Research Will Inform New American Headache Society Migraine Guidelines

HealthDay News —  A review of scientific literature has revealed that a number of classes of drugs are effective for treating acute migraine. The study, published in Headache, will be the basis of the new American Headache Society guidelines for the treatment of migraine.

The medications include triptans, dihydroergotamine, and many nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, including aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen. Also on the list: butorphanol nasal spray, and the combination medications sumatriptan/naproxen and acetaminophen/aspirin/caffeine. Several other medications are “probably effective” or “possibly effective.”

While opioids such as butorphanol, codeine/acetaminophen, and tramadol/acetaminophen are likely effective migraine treatments, they are not recommended for regular use, the researchers said.

“We hope that this assessment of the efficacy of currently available migraine therapies helps patients and their physicians utilize treatments that are the most appropriate for them,” study coauthor Stephen Silberstein, MD, said in an American Headache Society news release. He is a professor of neurology and director of the Jefferson Headache Center of Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia.


  1. Marmura M et al. Headache. 2015; doi:10.1111/head.12499.