- A Visual Guide to Migraine Headaches Slideshow
- Headache and Migraine Triggers Slideshow
- Take the Migraines Quiz
- What is erenumab (Aimovig)? How does it work (mechanism of action)?
- What are the uses for erenumab?
- What are the side effects of erenumab?
- What are the dosing instructions for erenumab?
- Which drugs or supplements interact with erenumab?
- Is erenumab safe to take during pregnancy or while breastfeeding?
What is erenumab (Aimovig)? How does it work (mechanism of action)?
Erenumab (Aimovig) is a new medication used for preventing migraine attacks. It received the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) approval on May 17, 2018. It belongs to a new class of drugs called calcitonin gene-related peptide receptor (CGRP-R) antagonist. CGRP-R is a chemical produced by the body that acts on blood vessels in the brain which are believed to be responsible for the development of migraines. Erenumab reduces the number of monthly migraine attacks by blocking CGRP-R receptors on blood vessels.
What are the uses for erenumab?
Erenumab is used for preventing migraine headache attacks in adults. It does not have any contraindications.
What are the side effects of erenumab?
The most common side effect of erenumab are reactions to the injection site, for example, injection site:
Less common side effects include:
The needle shield within the white cap of the erenumab prefilled autoinjector and gray needle cap of the erenumab prefilled syringe contains dry natural rubber, which may cause allergic reactions in people who are sensitive to latex.
There are no warnings for erenumab.
Quick GuideMigraine or Headache? Migraine Symptoms, Triggers, Treatment
What are the dosing instructions for erenumab?
Erenumab is injected under the skin once a month by the patient or a caregiver. Erenumab is injected under the skin in the abdomen, thigh, or upper arm. It should not be injected where the skin is tender, bruised, red, or hard.
- The recommended dosage of erenumab is 70 mg once monthly.
- Some patients may benefit from a higher dosage of 140 mg once monthly.
- The 140 mg dose is given as two 70 mg injections.
A missed dose of erenumab should be administered as soon as possible then treatment should be administered monthly from the date of the last dose.
Erenumab is available as 70 mg/mL in a single-dose prefilled SureClick®autoinjector Injection or a single-dose prefilled syringe.
Which drugs or supplements interact with erenumab?
Drugs or supplements that may interact with erenumab have not been identified. Erenumab does not affect the breakdown of other drugs. Erenumab did not interact with sumatriptan (Imitrex, Imigran,Treximet) or an oral contraceptive in laboratory studies.
Is erenumab safe to take during pregnancy or while breastfeeding?
- The use of erenumab during pregnancy has not been properly studied. It is not known whether erenumab can affect the developing baby or the birthing process.
- There is no information about whether erenumab is present in human milk, its effects on the breastfed infant, or its effects on milk production.
Erenumab, brand name Aimovig, is newly FDA approved injectable drug used for the prevention of migraine headache attacks. Erenumab belongs to a new class of drugs called calcitonin gene-related peptide receptor (CGRP-R) antagonist. Erenumab has few side effects, and may include constipation, or pain, redness, and itching at the injection site. Erenumab has no known drug or supplement interactions. Erenumab is available in doses of 70mg and 140 mgs injections that are given once a month by the patient or caregiver. There are no reliable studies on erenumab about its safety during pregnancy or while breastfeeding. Erenumab was approved by the FDA on May 17, 2018.
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Treatment & Diagnosis
Medications & Supplements
- gabapentin (Neurontin, Gralise, Horizant, Fanatrex FusePag) Side Effects, Dosage, and Abuse
- Nonsteroidal Antiinflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs)
- Ibuprofen (Advil) vs. Naproxen (Aleve): Comparison of Differences
- naproxen (Aleve, Anaprox, Naprelan, Naprosyn)
- Corticosteroids (Systemic, Oral and Injectable)
- Beta Blockers (Drug Class, List of Brand and Generic Names)
- ibuprofen (Advil, Children's Advil/Motrin, Medipren, Motrin, Nuprin, PediaCare Fever, and others)
- Acetaminophen vs. Ibuprofen for Pain (Differences in Side Effects and Dosage)
- Predinsone Side Effects (Adverse Effects)
- metoprolol (Lopressor, Toprol XL)
- Calcium Channel Blockers (CCBs)
- atenolol, Tenormin
- Corticosteroids vs. NSAIDs
- Beta Blocker Side Effects (Adverse Effects)
- valproic acid, divalproex, Depakote, Depakote Sprinkle, Depakote ER, Depakene, Depacon, Stavzor
- hydrocodone and ibuprofen, Vicoprofen
Migraines and Headaches Resources
Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
erenumab (Rx). Medscape.
