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Pain free efficacy of sumatriptan in the early treatment of migraine.

Author(s): Jelinski SE, Becker WJ, Christie SN, Ahmad FE, Pryse-Phillips W, Simpson SD.

Affiliation(s): Department of Clinical Neurosciences, University of Calgary Calgary, AB, Canada.

Publication date & source: 2006, Can J Neurol Sci. , 33(1):73-9

BACKGROUND: There is evidence that headache response rates may be higher if triptans are used early when a migraine attack is still mild, as compared to when it is treated after pain has reached moderate or severe intensity. METHODS: In this randomized, double blind, placebo controlled, parallel group clinical trial, 361 patients took either placebo, sumatriptan 50 mg, or sumatriptan 100 mg in a single attack study. The primary outcome measure was pain-free status at two hours. RESULTS: In the intention to treat group, two hour pain free rates were 16%, 40%, and 50% in the placebo group, sumatriptan 50 mg group, and the sumatriptan 100 mg group respectively (p < 0.001, active treatment groups vs. placebo). CONCLUSIONS: Both sumatriptan 50 mg and 100 mg were significantly superior to placebo for the pain-free end point at two hours. The pain-free response rates in this trial where sumatriptan was taken while the headache was still mild were generally higher than in older clinical trials where headache was treated after reaching a moderate or severe intensity.

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