New Migraine Medications
What are anti-CGRP medications like?
In the last two years major strides have been made in medications specifically for migraines. Most of us have used anti-epileptic and anti-depressants as maintenance medications along with muscle relaxers and different IV treatments. Now there is a new class of drug referred to as anti-CGRP's. So, what are they?
CGRP stands for calcitonin gene-related peptide. It's a protein released around the brain that upon release causes inflammation of the meninges, thus causing a migraine. An anti-CGRP helps create antibodies against a receptor that CGRP would bind to, therefore blocking it and blocking that migraine from happening.
I personally have tried two of these medications: Ajovy and Ubrevly. I am in no way a medical professional and cannot speak to right course of treatment, I am simply stating my personal experience with these medications.
I have been using Ajovy for roughly a year now and find it works incredibly well for me and has drastically reduced the number and intensity of both headaches and migraines.
It comes in a pre-filled syringe that is injected into any fatty part of the body, I use my stomach. It definitely is not comfortable always to inject, it burns if you push too fast.
Side Effects: I get itchy, very very itchy. So I take Benadryl both ahead of time and for a few days afterwards. In the first few injections I would get extremely nauseous and tired but that has gone away now. I have a notable increase in anxiety around the tie after the injection, which I have noticed is common among many users of any anti-CGRP. Ajovy also causes me to have visual aura, and migraine symptoms (cravings, light sensitivity, etc.) but no headache. I find that working out helps me deal with these side effects better.
I just was prescribed Ubrevly about a month and a half ago because my Botox injections were approved late by the insurance. It act like an abortive so I have been using it in replacement of my triptans which I absolutely loathe the side effects of. I find it generally starts to work in 30 minutes in that it lessens the pain intensity but, if I sleep and give it about 3 hours whatever was brewing is completely gone.
It is a pill which I LOVE because those melt-aways and auto injectors can be so tiresome.
The only side effects I have experienced with this is nausea and some tiredness. I do find that exercising helps with that tiredness but that is my body and rest might work better for others.
What has your experience with the new anti-CGRPs been?