Abdominal migraine: prophylactic treatment and follow-up.


Journal Article

BACKGROUND: Abdominal migraine is a syndrome characterized by recurrent stereotypic episodes of paroxysmal abdominal pain and nausea and/or vomiting with wellness between episodes. It is often associated with a positive family history of migraine and no other apparent underlying disease. The purpose of this study was to report in patients diagnosed with abdominal migraine the outcome, the effect of prophylactic treatment, and the duration of treatment. METHODS: The records of 53 patients who underwent treatment after a diagnosis of abdominal migraine were retrospectively reviewed. Responses to treatment were graded as excellent (cessation of recurrent abdominal pain), fair (persistence of symptoms but milder and less frequent), or poor (no response). Follow-up data were available in 38 patients. Twenty-four patients were treated with propranolol and 12 with cyproheptadine. Four were not treated because of mild and infrequent symptoms. RESULTS: Among the children treated with propranolol, 18 (75%) had an excellent response, 2 (8%) had a fair response, and 4 (17%) had no response. In those treated with cyproheptadine, 4 (33%) had an excellent response, 6 (50%) had a fair response, and 2 (17%) had no response. Patients were instructed to continue medication for 6 months or until cycles had stopped. However, 11 of 24 patients (46%) in the propranolol group took medication for less than 6 months and the remaining patients from 6 months to 3 years. Six patients in the cyproheptadine group (50%) took medication less than 10 months and the remaining patients for 10 months to 3 years. CONCLUSION: Patients with abdominal migraine may benefit from prophylactic treatment with propranolol or cyproheptadine.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Worawattanakul, M; Rhoads, JM; Lichtman, SN; Ulshen, MH

Published Date

  • January 1999

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 28 / 1

Start / End Page

  • 37 - 40

PubMed ID

  • 9890466

Pubmed Central ID

  • 9890466

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0277-2116

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1097/00005176-199901000-00010


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States