For a long time, migraines have hit our brains with the fury of a thousand drums or a thousand needles, depending on the person. Now, scientists may have developed two new types of drugs that can ease or even prevent the occurrence of these nuisances.
A pair of studies analyzed two drugs developed specifically for migraines. They reportedly work by interfering with a substance involved in modifying nerve signaling and progression of pain and symptoms. The effect is compared to soundproofing by Stephen Silberstein, a study author and director of the Jefferson Headache Center in Philadelphia.
The drugs aim to prevent any type of migraine symptoms including headaches, nausea, and sensitivity to light and sound. In this study, Silberstein gave monthly or quarterly injections of an antibody called fremanzumab to over 700 patients who experienced chronic migraines. Almost half of the people who got the drug experienced fewer migraine attacks while in others, the migraines vanished entirely.
“They offer the first migraine treatment that’s actually aimed at the disorder,” said Peter Goadsby, an author of one of the studies and a professor of neurology at King’s College in London.
Goadsby’s study had a different antibody called erenumab and generated similar results in patients who had more than ten migraines a month.
While this is good news for those who live next to loud neighbors, the drugs themselves are said to be pricey at first. This is due to their expensive compounds. Andrew Hershey, who directs the headache center at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital said the drugs can cost thousands of dollars a month. This means the drugs will most likely be reserved for people who have impairing migraines or those who haven’t been helped by other cheaper treatments.
The Food and Drug Administration is poised to review the two drugs in the following months. The new migraine treatment could arrive at your local pharmacy this year.
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