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Eletriptan for the treatment of migraine in patients with previous poor response or tolerance to oral sumatriptan.

Author(s): Farkkila M, Olesen J, Dahlof C, Stovner LJ, ter Bruggen JP, Rasmussen S, Muirhead N, Sikes C

Affiliation(s): Helsinki Headache Centre, Helsinki, Finland. markus.farkkila@fimnet.fi

Publication date & source: 2003-07, Cephalalgia., 23(6):463-71.

Publication type: Clinical Trial; Multicenter Study; Randomized Controlled Trial

To determine the tolerability and efficacy of eletriptan in patients who had discontinued oral sumatriptan due to lack of efficacy or intolerable adverse events (AEs) during previous clinical treatment (not a controlled trial). Eletriptan is a potent, selective 5-HT1B/1D receptor agonist with beneficial pharmacokinetic properties compared with sumatriptan. In a double-blind, parallel group, placebo-controlled multicentre study, patients with and without aura (n = 446) were randomized to 40 mg eletriptan (E40, n = 188), 80 mg eletriptan (E80, n = 171) or placebo (n = 87) for treatment of up to three migraine attacks. Two-hour headache response, based on first-dose, first-attack data, was 59% for eletriptan 40 mg, 70% for eletriptan 80 mg, and 30% for placebo (P < 0.0001 for both doses of eletriptan vs. PBO; P < 0.05 for E80 vs. E40). Onset of action was rapid, with 1-h headache response rates significantly superior for E40 and E80 vs. placebo (40%, 48%, 15%; P < 0.0005). Both E40 and E80 were significantly superior to placebo, based on first-dose, first-attack data, for 2-h pain-free response (35%, 42%, and 7%; P < 0.0001). Both E40 and E80 demonstrated significant consistency of response, with headache relief rates at 2 h on at least two of three attacks in 66% and 72% vs. 15% on placebo (P < 0.001). AEs were mild to moderate in severity and dose related. The most commonly reported AEs included nausea, vomiting, asthenia, and chest symptoms. E40 and E80 produce an effective response in patients who had previously discontinued treatment with sumatriptan due to lack of efficacy or side-effects.

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