Ubrelvy & Reyvow Now Available

Good news…. we now have 2 new medications for the acute treatment of migraine.  Both are oral tablets and represent alternatives for those who have unmet acute migraine treatment needs. The triptans, first introduced in the United States in 1992, have been the mainstay of treatment for years. They include Imitrex, Maxalt, Zomig, Relpax, Axert, Amerge, and Frova. Most are generic and inexpensive. Are the new medications better? For some patients, they may be.

The goals for acute migraine treatment are to be headache free and back to full function in 2 hours after taking the acute medication like Imitrex. If your migraine treatment is not consistently bringing you to headache freedom in 2 hours you would be a candidate for Ubrelvy or Reyvow. In addition, if you are putting up with “triptan sensations” like neck/chest tightness, flushing, fatigue, nausea, or worsening of the headache before it gets better, you may tolerate Ubrelvy or Reyvow better. Lastly, if you have a contraindication to the triptans due to coronary artery disease, peripheral vascular disease, or multiple cardiac risk factors, these new medications would be safer as neither Reyvow nor Ubrelvy cause vasoconstriction.

Ubrelvy (Ubrogepant) is the first oral “gepant” to be FDA approved. It is an oral CGRP (calcitonin gene-related peptide) antagonist and works by blocking at the CGRP receptor site. In binding to this receptor site, it prevents the CGRP peptide that is released during migraine to attach and thereby, prevents the pathway of migraine. Numerous studies have shown that CGRP gets elevated during migraine. To learn more go to www.scienceofmigraine.com. Ubrelvy does not cause vasoconstriction, is very well tolerated in clinical trials, and so far, does not appear to cause medication overuse headache. It is available as a 50 mg & a 100 mg tablet and may be repeated in 2 hours. Ubrelvy comes in a package of 10 and for patients with commercial insurance, is available for $10 per 10 tablets per month. To learn more, go to www.Ubrelvy.com and to access the savings program, go to www.Ubrelvy.com/savings. If you are up-to-date on your visit with us, we may be willing to send in a Rx for Ubrelvy prior to your next visit. If interested, please email us at info@ocmigraine.org.

Reyvow (Lasmiditan) works differently than Ubrelvy. It is a 5-HT1F serotonin receptor agonist and is referred to as a “ditan” Reyvow binds to the 5-HT1F receptor activating it, which then inhibits pain pathways and inhibits release of neuropeptides like CGRP. It is not associated with vasoconstriction or medication overuse headache. However, it crosses into the central nervous system (CNS) and as such, can cause drowsiness and sedation. As a result, it is a controlled medication and is Schedule 5 by the DEA. Schedule 5 represents medications that have the least addictive potential. Reyvow comes as a 50 and 100 mg strength tablet and is dosed as 50 mg, 100 mg or 200 mg as a single dose in a 24-hour period. There is a driving restriction for 8 hours due to the potential sedation and dizziness seen in clinical trials.  Reyvow may be useful as a rescue option when an individual is home for the day with a moderate to severe migraine and does not plan on driving for 8 hours. As headache specialists, we are hopeful that Reyvow can take the place of Butalbital products including Fiorinal & Fioricet as well as Hydrocodone Products such as Vicodin & Norco. To learn more go to www.Reyvow.com. Reyvow has a savings program for those with commercial insurance. Using the savings program, an individual should be able to get 8 tablets per month for zero copay. Information about the savings program is available at www.Reyvow.com.  Because Reyvow is a controlled medication, please make an appointment with us if you are interested in trying. We need to carefully review the potential side effects with you.

Other medications will be coming soon including Rimegepant, another oral gepant for acute migraine. In 1-2 years, Atogepant, a 3rd oral gepant, should be available and will be for the prevention of migraine.

This is truly an exciting time in migraine. With new treatment options, comes new hope for a brighter future for all individuals with migraine.

We look forward to working with each of you to optimize your headache treatment plan.


Dr. Susan Hutchinson & Dr. Molly Rossknecht

February 12, 2020

What are some good websites for learning about new treatments for migraine that are not overly promotional?

Orange County Migraine & Headache CenterOur office recommends the following websites as good resources to learn more about new treatments for migraine:

Our practice website www.ocmigraine.org is also a good source for learning about new migraine treatments and we try to update regularly.


To make an appointment, please call 949-861-8717.

I heard that a new migraine medication called Reyvow has been approved. What is it?

Reyvow is a new migraine medication FDA approved for acute migraine treatment. Another name for it is Lasmiditan. Although FDA approved, it cannot be prescribed until the DEA decides what category to put it in as it can cause dizziness and sedation. There will be some sort of warning on not driving for a certain number of hours after taking. Despite the sedation & dizziness as possible side-effects, it does not cause any vasoconstriction like the triptans and may be useful for patients who cannot take the triptans due to cardiac issues and for those for whom the triptans are ineffective or poorly tolerated. We expect Reyvow to be available by February 2020.


To make an appointment, please call 949-861-8717.

What is Ubrogepant? I heard it would be available soon.

