PainRelief.com Interview with:
Richard B. Lipton, M.D.
Professor, The Saul R. Korey Department of Neurology
Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences
Professor, Department of Epidemiology & Population Health
Edwin S. Lowe Chair in Neurology
Vice Chair The Saul R. Korey Department of Neurology
Director, Montefiore Headache Center
Albert Einstein College of Medicine
PainRelief.com: What is the background for this study
Response: Almost everyone with migraine takes acute treatments at the time of attacks to relieve pain and restore function. Acute treatments include over-the-counter medications. prescription drugs and devices. The most widely used prescription drugs for migraine are triptans (such as sumatriptan and rizatriptan) and NSAIDs (such as ibuprofen and naproxen).
Opioids are not recommended in treatment guidelines as acute treatments for migraine. Longitudinal studies show that in people with migraine treatment with opioids is associated with dose dependent acceleration of headache frequency and the development of chronic migraine in people with episodic migraine. The purpose of this study was to determine the relative frequency of opioid use and the characteristics of those who use opioids to treat migraine. The hope is to use this information to develop programs which will encourage guideline compliant treatment.