2 New Drugs Pending With the FDA Could Mean the End of Migraines

If you’re someone who suffers from migraines, we have some good news. Two studies found two different types of drugs that can limit the severity and amount of headaches by up to 50 percent in some people.

One study tested the effectiveness of the drug erenumab. Before the study, participants reported getting migraines eight days a month on average. During a 6-month trial, researchers found 46 percent of people given a low-dose of a monthly injection reported their migraine frequency decreased by about half – 3.2 days a month to be exact. And fifty percent of people given a high-dose reported a decrease to about 3.7 days. While only 27 percent of people given the placebo reported a reduction to 1.8 days.

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The other study tested the drug fremanezumab both on a monthly and quarterly basis. After a three-month period, 41 percent of people who were given the drug once a month said their headaches reduced by half while only 18 percent of those given the placebo reported the same results.

Another group received the drug injection just once in those three months and 38 percent reported frequency reduction by half.

These studies are further proof that antibody therapies aren’t successful on everyone, yet the overall success of the drugs is promising. In an editorial by Dr. Andrew Hershey published alongside the studies, he notes that the quick improvements shown by the participants suggests that doctors and patients will be able to decide quickly whether a treatment is working or not.

Dr. Hershey also points out that in both trials, a number of people became completely headache free. With few side effects reported, the main complaint seemed to be the pain and irritation during injection.

However, Dr. Hershey believes more research needs to be done to see if certain people respond differently to the drugs and whether one works better than the other. He also believes cost of these drugs once they hit the market will prevent people from reaping their benefits. “Many patients will probably still have a response to standard multidisciplinary treatment that is less costly in patient and provider time and dollars,” Hershey wrote.

Still, the research looks promising as both drugs have submitted approval with the Food and Drug Administration with hopes to bring them to the market in 2018.

2 Comments
  • Concerned
    Posted on

    How can you title this article "could mean the end of migraines?" 40% of the people had a 50% reduction in frequency but still have migraines. That means a vast majority still have migraines. These drugs can definitely help the overwhelming suffering but it is irresponsible to say it "could be the end of the migraines." This efficacy is similar to currently available migraine drugs without the cardiovascular side effects.

  • Teri Robert
    Posted on

    Good reporting on these new drugs, BUT why ruin it with the overblown headline? Even at their most successful, these medications hardly mean, "The End of Migraines." Do you have any idea how much those of us living with Migraine disease detest this type of thing? The disease has enough stigma attached to it without people making it worse with overblown, inaccurate headlines. :-(

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