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Curr Pain Headache Rep. 2003 Feb;7(1):63-6.

The role of anticonvulsants in preventive migraine therapy.

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  • 1Department of Emergency Medicine, Jacobi Medical Center, 1400 Pelham Parkway South, Bronx, NY 10462, USA.


The mainstay of migraine treatment is pharmacotherapy. There have been numerous medications used to prevent migraine headaches, including b-blockers, calcium-channel blockers, anticonvulsants, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. Sodium valproate is the only antiepileptic drug approved by the Food and Drug Administration for migraine prevention. Newer antiepileptics, including gabapentin and topiramate, are being evaluated for their role in preventive therapy. The mechanism of action of antiepileptics is not fully understood, but they all share a common role in enhancing gamma-aminobutyric acid-mediated inhibition. This article reviews the role of anticonvulsants in preventive migraine therapy.

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