Supplementation with Riboflavin (Vitamin B2) for Migraine Prophylaxis in Adults and Children: A Review

Int J Vitam Nutr Res. 2015;85(1-2):79-87. doi: 10.1024/0300-9831/a000225.

Abstract

Background and aim: Migraine is a unilateral and pulsating headache associated with nausea, photophobia, vomiting, and sensitivity to light. Low vitamin B2 can lead to mitochondrial dysfunction and may have an effect on migraine pathogenesis. The aim of the present study was to carry out a review of existing evidence regarding the effects of riboflavin (vitamin B2) supplementation on migraine prophylaxis in adults and children.

Material and methods: We searched the databases of PubMed, Science Direct, Google Scholar, and Springer between 1990 and December 2013. Key words included vitamin B2, riboflavin, migraine, vomiting headache, and prevention. We limited our search to human studies in the English language. Review articles and abstracts from symposiums and conferences were excluded.

Results: Finally, eleven eligible articles were found: seven involved studies with adults and four involved studies with children. The results indicated that supplementation with vitamin B2 in adults can play a positive role in reducing the frequency and duration of migraine attacks with no serious side effects.

Conclusions: It seems that riboflavin is a safe and well-tolerated option for preventing migraine symptoms in adults, however, there is insufficient evidence to make recommendations regarding vitamin B2 as an adjunct therapy in adults and children with migraine.

Keywords: adult; child; migraine; riboflavin.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Dietary Supplements
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Migraine Disorders / prevention & control*
  • Riboflavin / administration & dosage*
  • Riboflavin / adverse effects

Substances

  • Riboflavin