Ubrogepant is an oral tablet for the acute treatment of migraine.  It targets the calcitonin gene related peptide (CGRP) receptor and prevents CGRP from binding. This blocks the migraine process. Unlike the current monthly anti-CGRP injections, this is for acute migraine treatment. It may be a great option for those dissatisfied with their current acute treatment. Ubrogepant will be an oral tablet 50 or 100 mg and can be repeated in 2 hours for a migraine attack. Unlike Reyvow, another new migraine medication, Ubrogepant does not cause drowsiness or dizziness. We think it will be available by January 2020.


To make an appointment, please call 949-861-8717.

OC Migraine Wins “Miles For Migraine” Award!

On Saturday, November 9th, 2019, Orange Country Migraine & Headache Center participated in the Miles for Migraine Walk and Run in San Diego, CA. Sixteen OCM staff members and patients participated! Additionally, Orange County Migraine & Headache Center took home the prize for raising the most donations of any team. Over $3,000!

Thank you to everyone who participated and/or donated for this very worthy cause, in which proceeds go to migraine and headache research.


OCM Migraine Team (to the left)


Dr. Susan Hutchinson

The Racers

What is in a Toradol Injection? Can it help rescue a severe migraine?

Toradol is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication and is part of the category commonly referred to as the “NSAIDs”.  Other examples of NSAIDs include Motrin, Ibuprofen, Cambia, Aleve, Naprosyn, and Diclofenac, and Celebrex. The generic name for Toradol is Ketorolac. It can be given orally, intramuscular, intravenously, or nasally.  In its oral form, there is no evidence that it works any better than the oral NSAIDs. However, when given non-oral as an injection, nasal delivery, or IV, it works faster and has better bioavailability. We commonly offer Toradol 60 mg IM in our office as a way to rescue a prolonged or severe migraine. Unlike a narcotic or Benadryl injection, it does not cause sedation so a patient can safely drive home after receiving the Toradol injection. Studies at Harvard by Dr. Rami Burstein have shown that a migraine can progress to a stage in which oral triptans will not work but injectable Toradol can work. To determine if Toradol in any of its forms would be an appropriate addition to your migraine “toolbox” please set up an appointment at our office.


To make an appointment, please call 949-861-8717.

What is Nerivio? Is it available?

Nerivio is a non-invasive neurostimulator device that has received FDA approval for the acute treatment of migraine in adults. The device is wrapped around the upper arm similar to a blood pressure cuff. It is turned on and the intensity is adjusted via an app on a smart phone device. There are no wires or cords so a patient can be hands free to go about their normal activity while the headache is being treated. The recommended treatment period is 45 minutes for a migraine attack. The expected time frame for availability is October 2019. We are one of a limited number of headache centers in the United States that will have demo units for patients to try in our office. It is anticipated that the first month of treatment will be free.  It is very exciting to have a new non-invasive treatment option for migraine. To learn more go to https://theranica.com


To make an appointment, please call 949-861-8717.

Miles for Migraine Event San Diego, Saturday November 9th

Please join us for this fun walk/run event at beautiful De Anza Cove in the San Diego Area. You have the option of a 2-mile walk or a 5K or 10K Run. The event is to raise awareness of migraine and raise funds to advance migraine understanding and research.

The address for this event is 3000 Mission Bay Drive, San Diego, CA. It starts at 9 am. Race packets can be picked up the morning of the event or the afternoon before. For specific details on race packet pick-up, see the website.

Our office has formed a team called OC Migraine. Feel free to join our team in this inaugural event. For those joining our team, we will have logo shirts printed with our team name and we will gather together before and after our walk/run for photos. Dr. Hutchinson has signed up for the 10K and her office manager, Norma, the 2-mile walk.

The goal for our team is to raise $2000. Dr. Hutchinson and Norma have already made personal donations to our fund. Please join us & help us meet our goal.

To learn more about Miles for Migraine, the website is www.milesformigraine.org

If you are unable to participate but would like to donate the link is https://raceroster.com/events/2019/22686/miles-for-migraine-san-diego-2019/pledge/participant/15

Any size donation is appreciated. Please make a difference in lifting the burden of migraine!

For any questions, contact our office at 949-861-8717 or email us at info@ocmigraine.org


Orange County Migraine & Headache Center

September 5, 2019

Can I try one of the new CGRP monoclonal antibody injections if I am getting Botox every 12 weeks for my migraines? Botox helps but I would like to try one of these new CGRP injections and see if they can work together to better help with migraine prevention?

In the clinical trials with all three CGRP injections (Aimovig, Ajovy, Emgality) patients had to be off Botox for 4 months before receiving CGRP injections. This exclusion was not due to safety concerns; rather, the trials were designed to see how well migraines would respond to CGRP by itself or with an oral preventive and not while still receiving Botox. One of the concerns is that insurance companies may not approve both. Both are relatively expensive treatments. We have patients in our practice who are doing both but we are encouraging them to try CGRP by itself at some point as CGRP injections may work so well for migraine prevention that Botox is not needed. Fortunately, there are wonderful savings programs for all 3 CGRP injections for commercial insurance patients so now is a good time to set up an appointment and see what preventive regimen best for your migraines.


To make an appointment, please call 949-861-8717.