Tackling Migraines Quickly With Beta-Blocker Eye Drops

Eye Drops For Migraines

Eye Drops With Beta Blockers Contain Migraine Pain (1)

In the latest edition of the journal Missouri Medicine, ophthalmologists Carl V. Migliazzo and John C. Hagan have have outlined how administering just 1-2 drops per eye of eye drops containing beta blockers stub migraine pain and in some cases almost cure migraineurs of attacks.

The eye doctors conducted their study on a population that comprised of women only migraineurs who were suffering for many years, even decades with migraine attacks.

Dr. Migliazzo seemed to have struck upon this treatment entirely by coincidence when he had been routinely managing his glaucoma patients with these eye drops. As per him, “People would report to me spontaneously saying: ‘You know, doctor, my headaches started getting better after I started on this medication.’” (2) And since then he has recommended it to his patients who also experience migraines. He does accept that there may be a placebo affect at work for some patients who said it worked for them. To obtain more data on his study, Dr. Migliazzo wants to examine more patients and have a control group as well to check on the eye drops placebo effect.

However, there may be a good scientific rationale behind why eye drops containing beta blockers work for migraine patients. Beta blockers are primary drugs in the current scenario to manage hypertension, certain heart conditions and are also prescribed as prophylaxis for migraines. Besides, they are very cheap and safe with really low side effects. In addition to this, beta blockers reach the blood stream relatively faster and in time to save a migraine attack.

During a study of one beta blocker, a patient told researchers that he not only had fewer chest pains, but fewer migraines as well. His migraines returned only after he was switched to a placebo.

According to Dr. Mittal who is working with Dr. Hagan, “Eye drops containing beta quickly drain into the nose, where they’re rapidly absorbed into the bloodstream through the mucus membrane. If you can get something in their system as soon as possible, you have a better chance” to stop migraine attacks.” (3)

So it sounds like a case that certainly requires further testing and research. Dr. Hagan hopes that someone will pursue this research to be sure if this certainly works or if there is a large placebo effect at work. Earlier studies from the 1980s have shown some migraineurs benefiting from the use of such eye drops but no further testing had been pursued on the matter.

SOURCES

  1. Image Credit: Putting Drops In Eye Stock Photo by Marin; Freedigitalphotos.net; Web September 2014; http://www.freedigitalphotos.net/images/Healthcare_g355-Putting_Drops_In_Eye_p112466.html
  2. Eye drops may hold quick relief for migraine sufferers; Kansas City News; Web September 2012; http://www.kansascity.com/news/local/article1379677.html
  3. Eye drops may hold quick relief for migraine sufferers; Life Extension Foundation; web September 2014; http://www.lef.org/news/LefDailyNews.htm?NewsID=22812&Section=Disease

 Copyrights apply on this blog. Please refer copyright permissions.

 

 

 

Candesartan Gives Migraineurs New Hope: Study

cipsartan16mg

 

Candesartan seems to reduce incidences of migraines just as well as Propranolol (1)

Hope comes for migraineurs via a new study conducted by St. Olavs Hospital in Trondheim, Norway and the Norwegian University of Science and Technology. Migraine patients who have been prescribed propranolol, (a popular beta-blocker that also doubles up to reduce the number and severity of migraine episodes) as a migraine prophylactic but get no relief from taking it can now breathe a sigh of relief as the study demonstrates that chemical candesartan proves as if not more effective for migraine prophylaxis.

Though the theory of candesartan working as an effective migraine prophylactic had been propounded more than a decade ago, it has been proved only now that the drug actually works. In the study, the placebo administered showed a 20% ‘feel-better’ on patients but administering of candesartan exhibited an additional 20-30% patients’ ‘feel-better’. (2)

Candesartan is a blocker of the angiotensin II receptor. Angiotensin is a peptide hormone that constricts blood vessels causing the blood pressure to rise and the heart to pump blood harder. Blocking receptors that receive angiotensin hormone helps relax/dilate the blood vessels thereby lowering blood pressure and easing the heartbeat. (3)

The study which examined 72 migraineurs who had migraines at least twice every month, was a triple blind test in which neither neither patients nor doctors nor those who analyzed the results knew whether the patients had been given placebo or real medicine. The patients used each treatment (candesartan, propranolol or placebo) for 12 weeks, and also underwent four weeks before start and between the treatment periods without any medication at all. Thus every patient was part of the study for almost a year.

