Which medications in the drug class Antidepressants, SSRIs are used in the treatment of Childhood Migraine Variants?

Updated: Nov 19, 2019
  • Author: Wendy G Mitchell, MD; Chief Editor: Stephen L Nelson, Jr, MD, PhD, FAACPDM, FAAN, FAAP, FANA  more...
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Antidepressants, SSRIs

Sumatriptan and other serotonin agonists stimulate serotonin 5-HT1 receptors, producing a direct vasoconstrictive effect. Serotonin agonists help establish the diagnosis, but they never should be used for hemiplegic migraine. Some triptans have slightly different pharmacokinetics or adverse effect profiles, but all have substantially the same mechanism as sumatriptan. None has been adequately evaluated in children.

Sumatriptan succinate (Imitrex, Alsuma, Sumavel DosePro)

Sumatriptan is the first of the antimigraine agents that directly affect 5-HT1 receptors. A selective agonist for serotonin 5-HT1 receptors in cranial arteries, it suppresses inflammation associated with migraine headaches. The nasal form has been demonstrated to have some efficacy in adolescents with migraine; other forms have no proven efficacy in children, though uncontrolled reports suggest some efficacy.

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