Expanding access to triptans: Assessment of clinical outcome

Roger K. Cady, Jerome Goldstein, Stephen Silberstein, Márta Juhász, Karen Ramsey, Anthony Rodgers, Carolyn M. Hustad, Tony Ho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Objective. - To evaluate whether access to more liberal quantities of rizatriptan improves clinical outcome in patients with episodic migraine. Background. - Currently many pharmacy benefit programs limit the number of triptan tablets/injections per month based on perceived cost savings and the belief that too-frequent use of triptans may lead to medication overuse headache and headache chronification. Methods. - This observer-blind, randomized, parallel-group study enrolled 197 subjects with migraine with or without aura. Subjects completed a 3-month baseline period to establish migraine frequency and then were randomly assigned to receive 9 (formulary limit [FL]) or 27 (clinical limit [CL]) tablets of 10 mg rizatriptan orally disintegrating tablet (ODT) per month for 3 months. The primary endpoint was change in the mean number of migraine days from the baseline to treatment period. Results. - There was no statistically significant difference between the FL and CL groups in mean number of migraine days (FL-CL LS mean: -0.08 [-0.39, 0.23]; P =.613). Subjects in the CL group treated attacks at lower headache severity. No CL subjects were reported to have developed chronic migraine despite utilization of greater than 10 rizatriptan ODT tablets per month. Rizatriptan was generally well tolerated by both groups. Conclusion. - Providing a greater quantity of rizatriptan ODT 10 mg did not reduce the number of migraine days compared with providing 9 tablets per month for this population with episodic migraine with a frequency of 3-8 migraines per month. Regardless of quantity provided, rizatriptan was generally well tolerated.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1402-1413
Number of pages12
Issue number10
StatePublished - Nov 1 2009


  • Anticipatory behaviors
  • Migraine
  • Prescribing limits
  • Rizatriptan
  • Triptan tolerability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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