New medication for migraines reduces the pain of headaches in difficult-to-treat cases Study finds

MINNEAPOLIS – MINNEAPOLIS A new medication could to prevent migraines for those suffering from difficult-to-treat conditions. Researchers from the American Academy of Neurology explain that while some individuals have the ability to manage their migraines using medications already in the market, people find these medications not effective. A new drug known as atogepant might be the solution.

The people who took atogepant discovered that they experienced more days of migraine each month. They also found that they didn’t need to take the drug more often than those who took a placebo to reduce migraine attacks.

“These results are very exciting, because migraine can be a debilitating condition and this treatment resulted to fewer migraine days for people who have tried four different types of medication to prevent migraine, but either experienced no improvements or had adverse effects that were more severe than the advantages,” says study author Patricia Pozo-Rosich MD PhD, of Vall d’Hebron University Hospital in an announcement to the media.

Atogepant can be described as a calcitonin gene-related antagonist of peptide receptors, also known as CGRP inhibitor. CGRP is an amino acid which plays an important role in triggering the migraine process. Migraines are typically an intense or moderate headache that is felt on one or both sides of your head. A person suffering from a migraine may be nauseated and more sensitive to sound or light.

“In 2018 the women were twice as likely to have experienced migraines or severe headaches during the last three months (20.1 percent opposed to 10.6 %),” according to an analysis of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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The medication reduces the time you suffer from headaches, but it also has negative side effects.

The research included 309 people with at most four migraine days over the month preceding the study. Each participant took at least two different classes of medication for migraine prevention but had no any improvement. Of these 44 percent of them, 44 percent had attended 3 or more courses of preventive medication but had no luck.

In the study, half of the participants consumed 60 milligrams atogepant twice daily in pill form. The other half received a placebo for 12 weeks. After taking the medication the participants experienced on average, four less days of migraine in a month, whereas those who were taking the placebo experienced just two days less.

While the results are encouraging however, the medication isn’t perfect, since it can cause number of adverse effects. One of the most commonly reported ones is constipation, which occurred in 10 percent people taking atogepant, and in three percent of those who took the placebo. Nausea was also a common occurrence and seven percent of people taking the drug experiencing sickness.

“People who believed they would not be able to stop and treat migraines could be hopeful of experiencing relief by using an acceptable oral drug that is simple to use,” Pozo-Rosich concludes. “This treatment is well-liked, safe and efficient for those suffering from difficult-to-treat migraines.”

Study authors are presenting their study at the annual American Academy of Neurology conference in Boston.

South West News Service writer Alice Clifford contributed to this report.