Polytherapy for the prophylaxis of chronic migraine: An Italian survey

D. D'Amico, M. Curone, V. Tullo, A. Proietti Cecchini, E. Mea, G. Bussone

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Chronic migraine (CM) represents an important medical issue, due to morbidity, high disability, presence of comorbidities, and medication overuse (MO). The prophylaxis of CM has not been extensively explored so far. Patients with CM are often treated with two or more compounds, although there is no clear evidence that polytherapy may be superior to monotherapy. We evaluated the percentage of prescription of polytherapy for the prophylaxis of CM in a clinical sample. We examined the charts of 98 CM patients admitted to our Headache Center for inpatient withdrawal program to stop MO. Results showed that only one drug for prophylaxis was prescribed in 20.4% cases, two or more drugs in 79.6%, with 63.3% of the total sample falling in the group "true polytherapy", i.e. all the drugs prescribed on daily basis were given to treat CM, and not only to treat concomitant conditions. In more than 60% cases a combination of drugs indicated for migraine prophylaxis and drugs only indicated for other conditions (mainly for psychiatric disorders) was prescribed. Our survey indicates that polytherapy may be rather common in CM, and suggests that comorbidities may strongly influence treatment choices.

Original languageEnglish
JournalNeurological Sciences
Issue numberSUPPL. 1
Publication statusPublished - May 2011


  • Chronic migraine (CM)
  • Comorbidity
  • Medication overuse (MO)
  • Polytherapy
  • Prophylaxis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Dermatology

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