Erenumab vs topiramate in migraine


Erenumab, a calcitonin-gene related peptide receptor (CGRP) inhibitor, is more tolerable and effective than topiramate for treating patients with migraine, according to data from almost 800 patients in the first head-to-head trial of its kind.

The findings suggest that erenumab may help overcome longstanding issues with migraine medication adherence, and additional supportive data may alter treatment sequencing, reported lead author Uwe Reuter, MD, professor at Charité Universitätsmedizin Berlin, and colleagues.

The phase 4 HER-MES trial aimed to address this knowledge gap by enrolling 777 adult patients with a history of migraine. All patients reported migraine with or without aura for at least 1 year prior to screening. At baseline, most patients (65%) reported 8-14 migraine days per months, followed by 4-7 days (24.0%), and at least 15 days (11.0%). No patients had previously received topiramate or a CGRP-targeting agent.

After 24 weeks, 95.1% of patients were still enrolled in the trial. Discontinuations due to adverse events were almost four times as common in the topiramate group than the erenumab group (38.9% vs. 10.6%; odds ratio [OR], 0.19; confidence interval, 0.13-0.27; P less than .001). Efficacy findings followed suit, with 55.4% of patients in the erenumab group reporting at least 50% reduction in monthly migraine days, compared with 31.2% of patients in the topiramate group (OR, 2.76; 95% CI, 2.06-3.71; P less than.001).

Erenumab significantly improved monthly migraine days, headache impact test (HIT-6) scores, and short form health survey version (SF-35v2) scores, including physical and mental components (P less than .001 for all).

Safety profiles aligned with previous findings.