Friday, May 23, 2008

Getting the Correct Information on Migraine Drug Treximet

I was just over at Migraine News Network reading Raingem's interesting article, "Treximet or TrickThem-et?" She provides us with good information about this new Migraine medication and points us to something:

Debbie who runs Down The Rabbit Hole blog:, has noticed something interesting - a little subversive disinformation campaign as propagated by sloppy journalists and uninformed patients alike. There are plenty of little news blips if you care to search for them that say pretty much the same as this little article: New Drug Could Be Best Migraine Medicine On Market.
I find all this ironic. Two days ago I was reading Migraine news. It seemed that article after article was bullshit, misinformation, unreliable and lies. So when I stumbled on this Treximet article Migraine Sufferers - This New Drug Might Help You on The Real Cougar Woman I started to get mad. This article was filled with inaccurate and misleading information and I couldn't take it anymore, So I did something I usually don't do. I wrote a letter to the author, pointed out the incorrect information and provided her with the correct information. I told her that she didn't have to post my comments but I would like her to fix the stuff that was wrong. She ended up posting my comments instead.

You can read them below
or read them in context on The Real Cougar Woman. Since my comments were removed two days after being approved, here's part of the article including the incorrect information in red:

...This month, a new drug is expected to land in pharmacies that combines two existing migraine drugs. It promises to offer relief without the fear of addiction. It's called treximet.

Apparently it works by combining two existing drugs that control two different aspects of migraine headaches. First, it prevents blood vessels in the head from narrowing. Second, it blocks the brain from releasing chemicals that signal pain.

If you are a migraine sufferer ask your doctor if treximent is for you.

My comments in their entirety follows:

Treximet is NOT the combination of two existing Migraine drugs. It combines a Migraine medication with an NSAID. The Migraine medication, Sumatriptan, is a Triptan (technical name is selective serotonin receptor agonists), and is the ingredient found in Imitrex. The NSAID is naproxen sodium, the same ingredient found in the over-the-counter medicine Aleve. This is used for many other conditions. You say "It promises to offer relief without the fear of addiction". Even though it's not very common, NSAID addiction can occur. Additionally, using these products separately and/or together can cause a serious condition for Migraine sufferers called Medication Overuse Headache also known as Rebound Headaches.

I know that all medications including vitamins and supplements have side effects but your article makes it sound as if there are no risks associated with using this medication. Yes, there are benefits of both medications but it should be noted that NSAIDs can be FATAL. It increases heart attack and stroke risk and can be harmful to the liver, kidneys and stomach. NSAIDs can also cause ulcers, bleeding, perforation and other gastrointestinal effects.

You're incorrect to say that this medication prevents blood vessels in the head from narrowing. Treximet does NOT prevent blood vessels in the head from narrowing. During a Migraine attack the blood vessels in the head DILATE. Sumatriptan causes vasoconstriction. This means that this medication does the exact opposite of what you said it does and constricts, or narrows, the blood vessels. You can verify this information on MAGNUM, the same site you cited

Treximet is misspelled "treximent" in the last sentence.

Using the phrase "Migraine Headache" is also inaccurate. Migraine is a genetic neurological disease. Migraines are NOT headaches. Headache is just one symptom of a Migraine and there are many other symptoms such as, aura, nausea, vomiting, photophobia, phonophobia and vertigo. Some people don't have headaches during a Migraine attack so calling it a "Migraine Headache" is misleading.

I'm not asking you to publish my comment, I'd just like you to fix the misinformation.


rain gem said...

Hi Pam!

Thank you for stopping by my little site. Sorrys I didn't greet you proper on mdhabloggers. Got swamped in things a bit.

Good catch with The Real Cougar Woman's article. Things like that are going on pretty much all the time; it's fun to bust tails once in a while :P



Debbie said...

Thanks for the comment on my site. As for Cougar Woman, that was a great catch! I went on her site today and the whole post is gone. I wonder if we can do a blog campaign and catch other bloggers. However, that might take all of our time.

Phil Johnson, a blogger on Pyromaniacs made a telling statement. "the scope of the exposure and correction of that person's error needs to be commensurate with the scale on which the heresy was broadcast. Likewise, if [an uninformed journalist or blogger]... uses the blogosphere to spread error that has the potential to confuse or corrupt people ... [It is] appropriate to confront that person's error in the same arena where he spread it."

Therefore, in my opinion, we as fellow bloggers are resposible to correct other bloggers who dispense incorrect information about migraine disease.

Pam, thanks for doing this.

Pam said...

Hi Debbie!
The post is back up again and is still not corrected.

Bravo to Phil Johnson! He nailed it. Pam

MaxJerz said...

Pam, thanks for posting this and thanks for making the attempt to correct the author. You're right - as is Phil Johnson - that we all need to make the attempt to correct what misinformation we see out there. Of course, this is a huge task, but every little bit is a step along the way.


Eileen said...

You go girl!

I'm just catching this now as I did not realize that you were not in my google reader! Shocking! Well you are there now my friend!

Good catch with this one! The more we educate, the more the general public will understand that migraines are NOT just headaches!

Great job!!!!

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