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Use of intravenous valproic acid for acute migraine.

Author(s): Frazee LA, Foraker KC

Affiliation(s): Internal Medicine, Akron General Medical Center, Akron, OH 44307, USA. lfrazee@agmc.org

Publication date & source: 2008-03, Ann Pharmacother., 42(3):403-7. Epub 2008 Feb 26.

Publication type: Review

OBJECTIVE: To review the literature regarding the use of intravenous valproic acid in aborting an acute migraine attack. DATA SOURCES: A MEDLINE (1967-June 2007) and bibliographic search of the English-language literature was conducted using the search terms valproic acid and migraine disorders. STUDY SELECTION AND DATA EXTRACTION: All articles identified through the search were included. DATA SYNTHESIS: Divalproex sodium is approved by the Food and Drug Administration for the prevention of migraine headaches. The use of intravenous valproic acid has been studied as a possible treatment for acute migraine. Available studies are small, mostly open-label and non-placebo-controlled, and used variable doses. Valproic acid has not been shown to be superior to comparator drugs and was inferior to prochlorperazine in one trial. CONCLUSIONS: Intravenous valproic acid has not been proven effective for acute migraine treatment. Future trials should be larger, placebo-controlled, and use a standardized dose and outcome measures.

Page last updated: 2008-08-11

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