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Aspirin for acute migraine headaches in adults
  1. Varo Kirthi1,
  2. Sheena Derry2,
  3. R Andrew Moore2,
  4. Henry McQuay2
  1. 1Royal College of Physicians, London, UK
  2. 2Pain Research, Nuffield Department of Clinical Neurosciences (Nuffield Division of Anaesthetics), University of Oxford, Oxford, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Varo Kirthi, Clinical Fellow to the President, Royal College of Physicians, 11 St Andrew Place Regent's Park, London NW1 4LE, UK; varo.kirthi{at}

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Clinical bottom line

A single oral dose of aspirin 900 mg or 1000 mg is more effective than placebo at resolving migrainous headache pain at 2 h and providing relief that is sustained over 24 h.1 Co-administration of metoclopramide 10 mg may provide additional pain relief and a greater reduction in associated symptoms, especially nausea.1


Migraine is a common, disabling, headache disorder, with considerable social and economic impact on the individual and society. Despite experiencing a high level of disability, most migraine sufferers do not seek professional …

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  • Funding There was no funding support for this summary paper. The original Cochrane review was funded internally by Pain Research Funds (UK) and externally by NHS Cochrane Collaboration Programme Grant Scheme (UK) and NIHR Biomedical Research Centre Programme (UK).

  • Competing interests VK has no interests to declare. RAM and HJM have consulted for various pharmaceutical companies. RAM and HJM have received lecture fees from pharmaceutical companies related to analgesics and other healthcare interventions. RAM, HJM and SD have received research support from charities, government and industry sources at various times. None had any input into this paper, nor the original Cochrane review, at any stage.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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