Migraines can cause disabling symptoms: throbbing headaches, nausea and vomiting, and sensitivity to light and sound. About 10 million Americans get them frequently. They’re most common in people in their 30s, mostly women, and can last for several hours or even days.
In one study, patients given Aimovig saw their migraine days cut from eight to four a month, on average. Those who got dummy shots had a reduction of two. Each patient group had similar minor side effects, mostly colds and respiratory infections.
Some patients saw their migraines completely eliminated, said Sean Harper, Amgen’s research director.
Aimovig and the migraine drugs in development target a substance called CGRP whose levels spike in the blood during a migraine, triggering symptoms.
The long-term safety of Aimovig, also known as erenumab, hasn’t been tested, and Amgen plans to track outcomes in women who become pregnant while taking it.
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