Top Aimovig erenumab Related Articles
Abdominal Migraines in Children and AdultsAbdominal migraine in adults and children is a variant of migraine headaches. Abdominal migraine in children generally occurs in children who have a family history of migraines. Causes of abdominal migraine is not known. Symptoms of abdominal migraine include acute, severe, midline abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, paleness, and inability to eat. Abdominal migraine is diagnosed through patient history, family history, and ruling out other medical causes. Treatment of abdominal migraine include tricyclic antidepressants and triptans.
barbiturates-oralBarbiturates are a class of drugs prescribed to treat headaches, insomnia, and seizures. Examples of barbiturates include:
- belladonna and phenobarbital (Donnatal),
- butalbital/acetaminophen/caffeine (Esgic, Fioricet),
- butalbital/aspirin/caffeine (Fiorinal Ascomp, Fortabs),
- butabarbital (Butisol),
- amobarbital (Amytal),
- pentobarbital (Nembutal), and
- secobarbital (Seconal).
Beta blockers are a class of drugs that block beta-adrenergic substances such as adrenaline (epinephrine), a key agent in the "sympathetic" portion of the autonomic (involuntary) nervous system and activation of heart muscle. By blocking the action of the involuntary nervous system on the heart, beta blockers relieve stress on the heart.
Beta blockers are used for the treatment of irregular heart rhythms, chest pain, heart attack, hypertension, migraine headaches, social phobias, tremors, and glaucoma.
Common side effects of beta blockers are nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, diarrhea, and weight gain if you are taking medicine for diabetes (type 1 and type 2). There are other important side effects and serious adverse effects of this drug class that include, blurred vision, insomnia, hair loss, disorientation, CNS system effects, and serious heart problems.
Beta blockers interact with several other drugs, for example, chlorpromazine (Thorazine), clonidine (Catapres), Phenobarbital, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) including aspirin, and diabetes medications, including insulin.
Examples of generic and brand names available for beta blockers in the US include acebutolol (Sectral), atenolol (Tenormin), bisoprolol (Zebeta), metoprolol (Lopressor, Lopressor LA, Toprol XL), nadolol (Corgard), timolol (Blocadren). Talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other medical professional if you have questions about beta-blockers.
If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist. In the US -Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
Celebrities With MigrainesSee how celebrities cope with the pain caused by migraines. Learn their methods used to prevent and relieve migraine pain.
corticosteroids-oralOral and injectable systemic corticosterois are steroid hormones prescribed to decrease inflammation in diseases and conditions such as arthritis (rheumatoid arthritis, for example), ulcerative colitis, Crohn's disease, asthma, bronchitis, some skin rashes, and allergic or inflammatory conditions that involve the nose and eyes. Examples of systemic corticosteroids include hydrocortisone (Cortef), cortisone, prednisone (Prednisone Intensol), prednisolone (Orapred, Prelone), and methylprednisolone (Medrol, Depo-Medrol, Solu-Medrol). Some of the side effects of systemic corticosteroids are swelling of the legs, hypertension, headache, easy bruising, facial hair growth, diabetes, cataracts, and puffiness of the face.
Gabapentin (Neurontin, Gralise, Horizant, Fanatrex FusePag) is a drug prescribed for the treatment of seizure disorders, nerve damage from shingles and postherptic neuralgia. Off label uses of gabapentin include treatment for:
- Substance abuse withdrawal
- RLS (restless legs syndrome)
- Diabetic neuropathy
- Hot flashes
Common side effects include:
- Fluid retention (edema)
Adverse reactions and serious side effects include:
- Motion sickness
- Blurred vision
- Viral infection
Gabapentin is available as capsules as 100, 300, and 400 mg; tablets as 100, 300, 400, 600, and 800 mg; and as a solution of 250 mg/5 ml. The exact dosage depends upon the condition being treated. It is not known if this drug is safe to take during pregnancy. It is secreted in breast milk, so mothers who are breastfeeding should consult their OB/GYN or other health care professional and only use this gabapentin if the benefits outweigh the risks to the fetus. Gabapentin is not a narcotic (opioid), however, it does share signs and symptoms associated with drug abuse and addiction. Patients taking this drug may experience withdrawal symptoms like goosebumps, sweating, vomiting, and nausea. Gabapentin was approved by the FDA in 1993.