According to Professor Lars Jacob Stovner, leader of Norwegian National Headache Centre, “This gives doctors more possibilities and we can help more people.” (4)

Common side effects of candesartan are: dizziness, fatigue, abdominal discomfort, headache and reduced renal functions.

Atacand (AstraZeneca), Cipsartan (Cipla) are some popular brand names under which Candesartan is sold. Propranolol on the other hand is sold under the brand names Inderal, Inderal LA, InnoPran etc.

SOURCES

  1. Image Credit: Cipsartan-16 (Candesartan Cilexetil Tablets 16 mg) from Cipla; pharmacywebstore.com; Web January 2014; http://bit.ly/1aqwpIO
  2. New Hope for Migraine Sufferers; ScienceDaily.com; Web January 2014; http://sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140113104841.htm
  3. Angiotensin II receptor blockers; Diseases and Conditions; Mayo Clinic; Web January 2014; http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/high-blood-pressure/in-depth/angiotensin-ii-receptor-blockers/art-20045009
  4. University of Science And Technology – News’ Web January 2014; http://www.ntnu.edu/news/2014/migraine-help

For more details of the study, please visit:

A Comparative Study Of Candesartan Versus Propranolol For Migraine Prophylaxis: A Randomised, Triple-Blind, Placebo-Controlled, Double Cross-Over Study; Sage Journals – Cephalagia; Web January 2014; http://cep.sagepub.com/content/early/2013/12/11/0333102413515348

Copyrights apply to this blog. Please refer copyright permissions. 

Drug Effectiveness & Power of Suggestion: Migraine Study

Role of Self Suggestions In Migraine

Doctor’s Words Affect Migraineurs’ Response To Drug (1)

A recent study conducted by researchers from Harvard Medical School and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston on migraineurs has shown that the type of labeling on the drug affects the body’s response to pain, nausea, photo-sensitivity, sound-sensitivity as well as vomiting (symptoms associated with a typical migraine attack).

According to Dr. Andrew Charles professor and director of the headache research and treatment program in the department of neurology at University of California School of Medicine, Los Angeles, who was not involved in the research, “When migraine patients were told by their doctor that a pill would help ease their headaches, this advice seemed to produce results whether or not the pill was a real migraine medication or a dummy placebo. Relief was still higher with the actual medicine, so drugs do work beyond the placebo effect, but the researchers say that the placebo effect may still account for half of the therapeutic value of a drug.” (2)

The research studied over 450 migraine attacks in total of 66 migraineurs over a period of their seven attacks.

  • The first attack was to go untreated but the migraineurs were expected to self-rate their pain and migraine-associated symptoms on a scale.
  • From the second attack up to the seventh attack the migraineurs were given medication (pills) in packets that were labelled.
  • The packets were labelled ‘Maxalt’ (Rizatriptan) – positive suggestion ( a drug that will help); ‘Placebo’ – a negative suggestion (drug with no effect on pain); ‘Maxalt or placebo’ – neutral suggestion (unknown if the drug will help or not).
  • But for two situations, one of the “Maxalt” envelopes actually held a placebo and one of the “placebo” envelopes contained Maxalt.
  • The migraineurs were to record the level of pain and discomfort 30 minutes from the onset of the migraine attack (for each of episode 2 through 7th episode)
  • Then they were to take the pills in the labelled packets.
  • Then they were to record their pain and discomfort two our thence ( A total of 2.5 hours after the commencement of a migraine attack)
  • In addition, they were also given a rescue medication in the event that the study medicines did not provide them with any relief. This rescue medication consisted of 1 Maxalt and 2 Naproxen tablets.
  • But for two situations, one of the “Maxalt” envelopes actually held a placebo and one of the “placebo” envelopes contained Maxalt.

Here is a chart depiction of the study methodology: (3)

Migraine Placebo Effect

As per Dr. Ted Kaptchuk, a senior author of the study, director of the Program in Placebo Studies, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, and a professor of medicine at the Harvard Medical School, “We found that under each of the three messages, the placebo effect accounted for at least 50 percent of the subjects’ overall pain relief. When Maxalt was labelled “Maxalt,” the patients’ reports of pain relief more than doubled compared to when Maxalt was labeled “placebo.This tells us that the effectiveness of a good pharmaceutical may be doubled by enhancing the placebo effect.”

