THE Spanish Society of Neurology says that 1.5 million people in the country suffer from chronic migraines and experience headaches 15 or more days a month.
Finding a way to reduce this pain so that they can lead as normal a life as possible without letting the pain limit their quality of life, leads them to resort to medications such as ibuprofen- one of the most widely used to treat migraines.
However, we are becoming more and more aware that excessive consumption of ibuprofen is not good for your health and has a large number of side effects, such as stomach problems, causing irritation and ulcers.
In addition, a study has found that it is not the most effective medication for treating migraines, something that could help improve the quality of life for those who suffer from them.
Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology, has published a survey based on data collected over the past six years.
Through a phone app, they have studied more than 300,000 people who suffer from migraine and they have been entering data on the frequency, the causes and also the medication that was most effective when it came to relieving pain.
The researchers analysed 25 drugs used by sufferers and the study concluded that not only are there medications that are more effective than ibuprofen, but they also come in three classes: triptans, ergot and antiemetics.
Looking at the drugs specifically, the three main ones are eletriptan, zolmitriptan, and sumatriptan.
Study participants noted that ibuprofen was effective 42% of the time; Eletriptan, on the other hand, was useful 78% of the time, zolmitriptan 74% of the time, and sumatriptan was helpful 72% of the time.
“For people whose acute migraine medications don’t work for them, our hope is that this study will show that there are many alternatives that work for migraine, and we encourage people to talk to their doctors about how to treat this painful and debilitating condition,” said one of the study’s authors, Chia-Chun Chiang, of the Mayo Clinic in Rochester. Minnesota, and a member of the American Academy of Neurology.
Also according to the results, it is possible to use triptans for the treatment of migraine more commonly, instead of reserving them for severe attacks.