A positive way out of migraine

Frequently asked questions

ABOUT MIGRAINE


ABOUT IMIGRAN RECOVERY


ABOUT MIGRAINE

What is migraine?
A migraine is more severe than a headache. Typically it is characterised by a throbbing headache on one side of the head accompanied by nausea and vomiting, and a sensitivity to light and sound. Symptoms of migraine can last up to 3 days and sufferers can experience many attacks a year.
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How big a problem is migraine?
A migraine is a truly disabling condition that can cause a huge amount of suffering. It impacts the lives of nearly 6 million adults in the UK. That is about 15% of the adult population. Up to half a million working days are lost due to migraine each week.
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What causes migraine?
Migraine is thought to be due to a widening of the blood vessels in the head. This stimulates the associated sensory nerves, which trigger pain and inflammation. The brain chemical, serotonin, has a big part to play in this process. It has been found that serotonin levels drop during migraine. This causes the widening of the brain blood vessels and the stimulation of the sensory nerves.
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What are the main symptoms of migraine?
Signs that a migraine is coming on include:
Tiredness, changes in mood or food cravings.
"Aura" typically affects vision, with symptoms such as flickering lights, zig-zag lines or blind spots. Symptoms of migraine vary between sufferers but can include:
Bad, throbbing one sided headache
Sensitivity to light (called photophobia)
Sensitivity to sound (called phonophobia)
Feeling sick (nausea) and/or vomiting
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What are common migraine triggers?
There are many different triggers however these vary between sufferers. Some common triggers include:
Diet: e.g. chocolate, cheese, red wine, coffee, tea & skipping meals
Female hormones: periods, the Pill
Sleep: either too much or too little sleep
Emotional: stress or relaxation after a stressful time
Physical: heavy exercise
Environment: weather changes, bright lights, flashing lights, noise, strong smells
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What are triptans?
Triptans are migraine specific treatments that act on the root cause of migraine to stop an attack. They are designed to act like serotonin in the brain. As a consequence, triptans reverse the widening of the blood vessels, and switch off the stimulation of the nerve endings causing the migraine, so relieving the pain and related symptoms. With Imigran Recovery, this class of drugs is available over the counter from your pharmacist.
Contains Sumatriptan. Always read the label
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ABOUT IMIGRAN RECOVERY

Why did GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare switch the drug used in Imigran Recovery from prescription only medication (POM) to over the counter (OTC)?
Many migraine sufferers don't visit their GP, so making Imigran Recovery available from the pharmacy has opened up access to more people. Imigran Recovery contains sumatriptan, a medicine used to treat over 800 million migraines worldwide since launch. The availability of this product represented a major step forward in over the counter migraine treatment.
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How does Imigran Recovery work?
Imigran Recovery works on the root cause of migraine by reducing the painful widening of blood vessels in the head. The result is that Imigran Recovery can stop the four most common migraine symptoms in their tracks; headache, sensitivity to light and sound and nausea.
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How effective is Imigran Recovery?
Imigran Recovery is highly effective; just one tablet can bring relief from migraine, and treating the attack early gives the best chance of recovery. And it’s fast. Headache relief can start in just 30 minutes and most sufferers can get complete relief of the migraine headache and the ability to return to normal daily activities in two hours.
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Why is Imigran Recovery different to other migraine treatments?
Unlike a painkiller it is specifically designed to treat migraine and can relieve the four most common symptoms of a migraine; headache, sensitivity to light and sound and nausea.
Headache relief can start in only 30 minutes and sufferers can get complete relief of the migraine headache, and the ability to return to normal daily activities in two hours. For sufferers that could be the difference between hours spent in bed, or being able get on with their lives.
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Is Imigran Recovery safe?
Imigran Recovery contains sumatriptan, the first triptan to be developed for migraine. Since the launch of sumatriptan as a prescription medicine over a decade ago, it has been used to treat 800 million migraines worldwide, equivalent to one migraine every second. It is well tolerated and has a well-established safety profile.
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Who is eligible for Imigran Recovery?
Adults aged between 18 and 65 who have a stable and established pattern of migraine and who do not get satisfactory relief from painkillers. Pharmacists will diagnose customers using a Migraine Questionnaire. This process will take place whether or not the migraine sufferer has been previously diagnosed by a GP.
Individuals not suffering from migraine will be offered appropriate alternative OTC medications, e.g. painkillers. Those with certain medical conditions, interacting drugs and / or symptoms not consistent with that of a migraine will be referred to their GP for further consultation or recommended alternative treatments.
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What age range is Imigran Recovery suitable for?
Imigran Recovery is suitable for adults aged 18-65.
The safety and effectiveness of sumatriptan in children has not yet been established. Childhood migraine should always be managed under the care of a GP. Experience of the use of sumatriptan in adults aged over 65 years is limited.
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How will the pharmacist determine if I am suitable for Imigran Recovery?
The pharmacist will determine your eligibility for Imigran Recovery by following the Migraine Questionnaire that has been developed in conjunction with key opinion leaders in the field of migraine. The Migraine Questionnaire is designed to diagnose whether a patient is suffering from a migraine and determine the presence of any circumstances under which Imigran Recovery is not recommended, e.g. in those with risk factors for heart disease or with certain medical conditions such as high blood pressure.
The questionnaire can be downloaded here and completed prior to going into your pharmacy to save time, or filled out in the pharmacy itself.
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How long will it take to complete the Migraine Questionnaire?
Each consultation is a unique process tailored to the individual needs of the potential migraine sufferer. However, it is estimated that an average consultation will take no more than 8 minutes.
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Why do I need to complete a Migraine Questionnaire?
Many medicines available in pharmacy have a pharmacy-only status - this means that they cannot just be picked up off the shelf but instead require guidance from the pharmacist.
The Migraine Questionnaire is an essential part of the pharmacy diagnosis of migraine and recommendation process, which reflects the everyday process healthcare professionals use to identify migraine and decide on suitable treatment options.
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Will I need to fill in a Migraine Questionnaire each time I want to buy Imigran Recovery?
Once you have completed the Migraine Questionnaire and if you are suitable for Imigran Recovery, you will be supplied with a "treatment card", which can be shown to the pharmacist the next time you request Imigran Recovery. This may exempt you from having to complete the questionnaire again, unless your symptoms or medical history have changed or the pharmacist requests that another questionnaire is completed. You should always inform your pharmacist of any changes to your symptoms or medical history.
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What questions will I be asked in the Migraine Questionnaire?
Questions cover the following areas:

