Imitrex injections vs. Imitrex spray

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Posted by DJ ( on August 12, 2000 at 14:40:36:

Found this today..... interesting

Sumatriptan nasal spray (20 mg/dose) in the acute treatment of cluster headache.

Hardebo JE, Dahlof C.

Subcutaneous injection of sumatriptan is an effective treatment for attacks of cluster headache with a short onset of action. This open, randomized study evaluates
whether sumatriptan nasal spray at its highest commercially available dose (20 mg/dose) is equally effective. In 26 patients, four consecutive attacks were treated
alternately with nasal spray and subcutaneous injection. Treatment was given within 5 min of onset of pain, and the time interval for the start and completeness of
pain relief, provided these occurred within 15 min of administration, were recorded by the patient. After completion of the study, the patients were also asked to
indicate which treatment they preferred, based on efficacy, side effects, and handling of the preparation Forty-nine of the 52 treatments with injection resulted in
complete relief of pain within 15 min, with a mean of 9.6 min. The remaining three attacks were reduced by a mean of 86.7% at 15 min. Only 7 of the 52 treatments
with nasal spray in the nostril ipsilateral to pain resulted in complete relief within this time period, with a mean of 13.0 min. In 18 of these treatments pain was
reduced by a mean of 42.2% at 15 min, whereas no effect on pain was obtained at this time in the remaining 27 treatments. The effect was almost identical when
the nasal spray was administered in the nostril on the non-painful side. As an overall judgement, only 2 of the 26 patients preferred nasal spray to injection. We
conclude that sumatriptan nasal spray 20 mg/dose is less effective than subcutaneous injection in relieving pain in the great majority of cluster headache sufferers.

(Cephalalgia 1998;18:487-489)

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