Migraine misery OVER? Simple jab could HALF number of debilitating attacks

Posted on Nov 30 2017 - 7:17am by admin

Breakthrough studies showed once a month injections of a new wonder drug halved the number of debilitating attacks which leave millions bed bound and in agony.

Erenumab, administered the same way diabetics receive insulin, is the first treatment to prevent the onset of a condition that blights the lives of 8.5million Britons.

The drug is set to be granted a licence next year potentially paving the way for the therapy to be made available on the NHS.

Study leader Peter Goadsby, Professor of Neurology at King’s College, London, said: “This is the first drug that has been designed for migraine based on our understanding of what causes it. 

“It’s a big deal.  

One thing about migraine is that it is very unpredictable

Peter Goadsby, Professor of Neurology at King’s College, London

“It’s an all encompassing problem that is much more than a headache, the brain is like a fog. 

“It’s like suffering in a box.

“One thing about migraine is that it is very unpredictable. 

“This drug reduces the number of attacks so life becomes more predictable.”

Migraine is a misunderstood condition but one that can leave sufferers unable to tolerate sight, sound or smell.   

Woman suffering migraineGETTY

A jab of Erenumab could end the misery of migraine for millions of sufferers, scientists claimed

It is the third most common disease in the world and prevalent than diabetes, epilepsy and asthma combined.

More than three quarters of sufferers experience at least one attack a month and more than half experience severe impairment during episodes.

It is most common between the ages of 20 and 60.

Erenumab works by blocking the calcitonin gene-related peptide [CGRP] receptor which has been shown to play a critical role in attacks.

It is the first and only antibody designed to stop migraine happening rather than treating symptoms once they occur. 

Ground-breaking 24-week UK-US trials showed erenumab can “significantly reduce” the number of monthly “migraine days” experienced by sufferers.

In the study 955 patients were randomly given a monthly 140mg or 70mg injection of the drug, or placebo.

Results showed 50 per cent of patients treated with the higher dose of erenumab had the number of days with migraine symptoms cut by at half.

Patients also reported improved physical health and ability to participate in daily activities over the six month clinical trials. 

It was also found to have few side effects. 

A woman suffering from migraine GETTY

Migraine can leave sufferers unable to tolerate sight, sound or smell

Migraine has been linked to depression and absenteeism from migraine costs £2.25billion each year in the UK with 25 million working days lost.

Simon Evans, Chief Executive of Migraine Action, said: “Migraine is too often trivialised as just a headache when, in reality, it can be a debilitating, chronic condition that can destroy lives.

“The effects can last for hours – even days in many cases. 

“An option that can prevent migraine and that is well tolerated is therefore sorely needed and we hope that this marks the start of real change in how this condition is treated and perceived.”

Migraine is ranked globally as the seventh most disabling disease. 

A man suffering from migraineGETTY

More than three quarters of sufferers experience at least one attack a month

The success of trials, the results of which are published in the New England Journal, has prompted pharmaceutical giant Novartis to apply for a licence from the US Food and Drug Administration and European Medicines Agency.

If granted the medicine could be available as early as next year.

It has given fresh hope to sufferers like Imogen Smith, 19, from Southport, Merseyside, who said: “Getting a diagnosis took a long time as it was a while until I was referred to a specialist.

“Although I am happy with finally being diagnosed I find it an extremely difficult illness to explain and be understood. 

“It has caused me to have to drop out of college and make extreme changes to my life.”

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