Triptan medications have helped a lot of people with both migraine and cluster, and as the technology and research improves, more people who can benefit are able to use them.
A new delivery system for zolmitriptan is being tested under the drab name of M207, but also using the magnificent name The Adhesive Dermally Applied Microarray (ADAM) Zolmitriptan System.
Most of that simply means that it’s a sticker or patch. “Microarray” actually refers to a system of tiny needles – a word that is understandably avoided. Actually, from what I’ve heard so far, most patients do not experience pain from this patch (some of you who have been in the trials may want to comment).
How does it work? You take a small unit and apply the small round patch to your arm (it kind of reminds me of one of those bingo daubers – but of course it applies a sticker in this case). The patch gets the medication into your system very quickly – which is the main point.
For both migraine and cluster headache, you want the medication to get into your system as efficiently and quickly as possible. Many people have not benefited from zolmitriptan simply because they’ve taken it orally – and the medicine hasn’t gotten to where it needs to go on time – if ever.
So far the results have been good. Many patients have experienced full relief within an hour, more than half within three hours. This is with a dose of 3.8mg.
These results tell us that most people should benefit, but more importantly a few people should experience significant relief very quickly.
We’re talking about cluster headache, even though that is not the focus of the current trials. Finding better ways to administer this medication should help people with cluster as well, so we’ll watch for future developments.
There will be a new trial of the ADAM System for Zolmitriptan opening soon for adults with episodic migraine. The trial will investigate safety over 12 months, and see how the patch does in treating other symptoms such as nausea, photophobia and phonophobia.
If you’re interested in the trial, find out more here: A Study to Evaluate the Long-Term Safety of M207 in the Acute Treatment of Migraine (ADAM)