Rimegepant approved for preventative use in Scotland

Rimegepant approved for use in NHS Scotland for the acute and preventative treatment of migraine

11th September 2023

Today it has been announced by the Scottish Medicines Consortium (SMC) that Rimegepant (Vydura) has been approved for preventive treatment of episodic migraine in adults who have at least four migraine attacks per month in Scotland. This is incredibly welcome news.

In May 2023 it was approved for acute use in Scotland and  is currently being considered for acute use in England.

Medication overuse headache

Rimegepant is one of a new class of migraine medication developed to treat migraine, which are known as the gepants. It is the first in this class to be appraised for use on the NHS. As opposed to conventional acute treatments such as triptans, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), and other painkillers, the gepants don’t seem to cause medication overuse headache.

Medication overuse headache is a significant problem for people with migraine. A survey of 1,800 people with migraine that we ran in 2019 found that migraine medication had caused medication overuse headache in a third of people (34%). We believe that Rimegepant is an important opportunity to help those who have medication overuse headache and prevent others from developing it.

A safe migraine treatment for people with cardiovascular disease and those not responding to current migraine treatments

People with cardiovascular disease will be able to take Rimegepant, as unlike another class of acute migraine medication, the triptans, it does not constrict or tighten blood vessels. This makes it a safe alternative to triptans in treating migraine acutely. There are also a significant number of patients not responding to the current gold standard triptans.

“In addition to physical symptoms such as pain, migraine can have a detrimental impact on ability to work, attend education, socialise and plan activities. The mental health impact can be significant. Rimegepant (Vydura) can be easily taken as a tablet and brings a valuable new option to those who live with the condition. We hope patients who will benefit from it will be able to access it quickly.”

Rob Music, Chief Executive of The Migraine Trust