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Medications for Migraines

Today there are a lot of medications to treat headaches and Migraines. As you can see from the list below there are many medications used to successfully treat both headache and migraine, and for their prevention. Many people find that rather than a single medication, it turns out that a combination is sometimes more successful.

The following list of medications are successfully used by some headache and Migraine patients as preventive medications. They're listed first by class, then generic names followed by brand names.

Antihypertensives (blood pressure meds)

  • Clonidine (Catapres)
  • Guanfacine (Tenex)

ACE Inhibitors:

  • Benazepril (Lotensin)
  • Captopril (Capoten)
  • Enalapril (Vasotec)
  • Fosinopril (Monopril)
  • Lisinopril (Zestril, Prinivil)
  • Moexipril (Univasc)
  • Perindopril (Aceon)
  • Quinapril (Accupril)
  • Ramipril (Altace)
  • Trandolapril (Mavik)

Alzheimer's/Dementia Medicaton

  • Memantine (Namenda)

Angiotensin II Inhibitors

  • Candesartan (Atacand)
  • Eprosartan (Teveten)
  • Irbesartan (Avapro)
  • Losartan (Cozaar)
  • Olmesartan (Benicar)
  • Telmisartan (Midcardis)
  • Valsartan (Diovan)

Beta Blockers

  • Acebutolol (Secral)
  • Atenolol (Tenormin)
  • Betaxolol (Kerlone)
  • Bisoprolol (Zebeta, Emconcor)
  • Cartelol (Cartrol)
  • Labetalol (Normodyne, Trandate)
  • Metoprolol (Lopressor)
  • Nadolol (Corgard)
  • Penbutololm aka Levatol)
  • Pindolol (Visken, Syn-Pindolol)
  • Propranolol (Inderal)
  • Timolol (Blocadren)

Calcium Channel Blockers

  • Amlodipine (Norvasc)
  • Bepridil (Vascor)
  • Diltiazem (Cardizem, Tiazac)
  • Felodipine (Plendil)
  • Flunarizine (Sibelium (Canada))
  • Isradipine (DynaCirc)
  • Nicardipine (Cardene)
  • Nifedipine (Adalat, Procardia)
  • Nimodipine (Nimotop)
  • Nisoldipine (Sular)
  • Verapamil (Calan, Verelan, Isoptin

Antihistamines

  • Cyproheptadine (Periactin)
  • Pizotifen (Sandomigran (UK))

Tricyclic Antidepressants (TCAs)

  • Amitriptyline (Endep)
  • Amoxapine (Asendin)
  • Clomipramine, aka, Anafranil)
  • Desipramine (Norpramin)
  • Doxepin (Sinequan)
  • Imipramine (Norfranil, Tofranil)
  • Nortriptyline (Pamelor, Aventyl)
  • Protriptyline (Vivactil)
  • Trimipramine (Surmontil)

MAOI Antidepressants

  • Isocarboxazid (Marplan)
  • Phenelzine (Nardil)
  • Tranylcypromine (Parnate)

Other Antidepressants

Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs)

  • Citalopram (Celexa)
  • Escitalopram oxalate (Lexapro)
  • Fluoxetine (Prozac)
  • Fluvoxamine (Luvox)
  • Paroxetine (Paxil)
  • Sertraline (Zoloft)

Selective serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SSNRIs)

  • Duloxetine hydrochloride (Cymbalta)
  • Venlafaxine (Effexor, Effexor XR)

ADHD Medications

  • Dextroamphetamine (Adderall)
  • Atomoxetine HCl (Strattera)
  • Methylphenidate HCl (Concerta, Ritalin)
  • Pemoline (Cylert)

Arthritis Meds, Cox-2 Enzyme Inhibitors

Muscle Relaxants

  • Carisoprodol (Soma)
  • Cyclobenzaprine (Flexeril)
  • Lioresal (Baclofen)
  • Metaxalone (Skelaxin)
  • Tizanidine (Zanaflex)

Antiseizure medications

  • Carbamazepine (Tegretol)
  • Clonazepam, Klonopin)
  • Clorazepate (Tranxene)
  • Divalproex (Depakote)
  • Gabapentin (Neurontin)
  • Levetiracetam, Keppra)
  • Lamotrigine (Lamictal)
  • Oxcarbazepine, Trileptal)
  • Tiagabine (Gabitril)
  • Topiramate (Topamax)
  • Valproate Sodium (Depacon)
  • Zonisamide (Zonegran)
  • Pregabalin (Lyrica)

Ergot Alkaloid

  • Methylergonovine (Methergine (the only ergot used as a preventive))

Leukotriene Blockers

  • Montelukast (Singulair)
  • Zafirlukast (Accolate)
  • Zyleuton (Zyflo)

Others

  • Baclofen (Lioresal)
  • Botulinum Toxin Type A (Botox)
  • Memantine (Namenda)

Dietary Supplements

  • Coenzyme Q10
  • Feverfew
  • Butterbur (Petadolex)
  • Magnesium
  • Vitamin B2
  • 5-HTP (Check carefully with doctor because of interactions with meds including triptans and SSRIs)
  • Lecithin
  • Melatonin

References:

Thanks goes to the American Academy of Neurology Practice Guidelines, September, 2000, Nahib M., MD; Silberstein, Stephen D., Md, FACP; Frietag, Frederick G., DO; Gilbert, Thomas T., MD, Frishberg, Benjamin M., MD. "Evidence-Based Guidelines for Migraine Headache in the Primary Care Setting: Pharmacological Management for Prevention of Migraine."

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This consumer advocate website is protected by copyright 2002-2007 Askdocweb, Inc. All Rights Reserved. This is a layman's report on migraines and is not intended to replace discussions with a health care provider. Do not use the information on this forum as a substitute for your doctor's advice. Always consult your doctor before taking any drug and follow your doctor's directions. Source material: Food and Drug Administration, Medline, Physician's Desk Reference, and the largest community of people in the world, those who are concerned about side effects and healthcare.
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