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Keywords:

  • migraine;
  • almotriptan;
  • open-label;
  • triptans;
  • headache

Objective.—Evaluate the long-term tolerability of almotriptan 12.5 mg for the treatment of acute migraine attacks occurring over a 6-month period.

Background.—Almotriptan is a second-generation 5-HT1B/1D agonist that exhibits vascular selectivity for meningeal arteries and has demonstrated efficacy for the treatment of acute migraine in short-term controlled trials.

Methods.—This was a 6-month open-label study. Adults (18 years of age or older) were required to have a diagnosis of acute migraine with or without aura (according to the diagnostic criteria of the International Headache Society), a history of at least 1 year of moderate-to-severe migraine pain with at least two and a maximum of six migraines per month, and at least 24 hours of freedom from head pain between attacks. Patients were instructed to take a single 12.5-mg dose of almotriptan at the onset of a migraine attack. If migraine pain did not disappear in 2 hours, escape medication could be taken; if relapse occurred in less than 24 hours, a second 12.5-mg dose could be taken. Tolerability was assessed from the nature and incidence of all adverse events, and efficacy was assessed according to the end point of pain relief 2 hours following almotriptan administration.

Results.—Of 585 patients treated, 582 were included in the intent-to-treat population. The most frequent drug-related adverse events were nausea (3.1%) and dizziness (2.4%). No serious drug-related adverse events were reported, and no deaths occurred. Adverse events led to discontinuation of treatment in 36 patients (6.2%). Drug-related chest pain was reported in 9 patients (1.5%). Seventy-six percent of patients achieved pain relief at 2 hours for all attacks treated, and 49% were pain-free at 2 hours. After a second dose of almotriptan 12.5 mg, pain relief was achieved in 87% of attacks, and 59% were pain-free. Pain relief and pain-free rates were higher among those with moderate baseline pain.

Conclusions.—When taken at attack onset, almotriptan 12.5 mg is well tolerated, safe, and effective for the long-term treatment of acute migraine.