The authors were surprised to find that even when patients were given a placebo labeled as “placebo,” they reported pain relief, compared with no treatment. They had no idea why this occurred.

However, the findings of the study are best used for indicative purposes only and more research will be needed to be done to find out these results could be applied to clinical care and how placebos might help boost drug treatment care. As per Kaptchuk it is possible that simply hearing the words of medicine can have a healing effect, he noted.

SOURCES:

  1. Image Credit: Help Yourself Key Shows Self Improvement Online; Image by Stuart Miles; Freedigitalphotos.net; Web January 2014; http://www.freedigitalphotos.net/images/help-yourself-key-shows-self-improvement-online-photo-p211446
  2. Power of Suggestion Shown in Study of Migraine Drug; WebMD.com; January 2014; http://www.webmd.com/migraines-headaches/news/20140108/power-of-suggestion-revealed-in-study-of-migraine-drug
  3. Table Credit: Placebo effects are not the “power of positive thinking”; Science-Based Medicine; Web January 2014; http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/ted-kaptchuk-versus-placebo-effects-again/

Copyrights apply to this blog. Please refer copyright permissions.

OptiNose – New Migraine Treatment: Data Presented At IHC 2013

TE_optinoseOptiNose’s Breath Powered Nasal Delivery Device (1)

Drug delivery technology corporation OptiNose Inc. has presented results of a pivotal phase III TARGET study at the International Headache Congress at Boston comparing both the efficacy and the safety of it’s newly developed technology – the OptiNose Breath Powered nasal delivery device with other drug delivery systems and placebos. The abstracts are to be published in Cephalalgia, the Journal of the International Headache Society

The breath-powered device containing low dose sumatriptan was used to deliver the drug in patients experiencing moderate to severe migraine pain, and then compared to placebo administered via the same route later.

According to Ramy A. Mahmoud, M.D., M.P.H., Chief Operating Officer of OptiNose, “Various data we are presenting today will highlight how this novel delivery technology improves the delivery of medicine to hard-to-reach regions deep in the nasal cavity, how it can produce fast and efficient absorption of medicine into the blood, and how effective treatment with this technology can be. There are nearly 30 million migraine sufferers in the United States and many will be able to benefit from a new low-dose treatment that can rapidly provide effective pain relief with few adverse events.” (2)

Sections discussed in the International Headache Congress 2013 included:

  • Efficacy and Safety of a Novel Breath Powered Powder Sumatriptan Intranasal Treatment for Acute Migraine;
  • Data from a randomized, single-dose, four-way cross-over study assessing the absorption into the blood of sumatriptan intranasal powder administered using the  Breath Powered OptiNose drug delivery device compared to Imitrex® subcutaneous injection, Imitrex nasal spray and Imitrex oral tablets in healthy adult volunteers.
  • A review of evidence for human in vivo drug deposition patterns in different regions of the nose with devices intended to provide reliable and efficient drug delivery to upper/posterior nerve structures deep in the nasal cavity.

To know more about the TARGET study, please visit the OptiNose website link given below. (3)

SOURCES:

  1. Image Credit: Nansen Neuroscience Netwrok; Optinose: Novel Nasal Drug Delivery device; Web June 2013; http://www.nansenneuro.net/news/member-news/285-novel-nasal-drug-delivery-device.html
  2. OptiNose AS to Present Data Highlighting New Migraine Treatment at International Headache Congress; BioSpace.com; Web June 2013; http://www.biospace.com/news_story.aspx?StoryID=301426&full=1
  3. A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled, Parallel-Group Study Evaluating The Efficacy And Safety Of A Single 20 Mg Dose Of Sumatriptan Powder Delivered Intranasally With The Bi-Directional Device In Adults With Acute Migraine With Or Without Aura; TARGET Phase III Study; Optinose.com; Web June 2013; http://www.optinose.com/clinical-trials/target-clinical-trial-for-migraine

TO VIEW THE MULTIMEDIA CONTENT ASSOCIATED WITH THIS RELEASE, PLEASE CLICK: http://www.multivu.com/players/English/57713-optinose-innovative-breath-powered-nasal-delivery-technology-delivers-drugs-to-treat-variety-of-medical-conditions/.

 Copyrights apply on this blog. Please read copyright permissions.