This headache medicine is not for everyone: Do not use

According to a recent study, triptan drugs used in the treatment of migraine are not recommended if the patient has risk factors for cardiovascular diseases.

Triptans are used as a specific medication for migraine headaches. Adobe Stock/AOP

A recent study warns against using triptans, a precision medicine used in the treatment of migraines, in patients with coronary artery disease and others.

For otherwise healthy patients, triptans are considered very safe, but according to research, they can increase the risk of stroke and heart attack if the patient is at high risk of cardiovascular disease.

The results of the study have been published JAMA Department of Neurology.

According to the study, a patient's risk of heart or cerebrovascular accident increased shortly after starting triptans. However, in practice, the risk is very small and diseases are very rare. This risk mainly concerns patients who already have cardiovascular disease risk factors.

In light of the results, the use of triptans should be avoided if the patient has coronary artery disease or cerebrovascular disease.

Uutispalvelu Duodecim announced the results of the study.

Migraines sometimes go away with rest, but usually require medication. Adobe Stock / AOP

Effective treatment

In the treatment of migraine, paracetamol, an anti-inflammatory drug or both together are used in sufficiently large doses.

If pain relievers do not help or the pain returns quickly, triptans are prescribed. They are specific medications for the pain phase of a migraine, and there are several types of them.

This drug is effective in about two-thirds of migraine attacks.

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A triptan is taken immediately after the onset of migraine or nausea. The drug can be taken orally, as a nasal spray, or by injection.

Kaibei Treatment Recommendation for Migraine Taking triptans already in the mild phase of pain inhibits the sensitivity of pain pathways, which is associated with a risk of chronicity and exacerbation of migraine.

However, the medicine should not be used for migraine until the light symptom is completely gone. In addition, the patient should not use combined oral contraceptives and smoking, as this combination acts as at least a theoretical risk factor for cerebrovascular disorders.

In migraine, the headache is throbbing, accompanied by nausea and vomiting, as well as sensitivity to light and smell. The pain may last from several hours to a few days. Adobe Stock / AOP

Many things trigger

Migraine is a common neurological encephalitis disease affecting people of all ages. 5 percent of men and 15 percent of women suffer from it.

Some migraine patients have a premonitory symptom or aura before the headache. Mostly, it's a vision problem. It is estimated that 15 out of every 100 migraine sufferers experience aura symptoms.

Bright or flashing lights, heat, large temperature changes, smells, alcohol, being watched, and certain foods can trigger seizures.

Migraine patients have a lower threshold for nerve cell hyperactivity. The brain then becomes more sensitive than usual to, for example, smell or light.


Now is the worst time to attack:

1. Migraine attacks are often triggered by some external factors that vary from person to person.

Now, the increasing light in spring is causing migraine attacks for many people. In the spring and summer, when you are awake more in bright evenings, the risk of seizures increases due to an irregular sleep pattern.

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2. If bright spring light triggers seizures, wear sunglasses. Avoid looking directly at the sun.

3. Get decent blackout curtains.

4. Then, when the weather starts to warm up, pay extra attention to drinking enough water. Eat regularly even if you are not hungry.

5. Identify foods that trigger migraines and avoid them if possible. Examples include hard cheeses, sausages, chocolate, cola drinks and wines.

6. Use alcohol in moderation. It is also observed that it can trigger a migraine attack.

7. In case of seizure, take adequate amount of pain reliever at the right time. Adequate doses of the drug are important for rapid termination of seizures.

It is recommended to use an anti-inflammatory drug as a medicine. A single dose should be very large: ibuprofen 800-1200 mg, tolfenamic acid 200 mg or naproxen 500-1000 mg.

If the effect of pain relievers is insufficient, specific migraine medications, such as triptans with various names, may be used.

The medicine is taken immediately after the onset of migraine.

8. Migraine attacks should be well treated because long migraine attacks are already very difficult to treat. Ineffective seizure therapy can easily lead to chronic migraine.

If you have at least 2 or 3 migraine days per month, or if the migraines make daily life difficult, you can start preventive medication.

Source: Iltalehti Archive, neurologist Petra Keschi-Santi

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