidence of serious adverse events. In fact, triptans now have a safe track record over more than a decade of use. Other perceived downfalls to use, include cost and variable efficacy. The more we learn about the clinical features and pathophysiology of migraine, the closer we are to finding a satisfactory monotherapy. Until then, recognizing that mixed mechanisms underlie migraine symptoms, rational polytherapy can be useful. Research on the roles of serotonin, calcitonin gene related peptide, glutamine and N-methyl-D-aspartate in the trigeminovascular system holds promise for those searching for the perfect migraine headache cure.

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          Most cited references 93

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          Prevalence and burden of migraine in the United States: data from the American Migraine Study II.

          To describe the prevalence, sociodemographic profile, and the burden of migraine in the United States in 1999 and to compare results with the original American Migraine Study, a 1989 population-based study employing identical methods. A validated, self-administered questionnaire was mailed to a sample of 20 000 households in the United States. Each household member with severe headache was asked to respond to questions about symptoms, frequency, and severity of headaches and about headache-related disability. Diagnostic criteria for migraine were based on those of the International Headache Society. This report is restricted to individuals 12 years and older. Of the 43 527 age-eligible individuals, 29 727 responded to the questionnaire for a 68.3% response rate. The prevalence of migraine was 18.2% among females and 6.5% among males. Approximately 23% of households contained at least one member suffering from migraine. Migraine prevalence was higher in whites than in blacks and was inversely related to household income. Prevalence increased from aged 12 years to about aged 40 years and declined thereafter in both sexes. Fifty-three percent of respondents reported that their severe headaches caused substantial impairment in activities or required bed rest. Approximately 31% missed at least 1 day of work or school in the previous 3 months because of migraine; 51% reported that work or school productivity was reduced by at least 50%. Two methodologically identical national surveys in the United States conducted 10 years apart show that the prevalence and distribution of migraine have remained stable over the last decade. Migraine-associated disability remains substantial and pervasive. The number of migraineurs has increased from 23.6 million in 1989 to 27.9 million in 1999 commensurate with the growth of the population. Migraine is an important target for public health interventions because it is highly prevalent and disabling.
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            An association between migraine and cutaneous allodynia.

            Recent animal studies on the mechanism of migraine show that intracranial pain is accompanied by increased periorbital skin sensitivity. These findings suggest that the pathophysiology of migraine involves not only irritation of meningeal perivascular pain fibers but also a transient increase in the responsiveness (ie, sensitization) of central pain neurons that process information arising from intracranial structures and skin. The purpose of this study was to determine whether the increased skin sensitivity observed in animal also develops in humans during migraine attacks. Repeated measurements of mechanical and thermal pain thresholds of periorbital and forearm skin areas in the absence of, and during, migraine attacks enabled us to determine the occurrence of cutaneous allodynia during migraine. Cutaneous allodynia is pain resulting from a nonnoxious stimulus to normal skin. In 79% of the patients, migraine was associated with cutaneous allodynia as defined, and in 21% of the patients it was not. The cutaneous allodynia occurred either solely within the referred pain area on the ipsilateral head, or within and outside the ipsilateral head. Cutaneous allodynia in certain well-defined regions of the skin during migraine is an as yet unreported neurological finding that points to hyperexcitability of a specific central pain pathway that subserves intracranial sensation.
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              Oral triptans (serotonin 5-HT(1B/1D) agonists) in acute migraine treatment: a meta-analysis of 53 trials.

              The triptans, selective serotonin 5-HT(1B/1D) agonists, are very effective acute migraine drugs with a well- developed scientific rationale. Seven different triptans will soon be clinically available, making evidence-based selection guidelines necessary. Triptan trials have similar designs, facilitating meta-analysis; this will provide a foundation for using triptans in clinical practice. We asked pharmaceutical companies and the principal investigators of company-independent trials for raw patient data of all double-blind, randomised, controlled, clinical trials of oral triptans in migraine. We calculated summary estimates across studies for important efficacy and tolerability parameters, and separately summarised direct comparator trials. 53 clinical trials (12 unpublished) involving 24089 patients, met the criteria for inclusion. Mean results for 100 mg sumatriptan were 59% (95% CI 57-60) for 2 h headache response (improvement from moderate or severe to mild or no pain); 29% (27-30) for 2 h pain free (improvement to no pain); 20% (18-21) for sustained pain free (pain free by 2 h and no headache recurrence or use of rescue medication 2-24 h post dose); and 67% (63-70) for consistency (response in at least two of three treated attacks); placebo-subtracted proportions for patients with at least one adverse event (AE) were 13% (8-18), for at least one central nervous system AE 6% (3-9), and for at least one chest AE 1.9% (1.0-2.7). Compared with these data, 10 mg rizatriptan showed better efficacy and consistency, and similar tolerability; 80 mg eletriptan showed better efficacy, similar consistency, but lower tolerability; 12.5 mg almotriptan showed similar efficacy at 2 h but better other results; 2.5 mg naratriptan and 20 mg eletriptan showed lower efficacy and (the first two) better tolerability; 2.5 mg and 5 mg zolmitriptan, 40 mg eletriptan, and 5 mg rizatriptan showed very similar results. The results of the 22 trials that directly compared triptans show the same overall pattern. We received no data on frovatriptan, but publicly available data suggest lower efficacy. At marketed doses, all oral triptans were effective and well tolerated. 10 mg rizatriptan, 80 mg eletriptan, and 12.5 mg almotriptan provide the highest likelihood of consistent success.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Ther Clin Risk Manag
                Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management
                Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management
                Dove Medical Press
                1176-6336
                1178-203X
                June 2007
                June 2007
                : 3
                : 3
                : 449-459
                Affiliations
                Department of Neurology, LSU Health Sciences Center Shreveport, LA, USA
                Author notes
                Correspondence: Arun A Kalra LSU Health Sciences Center, Department of Neurology, 1501 King’s Highway, PO Box 33932, Shreveport, LA 71130-3932, USA Tel +1 318 675 8195/6203 Fax +1 318 675 7805 Email akalra@ 123456lsuhsc.edu
                Article
                2386351
                18488069
                © 2007 Dove Medical Press Limited. All rights reserved
                Categories
                Review

                Medicine

                treatment, migraine, pathophysiology, acute

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