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Pediatrics. 2015 Feb;135(2):232-8. doi: 10.1542/peds.2014-2432.

A comparison of acute treatment regimens for migraine in the emergency department.

Author information

1
Division of Emergency Medicine, Boston Children's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts richard.bachur@childrens.harvard.edu.
2
Division of Emergency Medicine, Boston Children's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts.

Abstract

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES:

Migraine headache is a common pediatric complaint among emergency department (ED) patients. There are limited trials on abortive therapies in the ED. The objective of this study was to apply a comparative effectiveness approach to investigate acute medication regimens for the prevention of ED revisits.

METHODS:

Retrospective study using administrative data (Pediatric Health Information System) from 35 pediatric EDs (2009-2012). Children aged 7 to 18 years with a principal diagnosis of migraine headache were studied. The primary outcome was a revisit to the ED within 3 days for discharged patients. The primary analysis compared the treatment regimens and individual medications on the risk for revisit.

RESULTS:

The study identified 32,124 children with migraine; 27,317 (85%) were discharged, and 5.5% had a return ED visit within 3 days. At the index visit, the most common medications included nonopioid analgesics (66%), dopamine antagonists (50%), diphenhydramine (33%), and ondansetron (21%). Triptans and opiate medications were administered infrequently (3% each). Children receiving metoclopramide had a 31% increased odds for an ED revisit within 3 days compared with prochlorperazine. Diphenhydramine with dopamine antagonists was associated with 27% increased odds of an ED revisit compared with dopamine antagonists alone. Children receiving ondansetron had similar revisit rates to those receiving dopamine antagonists.

CONCLUSIONS:

The majority of children with migraines are successfully discharged from the ED and only 1 in 18 required a revisit within 3 days. Prochlorperazine appears to be superior to metoclopramide in preventing a revisit, and diphenhydramine use is associated with increased rates of return.

KEYWORDS:

emergency; headache; migraine; therapeutics

PMID:
25624377
DOI:
10.1542/peds.2014-2432
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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