Imitrex manufacturer GlaxoSmithKline funded two new studies conducted in Europe and North America.
"These data offer hope to the large portion of women who experience migraines during menstruation," says researcher Robert Nett, MD, medical director at San Antonio's Texas Headache Associates, in a news release.
In the studies, women took 100 mg of Imitrex, 50 mg of Imitrex, or a placebo within an hour of symptom onset, so long as the pain was still mild. Overall, the majority of women who took Imitrex were pain free two hours later, compared with only a quarter of those who'd taken a placebo. Women who took Imitrex at the first signs of an impending migraine were least likely to develop a full-blown attack -- the drug staved off the usual severe pain, nausea, and light sensitivity.
"Our research shows Imitrex, taken when migraine pain is mild, is effective in providing relief of pain and the associated symptoms of menstrually associated migraine," says Nett.
In this study, the researchers defined menstrually associated migraine as a new migraine attack beginning two to three days after a woman's period began.