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A comparative study of the effectiveness of topiramate and flunarizine in independent series of chronic migraine patients without medication abuse
INTRODUCTION. Topiramate and onabotulinumtoxin A have proven to be effective in chronic migraine with or without medication abuse according to recent criteria of the International Headache Society’s Headache Classification. AIMS. To show that flunarizine is as effective as topiramate in cases of chronic migraine without medication abuse.
PATIENTS AND METHODS. We conducted a prospective, non-randomised, comparative study of two groups of patients paired by age and sex, with chronic migraine without abuse, who had been treated preventively for the first time with topiramate or flunarizine.
RESULTS. Forty patients treated with flunarizine were assigned a patient of their same sex and age who was being treated with topiramate. The mean rate of reduction in intense migraines in the topiramate group was 59% and in the flunarizine group, 58.5% (p = 0.9444); the responder rate at four months of treatment did not show any significant differences either, the figures being 75% for topiramate and 70% for flunarizine (p = 0.6236). The mean reduction of other headaches in the topiramate group was 57% and in the flunarizine group, 64% (p = 0.4261); the responder rate at four months of treatment was similar in the two groups: 76%. The percentage of dropouts from treatment was higher with topiramate (19.5%) than with flunarizine (10%) (p = 0.3493). No serious side effects occurred in either of the groups. In all, 78.9% of the patients who took topiramate said they were satisfied with the drug versus 75% of those in the flunarizine group (p = 0.7903).