The American Headache Society Consensus Statement: Update on integrating new migraine treatments into clinical practice

Headache. 2021 Jul;61(7):1021-1039. doi: 10.1111/head.14153. Epub 2021 Jun 23.


Objective: To incorporate recent research findings, expert consensus, and patient perspectives into updated guidance on the use of new acute and preventive treatments for migraine in adults.

Background: The American Headache Society previously published a Consensus Statement on the use of newly introduced treatments for adults with migraine. This update, which is based on the expanded evidence base and emerging expert consensus concerning postapproval usage, provides practical recommendations in the absence of a formal guideline.

Methods: This update involved four steps: (1) review of data about the efficacy, safety, and clinical use of migraine treatments introduced since the previous Statement was published; (2) incorporation of these data into a proposed update; (3) review and commentary by the Board of Directors of the American Headache Society and patients and advocates associated with the American Migraine Foundation; (4) consideration of these collective insights and integration into an updated Consensus Statement.

Results: Since the last Consensus Statement, no evidence has emerged to alter the established principles of either acute or preventive treatment. Newly introduced acute treatments include two small-molecule calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) receptor antagonists (ubrogepant, rimegepant); a serotonin (5-HT1F ) agonist (lasmiditan); a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (celecoxib oral solution); and a neuromodulatory device (remote electrical neuromodulation). New preventive treatments include an intravenous anti-CGRP ligand monoclonal antibody (eptinezumab). Several modalities, including neuromodulation (electrical trigeminal nerve stimulation, noninvasive vagus nerve stimulation, single-pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation) and biobehavioral therapy (cognitive behavioral therapy, biofeedback, relaxation therapies, mindfulness-based therapies, acceptance and commitment therapy) may be appropriate for either acute and/or preventive treatment; a neuromodulation device may be appropriate for acute migraine treatment only (remote electrical neuromodulation).

Conclusions: The integration of new treatments into clinical practice should be informed by the potential for benefit relative to established therapies, as well as by the characteristics and preferences of individual patients.

Keywords: acute; consensus; migraine; preventive; principles; treatment.

MeSH terms

  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized / therapeutic use
  • Behavior Therapy*
  • Calcitonin Gene-Related Peptide / immunology
  • Calcitonin Gene-Related Peptide Receptor Antagonists / therapeutic use
  • Consensus*
  • Electric Stimulation Therapy
  • Humans
  • Migraine Disorders / diagnosis
  • Migraine Disorders / drug therapy
  • Migraine Disorders / prevention & control
  • Migraine Disorders / therapy*
  • Peptide Fragments / immunology
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic*
  • Receptor, Serotonin, 5-HT1F
  • Receptors, Serotonin
  • Serotonin Receptor Agonists / therapeutic use
  • Societies, Medical*
  • Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation
  • United States


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized
  • Calcitonin Gene-Related Peptide Receptor Antagonists
  • Peptide Fragments
  • Receptors, Serotonin
  • Serotonin Receptor Agonists
  • calcitonin gene related peptide (1-7)
  • Calcitonin Gene-Related Peptide