HeadacheHeadaches can be divided into two categories: primary headaches and secondary headaches. Migraine headaches, tension headaches, and cluster headaches are considered primary headaches. Secondary headaches are caused by disease. Headache symptoms vary with the headache type. Over-the-counter pain relievers provide short-term relief for most headaches.
Migraine TriggersPainful headaches can ruin your productivity and quality of life. But what triggers headaches and migraines? Learn some surprising causes of headaches and migraines plus how to find relief.
Headache Remedies Food Triggers
Headaches are a common complaint for many people. There are many types of headaches such as migraine, tension, cluster, and the general run of the mill headache. These 17 natural home remedies, for example, exercise, meditation, hydration, Yoga, caffeine, essential oils such as lavender and butterbur, herbs, and vitamins like magnesium
Foods also can trigger headaches. Histamine releasing foods (for example, preserved foods, canned meats and beans, alcohol, and shellfish) and tyramine-rich foods, for example, aged cheeses and meats, beer, red wine, and foods high in salt also can trigger headaches.
Headaches QuizIf you're plagued with headaches, our Headaches Quiz may help you identify causes, triggers, symptoms, and treatments for headache pain caused by different types of headaches such as migraines, sinus, cluster, tension, or stress.
Ibuprofen vs Naproxen
Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) and naproxen (Aleve) are drugs available without a prescription that relieve mild to moderate pain, inflammation, and fever. Ibuprofen and naproxen belong to the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug class or NSAIDs. NSAIDs like ibuprofen and naproxen block chemicals in the body called prostaglandins that promote pain, inflammation, and fever. Blocking prostaglandins in the body reduce pain, inflammation, and fever.
Since both ibuprofen and naproxen are NSAIDs, they have similar side effects and adverse effects. Ibuprofen and naproxen may increase the risk of blood clots, heart attack, and stroke. Common side effects of both drugs include heartburn, constipation, nausea, diarrhea, abdominal pain, dizziness, headaches, drowsiness, and tinnitus (ringing in the ears). Other serious side effects include edema, high blood pressure, and heart failure.
Ibuprofen and naproxen are available in a variety of forms and strengths. Check with your doctor or pharmacist about questions you have in regard to NSAIDs.
MigraineMigraine headache is a type of headache associated with a sensitivity to light, smells, or sounds, eye pain, severe pounding on one side of the head, and sometimes nausea and vomiting. The exact cause of migraine headaches is not known.
Triggers for migraine headaches include certain foods, stress, hormonal changes, strong stimuli (loud noises), and oversleeping.
Treatment guidelines for migraines include medicine, pain management, diet changes, avoiding foods that trigger migraines, staying hydrated, getting adequate sleep, and exercising regularly. Prevention of migraine triggers include getting regular exercise, drinking water daily, reducing stress, and avoiding trigger foods.
Migraine and Seizures Symptoms and Signs
Migraines are a type of headache and seizures are the main symptom of epilepsy. Migraine headaches and seizures are two different neurological problems that have similar signs, symptoms, and auras, for example, sensitivity to light (photophobia) and sound, irritability, nausea, and vomiting.
Symptoms unique to migraine and migraine auras are water retention, problems sleeping, appetite changes, and talkativeness. Symptoms unique to seizure and seizures auras are depression, a feeling of heaviness, a feeling that a seizure is approaching, and depression.
Many of the symptoms of migraine and seizures are the same, however, seizures do not cause migraines; however, people who have seizures are twice as likely to have migraines and vice-versa. People who have migraines are twice as likely to have seizures, and people with seizures are twice as likely to have migraines; however, one condition does not cause the other.
Migraine and Stroke Symptoms
Migraine headache is a type of headache in which the exact cause is not known; however, they may be inherited, and certain foods and environmental factors can trigger and may contribute them. A stroke (brain attack) happens when a blood vessel in the brain leaks, bursts, or becomes blocked, which can be caused by many other health problems.
