"For the first time in nearly three decades, people with migraine not helped by existing medications may have a new option to find relief during attacks," said Richard B. Lipton, M.D., the study's first author and Edwin S. Lowe Professor and vice chair of the Saul R. Korey Department of Neurology at Einstein and director of the Montefiore Headache Center.
Migraine headache affects about 12 to 14% of people, or more than a billion individuals worldwide. This chronic neurologic disorder involves periodic attacks of head pain along with symptoms that may include nausea as well as sensitivity to light and sound. More than three-quarters of migraine sufferers experience at least one migraine attack per month, and more than half are severely impaired during their attacks.
People - Drugs - Examples - Rizatriptan - Triptans
Currently, many people with migraine take triptan drugs (examples include sumitriptan, eletriptan, and rizatriptan), which were introduced in the 1990s. Triptans halt acute migraines by stimulating serotonin receptors, which in turn reduces inflammation and constricts blood vessels. But triptans don't help everyone, they can produce intolerable side effects, and -- since they constrict vessels -- shouldn't be taken by people with cardiovascular disease (CVD) or major CVD risk factors.
People not helped by triptans, or those who can't take them, may benefit from the new class of drugs called, gepants, which includes rimegepant. Gepants work by targeting the receptors for a small protein, called CGRP, long implicated in migraine. During migraine attacks, CGRP is released resulting in pain. Gepants relieve the pain and other symptoms of migraine by blocking the CGRP pathway.
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