Optimizing triptan therapy in clinical practice

Carlo Lisotto and Giorgio Zanchin

Migraine is a chronic neurological disorder characterized by episodic attacks of headache and associated symptoms. The pathophysiology of migraine is not completely understood. The goals of treatment include reducing the intensity and duration of acute attacks, minimizing the frequency of attacks and headache-related disability, and maximizing health-related quality of life. Acute medications are needed by all migraine sufferers for symptomatic treatment and, for the majority of patients who have infrequent attacks, are the only therapy required. Triptans, serotonin 5‑HT1B/1D receptor agonists, as well as revolutionizing the treatment of migraine, also stimulated groundbreaking research that provided insights into

the anatomy, physiology and molecular pharmacology of migraine. The selection of a triptan for a patient depends upon the stratification of the patient’s migraine attack by peak intensity, time to peak intensity, level of associated symptoms, time to associated symptoms and concomitant

treatments that might cause drug interactions.