Both migraines and strokes can can cause severe head pain (migraine pain usually is only on one side of the head). Migraine aura symptoms may mimic or feel like a stroke or mini-stroke (transient ischemic attack, TIA) because they have similar symptoms and signs like severe headache, numbness in the legs, feet, arms, hands, or face, nausea, vomiting, and dizziness. Other migraine aura symptoms include vision problems like flashing lights or blind spots in one eye. The main difference between migraine headache and stroke symptoms and signs is that a migraine headaches usually come on gradually while a stroke symptoms come on suddenly and unexpectedly.
A migraine may cause photophobia (sensitivity to light and sound). Migraine triggers include hormonal changes, alcohol, insomnia, caffeine, stress, anxiety, bright lights, loud noises, strong odors, aspartame, MSG, and changes in the weather. Symptoms of a stroke that do not occur with migraines include confusion, speech, vision, and balance problems.
You can have a migraine headache and a stroke at the same time, but migraines do not cause strokes. However, in certain individuals with migraines with auras there may be related to a higher risk of stroke.
Stroke is a medical emergency. If you have stroke symptoms, call 9-1-1 and get medical attention immediately.
Migraine HacksA migraine can be more than just a whopping headache. Try these self-care tips for relief before and after it hits.
Migraines SlideshowWhat does a migraine feel like? Discover the difference between headaches and migraines. Learn to spot migraine symptoms early, how to identify your triggers, and get more information on migraine medications and treatments.
Migraine vs Headache Whats the Difference
Headaches are the most common reason why a person goes to the doctor or other healthcare professional for treatment. There are different types of headaches, for example, migraine, tension, and cluster headaches. The most common type of headache is tension headache. Migraine is much less common. There are few similarities between migraine and other headaches, for example, the severity of the pain can be the same, mild, moderate, or severe; and they can occur on one side or both sides of the head. However, there are many differences between migraine and other types of headaches. Migraine headaches also have different names, for example, migraine with aura and menstrual migraine.
Symptoms of migraine that usually aren't experienced by a person with another type of headache are:
- Worsens with mild exercise
- Debilitating pain
- Eye pain
- Throbbing head pain
Migraine trigger (examples)
- Mild exercise
- Strong smells
- Certain foods like red wine, aged cheese, smoked meats, artificial sweeteners, chocolate, alcohol, and dairy products.
- Menstrual period
- Changes in barometric pressure
Untreated migraine attacks usually last from 4 to 72 hours, but may last for weeks. Most headaches resolve within 24-48 hours. Doctors don't know exactly what causes migraine headaches; however, other headaches like tension headaches have more specific triggers and causes. Additional tests usually are required to diagnose migraine from other types of headaches, diseases, or other medical problems. Most headaches can be treated and cured with home remedies like essential oils, massage, and over-the-counter pain medication like acetaminophen (Tylenol) and NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) like naproxen (Aleve, Anaprox, Naprosyn) or ibuprofen (Advil, Midol, Motrin). Most headaches resolve with OTC and home remedy treatment, while your doctor may need to prescribe medication to treat your migraines.If you have the "worst headache of your life," seek medical care immediately.
naproxenNaproxen (Aleve, Anaprox, Naprelan, Naprosyn) is in the class of drugs called nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Naproxen is prescribed for the treatment of mild to moderate pain, inflammation, and fever. Side effects, drug interactions, and pregnancy information should be reviewed prior to taking this medication.
Nonsteroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs and UlcersNonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are prescribed medications for the treatment of inflammatory conditions. Examples of NSAIDs include aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen, and more. One common side effect of NSAIDs is peptic ulcer (ulcers of the esophagus, stomach, or duodenum). Side effects, drug interactions, warnings and precautions, and patient safety information should be reviewed prior to taking NSAIDs.
Nonsteroidal Antiinflammatory DrugsNonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are a class of drugs are used to treat inflammation, mild to moderate pain, and fever. Examples of the most common NSAIDs include: aspirin salsalate (Amigesic), diflunisal (Dolobid), ibuprofen (Motrin), ketoprofen (Orudis), nabumetone (Relafen), piroxicam (Feldene), naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn,) diclofenac (Voltaren), indomethacin (Indocin), sulindac (Clinoril), tolmetin (Tolectin), etodolac (Lodine), ketorolac (Toradol), oxaprozin (Daypro), celecoxib (Celebrex).