A double-blind parallel study compared the efficacy and safety of naproxen sodium (NPX) and ergotamine tartrate (ERG) as abortive therapy for acute headache in 79 patients with classical or common migraine. The design study was of the double-blind design. Forty-two patients completed the study. Discontinuation of treatment was generally due to lack of efficacy or adverse reactions. NPX was significantly better than ERG in the overall efficacy of treatment rated by the patients (p < 004). NPX was comparable to ERG in reducing the severity and duration of the headache and its associated symptoms. In classical migraine, NPX was better than ERG in alleviating the severity of headache. Patients in the NPX group tended to use less rescue medication. There was no significant difference in the frequency of side-effects reported by the patients under NPX or ERG. This study demonstrates that NPX is as safe as ERG, and somewhat more effective in acute migraine attacks (although the difference is not statistically significant) and that migrainous patients tend to prefer NPX to ERG in treating their acute migraine headaches.