HealthWatch: Mitigating migraine – new medication is a game changer

Health Watch

MIAMI, Fla. (Ivanhoe Newswire)— It’s estimated more than 38 million Americans suffer from migraine. The pain can be so debilitating it can put a patient down for days. Now a new type of medication is giving hope to those who have dealt with the pain for years.

Patient Cherise Irons exclaimed to Ivanhoe, “I’ve been attack- free for 259 days!”

Cherise Irons is counting the days she hasn’t dealt with a crippling migraine.

“The pressure starts in my neck area and it’s just building and building,” Irons illustrated.

The intense pain started 10 years ago after a bad car accident, even causing her to black out.

Irons recalled, “I black out, I wake up and I’m like where am I?”

Teshamae Monteith, MD, Chief of the Headache Division and associate professor of Clinical Neurology at University of Miami Miller School of Medicine explained, “Migraine is a primary headache disorder; it’s a recurring condition so it’s chronic.”

For patients like Cherise, very few treatments gave her any relief, until now.

“For the first time ever there’s migraine specific treatments for migraine prevention. We’re talking about a way to target migraine based on the pathophysiology,” elaborated Dr. Monteith.

A new class of drugs called CGRP monoclonal antibodies work by blocking the signaling pathway that causes migraine.

“So, if you’re able to block that either by targeting the protein itself or the receptor then you can potentially prevent migraine,” Dr. Monteith explained.

Cherise takes fremanezumab, brand name AJOVY, a once a month injection she gives herself.

“The goal is to have less painful migraine attacks, less frequent migraine attacks,” concluded Dr. Monteith.

Cherise says the new medication has been a game changer!

“I got my life back!” Irons exclaimed.

She is now studying to become a minister and started a walking group at her church.

She shared, “It’s called In Motion, On Purpose.”

She credits her faith for getting her through.

The new class of migraine drugs was approved by the FDA in 2018 and most insurance companies will cover the cost. Dr. Monteith says the only side effects reported so far are injection site reaction such as redness or swelling. For more information go to https://umiamihealth.org/en/Treatments-Services/Neurology/Migraine. For more on Cherise’s spiritual journey you can follow her on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/ironsgroupllc/.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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