Is There a Migraine Miracle Drug?
If you are a migraineur the term “preventative medicine” isn’t one you hear often. More than likely, you have to wait for the migraine symptoms to begin—say, the light sensitivity or nausea—before popping a pill to help manage the inevitable pain. Plus, many migraine sufferers take depression or anxiety medication in addition to pain pills to manage other migraine-related symptoms. Yet, at the annual meeting of the American Headache Society, three drug companies presented research on a new type of treatment that just might get rid of a headache before it starts.
“They’re a new class to treat migraine preventatively,” said American Headache Society president, Dr. Lawrence C. Newman to Medscape Medical News. “We’re excited because there hasn’t been a new medicine designed specifically to prevent migraine in over 50 years.”
Studies on this new class of drugs all revolve around calcitonin gene-related peptide or CGRP, a compound found in the body that plays a significant role in the nervous system’s pain signaling. The new medication, which is administered as a monthly injection, uses CGRP antibodies to bring the levels of CGRP down and thus counter migraine pain.
Initial research from the three drug companies has shown positive results in reducing the frequency of migraines. For example, one pharmaceutical company reported a 50 percent or greater reduction in the number of migraine headaches per month among their participants.
Neurologists are cautious, however. The studies are still in the early stages—none having been researched for more than a year and no one knows what the long-term impact CGRP antibodies could have on other organs of the body such as the liver. If all goes well, the drugs are expected to be available to the public in five years.
While we can all continue to hope for the eventual release of a miracle drug for what causes migraines, the innovative Omega migraine procedure has allowed hundreds of migraine sufferers to stop taking medications altogether and put an end to regular doctor visits. The surgical procedure has been featured in more than 50 independent, peer-reviewed medical papers with a recent one showing an 80-90% success rate in certain types of chronic migraine patients. No pills, no regular injections, and no more doctor visits—now that sounds like a miracle.