Twenty common migraine patients received a one sided frontotemporal application of nitroglycerin (10 patients) or placebo ointment (10 patients) in a double blind study. Early onset migraine attacks were induced by nitroglycerin in seven out of 10 patients versus no patient in the placebo group. Subsequently 20 migraine patients, who developed an early onset attack with frontotemporal nitroglycerin, received the drug in a second induction test at other body areas. No early onset migraine was observed. Thus the migraine-inducing effect of nitroglycerin seems to depend on direct stimulation of the habitual site of pain, suggesting that the frontotemporal region is of crucial importance in the development of a migraine crisis. This is not consistent with a CNS origin of migraine attack.
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