From the Department of Neurology, University of Münster, Germany.
Treatment of Cluster Headache Attacks With Less Than 6 mg Subcutaneous Sumatriptan
Article first published online: 16 AUG 2005
Headache: The Journal of Head and Face Pain
Volume 45, Issue 8, pages 1069–1072, September 2005
How to Cite
Gregor, N., Schlesiger, C., Akova-Öztürk, E., Kraemer, C., Husstedt, I.-W. and Evers, S. (2005), Treatment of Cluster Headache Attacks With Less Than 6 mg Subcutaneous Sumatriptan. Headache: The Journal of Head and Face Pain, 45: 1069–1072. doi: 10.1111/j.1526-4610.2005.05189.x
- Issue published online: 16 AUG 2005
- Article first published online: 16 AUG 2005
- Accepted for publication April 4, 2005.
- cluster headache;
Background.—Subcutaneous (SQ) sumatriptan 6 mg is effective in the treatment of acute cluster headache attacks. However, patients sometimes benefit from a dose less than 6 mg.
Objective.—Therefore, we designed a prospective open study to evaluate how many patients benefit from a dose less than 6 mg SQ sumatriptan.
Methods.—We enrolled 81 consecutive patients with cluster headache and recorded their use of SQ sumatriptan and oxygen. Patients regularly using SQ sumatriptan 6 mg were advised to treat attacks with doses less than 6 mg and with oxygen. Efficacy and side effects of the different treatment options (6 mg, 3 mg, 2 mg, and oxygen) were evaluated.
Results.—As a result, 74% of the patients using SQ sumatriptan 3 mg showed efficacy and 89% reported efficacy after 2 mg. Seventy-nine percent reported side effects after the use of SQ sumatriptan 6 mg (29% severe side effects). After the use of 2 mg SQ sumatriptan, only 50% of the patients reported side effects, none of these were classified as severe. Patients' preference was 41% for 6 mg sumatriptan, 28% for doses less than 6 mg, and 31% for oxygen.
Conclusions.—We conclude that sumatriptan in doses less than 6 mg can be effective in the acute treatment of cluster headache attacks. We suggest that patients should have experience in their individual efficacy of sumatriptan doses less than 6 mg.