A nasal spray used to treat migraine headaches can be effective in cluster headaches as well, researchers said. The nasal spray zolmitriptan targets nerves that carry pain signals, Dr. Peter Goadsby, professor of clinical neurology at University College London said.
Cluster headaches are not as common as migraines and affect one in 1,000 people. Researchers tested 92 patients with cluster headaches. In the final analysis 69 patients were included. These patients were assigned to randomly receive either a placebo, 5 milligrams of the nasal spray, or 10 milligrams of the nasal spray.
61% patients who received 10-milligram dosage said they felt better after 30 minutes compared to 42 percent and 23 percent of those who took the smaller dose and the placebo. It's very convenient and very safe," said study co-author Goadsby. "It's good news for patients."
The study appears in the November issue of Archives of Neurology.