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Crossover Comparison of Efficacy and Preference for Rizatriptan 10 mg versus Ergotamine/Caffeine in MigraineChristie S.a · Göbel H.b · Mateos V.c · Allen C.d · Vrijens F.e · Shivaprakash M.d
aOttawa Headache Centre, Ottawa, Canada; bKiel Pain Clinic, University of Kiel, Germany; cNeurological Department, Central Hospital of Asturias, Oviedo, Spain; dMerck & Co., Whitehouse Station, N.J., USA; eMerck Sharp & Dohme (Europe), Brussels, Belgium
Rizatriptan is a selective 5-HT1B/1D receptor agonist with rapid oral absorption and early onset of action in the acute treatment of migraine. This randomized double- blind crossover outpatient study assessed the preference for 1 rizatriptan 10 mg tablet to 2 ergotamine 1 mg/caffeine 100 mg tablets in 439 patients treating a single migraine attack with each therapy. Of patients expressing a preference (89.1%), more than twice as many preferred rizatriptan to ergotamine/caffeine (69.9 vs. 30.1%, p ≤ 0.001). Faster relief of headache was the most important reason for preference, cited by 67.3% of patients preferring rizatriptan and 54.2% of patients who preferred ergotamine/caffeine. The co-primary endpoint of being pain free at 2 h was also in favor of rizatriptan. Forty-nine percent of patients were pain free 2 h after rizatriptan, compared with 24.3% treated with ergotamine/caffeine (p ≤ 0.001), rizatriptan being superior within 1 h of treatment. Headache relief at 2 h was 75.9% for rizatriptan and 47.3% for ergotamine/caffeine (p ≤ 0.001), with rizatriptan being superior to ergotamine/caffeine within 30 min of dosing. Almost 36% of patients taking rizatriptan were pain free at 2 h and had no recurrence or need for additional medication within 24 h, compared to 20% of patients on ergotamine/caffeine (p ≤ 0.001). Rizatriptan was also superior to ergotamine/caffeine in the proportions of patients with no nausea, vomiting, phonophobia or photophobia and for patients with normal function 2 h after drug intake (p ≤ 0.001). More patients were (completely, very or somewhat) satisfied 2 h after treatment with rizatriptan (69.8%) than at 2 h after treatment with ergotamine/caffeine (38.6%, p ≤ 0.001). Recurrence rates were 31.4% with rizatriptan and 15.3% with ergotamine/caffeine. Both active treatments were well tolerated. The most common adverse events (incidence ≧5% in one group) after rizatriptan and ergotamine/caffeine, respectively, were dizziness (6.7 and 5.3%), nausea (4.2 and 8.5%) and somnolence (5.5 and 2.3%).
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