  • Personal details, e.g. age, whether pregnant/breast feeding etc.

  • Personal migraine experience

  • Medical history e.g. whether you have high blood pressure, liver or kidney disease etc.

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Where can I buy Imigran Recovery?
Imigran Recovery is conveniently available over the counter from your pharmacy. You will need to complete a short Migraine Questionnaire with your pharmacist in order to determine your suitability for Imigran Recovery. The questionnaire can be downloaded here and completed prior to going into your pharmacy to save time, or filled out in the pharmacy itself.
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How many tablets are available in a pack of Imigran Recovery?
Imigran Recovery is available over the counter in tablets containing sumatriptan 50 mg in a 2-tablet pack. It comes with a convenient carry case that can fit into a handbag, briefcase or pocket enabling sufferers to treat at the first signs of migraine headache.
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What dose of Imigran Recovery should I take for an attack?
One tablet should be taken as soon as possible at the first signs of a migraine headache. Just one tablet can bring headache relief and treating the attack early gives you the best chance of recovery. The second tablet can be taken after two hours if the symptoms start to come back. No more than two tablets should be taken in 24 hours. No more than two tablets should be taken for the same attack. If the first tablet does not provide any relief a second tablet should not be taken. If someone gets no relief at all from Imigran Recovery, it may mean that he/she does not have a migraine and he/she should see their doctor.
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When should I take Imigran Recovery?
One tablet is usually enough to stop migraine. Early treatment provides the best chance of stopping a migraine, so a tablet should be taken as soon as you are certain that you have a migraine headache, rather than just a 'typical' headache (but no sooner than this). Imigran Recovery can still treat migraine symptoms effectively, even if taken later in an attack. Imigran Recovery is fast acting, with noticeable benefits on migraine headache starting in half an hour.
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Will I suffer any side effects with Imigran Recovery?
As with any medicine, there are occasionally side effects with Imigran Recovery. All medicines should be taken in accordance with the instructions. As with any medicine, reading the patient information leaflet is important. If you are unsure about anything, please consult your doctor or pharmacist.
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What does Imigran Recovery cost?
Imigran Recovery costs £7.99 for a 2-tablet pack, which comes with a convenient carry case that can fit into a handbag, briefcase or pocket enabling sufferers to treat at the first signs of migraine headache. This pack contains enough Imigran Recovery to treat up to two attacks.

What is the difference between Imigran and Imitrex?
Imitrex is the US brand name equivalent to Imigran. Imitrex is only available in US. Both products are made by GlaxoSmithKline. Both contain the drug sumatriptan.
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Migraine Information and FAQ's