Migraine? Try A Big Old Dose Of Aspirin

Our healthy friends at Consumer Reports Health have an interesting article today about a new study that shows that a single high dose of aspirin (up to 1000 mg) can work as well as a lower-dose prescription drug.

Take it away, experts:

Overall, roughly 1 in 2 people (52 percent) who took a single dose of aspirin (900 mg or 1000 mg) rated their pain as having improved to mild or better within two hours. And 1 in 4 people (24 percent) said that their pain had completely disappeared. In comparison, only 1 in 3 people (32 percent) who took an inactive treatment (a placebo) said their pain had improved to mild or better, and 1 in 10 (11 percent) reported that their pain had disappeared. People who took aspirin were also more likely to see improvements in their nausea and sensitivity to light or sound.

But these findings may actually underestimate how well aspirin works. This is because many people take painkillers when they first get migraine symptoms, rather than waiting until their pain becomes moderate or severe, as occurred in these studies. Research suggests that taking painkillers early works better than waiting until the pain gets worse. So it could be that aspirin helps more migraineurs when it’s used early on.

The study didn’t look at what happens to people who take aspirin frequently for migraines but CRH notes that aspirin has been linked to stomach irritation. In addition, CRH says children and teenagers shouldn’t take aspirin for migraines or any other condition, as it can cause a rare but dangerous problem called Reye’s syndrome.

Have you tried this? Any luck with it?

Aspirin makes the grade for migraine relief [CRH]