Oh No - Not Again! My Migraine is Back

Migraine recurrence reduced with Relpax

/ Author:  / Reviewed by: Joseph V. Madia, MD

(RxWiki News) Migraines can be agonizing for a person. On top of the misery during a migraine episode, concerns about recurrence of headaches soon after an attack are a cruel reality for many.

A migraine study has taken on the matter of recurrence: the tendency of migraine headaches to flare up again soon after being controlled by medication.

The study found several major risk factors for recurrence and demonstrated that Relpax is effective at reducing the chance of recurrence.

"Ask your neurologist about supplementation to help with migraines."

David Dodick, M.D., professor of neurology at the Mayo Clinic and his team of associates pooled data on migraine recurrence from 10 randomized, double-blind trials.

The objective of their analysis was to identify significant risk factors causing an individual to be predisposed to suffer a headache recurrence within 22 hours following the successful treatment of a migraine attack. A migraine is considered successfully treated if it is gone two hours after its onset.

Another objective of Dodick's study was to measure the ability of Relpax (eletriptan), when used during the initial attack, to reduce the chance of recurrence.

The study pooled data from trials evaluating Relpax at 40 mg and 80 mg dosages.

Of the 4,312 patients involved in the study whose migraines responded to treatment within two hours, 29 percent suffered a recurrence within the next 22 hours. Three factors made an individual more likely to suffer a recurrence:

  • being female
  • being older than 35,
  • having high average level of pain during the attack

Study participants who had all three risk factors enjoyed far greater freedom from recurrence if they took Relpax, compared to the control group that received a placebo (sugar pill).

Participants with all three risk factors who took the 40 mg dose had a recurrent headache 35.6 percent of the time. Similarly, high-risk participants who were members of the 80 mg group suffered recurrence 32.9 percent of the time. For the placebo group, the recurrence rate was a much higher - 47.8 percent.

The researchers looked at the data for participants who had only two risk factors, and the results were much the same.

In summary, female gender, age over 35, and high average or "baseline" pain during the initial attack where the risk factors making an individual more likely to suffer a recurrence. And Relpax demonstrated effectiveness not only in its usual role as an antidote to stop migraine attacks, but also as a preventative measure against the threat of recurrence following an attack. 

This study was published in the journal Headache.

Reviewed by: 
Review Date: 
December 23, 2011
Last Updated:
December 28, 2011