Adolescents to benefit from launch of new migraine treatment

September 01, 2003

Thousands of adolescents (12-17 years of age) suffering with the misery of migraine headaches are set to benefit from the launch today of a new migraine treatment, ImigranTM (sumatriptan) 10mg Nasal Spray. Imigran 10mg Nasal Spray will be the first and only triptan (class of migraine treatment) specifically licensed for use in adolescents and will bring much-needed relief to those adolescents affected by this debilitating neurological condition. Imigran 10mg Nasal Spray has a fast and effective onset of action and Imigran 20mg Nasal Spray is already a well-established treatment for adults with migraine.

It is estimated that up to ten percent of adolescents are affected by migraine and as many as 2.75 million school days are lost each year as a result of migraine attacks in children and adolescents.(1) Migraine headaches in this age group can last between two and 48 hours(2) and in addition to the severe pain, symptoms may also include nausea, vomiting and intense sensitivity to light or noise.

Clinical studies have shown adolescent migraineurs to have raised levels of anxiety that can be attributed to their migraine attacks.(3) These migraine attacks can also be associated with considerable suffering, with adolescents often disabled due to feelings of helplessness, frustration and anger regarding their migraine.(4)

Ann Turner, Director of the Migraine Action Association said, "Migraine is not just a headache but a potentially debilitating neurological condition. Adolescents suffering from migraine attacks should seek help as doctors, nurse specialists and pharmacists are important allies in the battle against migraine and their advice and support can be invaluable. Although there is no cure for migraine, it is possible to bring the condition under control with the range of treatments now available and the introduction of a management programme tailored to each patient."

Migraine attacks may be associated with marked distress and functional disability (requiring absence from school) during adolescence.(3) These attacks also have the potential for significant impact on an adolescents' home and family activities and social interaction with friends.

Dr Manuela Fontebasso, General Practitioner and clinical assistant at the Headache Clinic at York District Hospital, said, "Historically, it has not been possible to routinely prescribe triptan medication to migraineurs of this age group. The introduction of new treatments such as Imigran for adolescents will be welcomed by both physicians and patients battling with this incapacitating condition. We look forward to Imigran 10mg Nasal Spray offering migraine patients in this age group, an improved outlook and quality of life."

GlaxoSmithKline, one of the world's leading research-based pharmaceutical and healthcare companies, is committed to improving quality of life by enabling people to do more, feel better and live longer.
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References
1. Hartmaier SL, et al. Development of a brief 24-hour adolescent migraine functioning questionnaire. Headache 2001; 41: 150-156
2. International Headache Classification Committee. ICD-10 guide for headaches. International Headache Classification Committee.
Cephalalgia 1997; 17(suppl 19): 1-82 3. Smith MS, et al. Comparative study of anxiety, depression, somatization, functional disability and illness attribution in adolescents with chronic fatigue or migraine. Pediatrics April 2003; 111(4): 376-381
4. Cady RK, et al. Prevalence of headache in children. Headache 1996; 7: 312-318
5. Imigran 10mg Nasal Spray Summary of Product Characteristics

Shire Hall Communications

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