Alpha-dihydroergocryptine and predictive factors in migraine prophylaxis

G. Micieli, A. Cavallini, S. Marcheselli, F. Mailland, L. Ambrosoli, G. Nappi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: A double-blind, crossover study was carried out to compare the efficacy of α-dihydroergocryptine mesylate (10 mg twice daily) vs propranolol (40 mg twice daily) in the prophylaxis of migraine without aura, and to identify possible predictors of therapeutic response by evaluating the symptomatological profile of individual migraine attacks and the autonomic cardiovascular response to noradrenergic and dopaminergic (cold pressor, bromocriptine) tests. Patients and methods: Forty migraineurs (10 males, 30 females) were randomized according to a two-period (3-month), two-treatment, crossover design. Efficacy was assessed using quantitative data recorded in the patient's headache diary. Data were evaluated using the Wallenstein's method. Results: Both drugs showed a significant reduction in all the efficacy variables (headache attacks, days with headache, analgesic consumption) with no difference between treatments. Neither a bromocriptine test, nor a cold pressor test nor the symptomatological profile of individual migraine attacks differed between the two groups of migraine patients. Ten patients experienced at least one adverse drug reaction during the first period of the crossover design, 5 being treated with α-dihydroergocryptine and 5 with propranolol. Conclusions: It is concluded that α-dihydroergocryptine is an effective medication for migraine prophylaxis. The biochemical tests and the type of psychological profile cannot be used to predict drug response.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)144-151
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2001


  • Bromocriptine test
  • Cold pressor test
  • Dihydroergocryptine
  • Migraine prophylaxis
  • Propranolol

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Toxicology


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