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Springerplus. 2013 Oct 29;2:573. doi: 10.1186/2193-1801-2-573. eCollection 2013.

Preventive effect of cyproheptadine hydrochloride in refractory patients with frequent migraine.

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Department of Neurology, Tokai University Hachioji Hospital, 1838 Ishikawa-cho, Hachioji city, Tokyo 192-0032 Japan.


Cyproheptadine hydrochloride (CH) is rarely used to treat adult patients with migraine in Japan because it causes sleepiness. In this study, we investigated the preventive effect of CH in 12 patients who had failed to respond to conventional preventive treatments among 103 migraine patients treated at our hospital. These 12 subjects had all received unsuccessful migraine prophylaxis with lomerizine, valproic acid and topiramate, or had discontinued these treatments due to adverse reactions. Initially, the subjects were given 4 mg CH before sleeping. In those who experienced no clinically significant sleepiness following the treatment, the drug was orally administered at 4 mg after breakfast as well (8 mg per day in total). Drug efficacy was evaluated by examining the frequency of migraine at one month and three months after the start of treatment. The frequency of migraine was dramatically reduced in all patients within 7 to 10 days after starting treatment. The average frequency of migraine during the three-month period was 2.6 episodes per month, representing a significant (p < 0.01) reduction from the pretreatment frequency of over 10 per month. Our results indicate that CH may be effective as a migraine-preventive treatment for patients in whom conventional drugs have been ineffective or have caused side effects. But this study is not a double blind randomized trial, and an open study with no control group.

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