Real-World Study Supports Effectiveness of Erenumab for Migraine Treatment

April 26, 2021
Jennifer Barrett

Real-world data comparing erenumab with oral preventive medications was presented at the American Academy of Neurology’s 73rd Annual Meeting.

Real-world data point to the effectiveness of erenumab (Aimovig; Amgen and Novartis) in reducing migraine-specific acute medication use (AMU) and health care resource utilization (HCRU), according to new findings presented at the American Academy of Neurology’s 73rd Annual Meeting, which was held virtually April 17 to 22, 2021.1

Study investigators examined the real-world effectiveness of erenumab compared with oral preventive medications (OPM) among patients with migraine. Erenumab is a first-in-class calcitonin gene-related peptide receptor antagonist that is approved in the United States for the treatment of migraine in adults.

For the study, the investigators obtained data from the US Optum’s de-identified Clinformatics Data Mart Database, and included patients initiating erenumab between May 1, 2018 and September 30, 2019, and those initiating OPM between May 1, 2015 and April 30, 2018. OPM included anticonvulsants, antidepressants, antihistamines, angiotensin II receptor blockers, beta blockers, calcium channel blockers, and ergots. Investigators examined any AMU, HCRU, and a composite end point of emergency room visits, in-patient visits, and outpatient visits with AMU during a 6-month post-index period compared with propensity score-matched data.

From the 2343 matched erenumab- and OPM-treated patients, the findings showed that migraine-specific AMU and HCRU were significantly lower for erenumb users compared with OPM users at 6 months. Additionally, a significantly lower mean number of events was observed for the erenumab group (0.40 vs 0.57; rate ratio: 0.71 [95% CI: 0.65-0.77], P<0.0001). A similar significantly lower proportion of patients with any of the 3 events was observed (30.5% vs 40.7%; odds ratio: 0.64 [95% CI: 0.56-0.73], P<0.0001), according to the findings.

Overall, the investigators concluded that the magnitude of reductions in AMU and HCRU was significantly greater in erenumab-treated patients than OPM-treated patients.

“These real-world data highlight that erenumab significantly reduces migraine-specific AMU and HCRU among migraine patients, hence significantly reduces burden of the disease as well as overall cost,” they wrote.


  1. Tepper S, Fang J, Zhou L, Vo P, et al. Compare effectiveness of erenumab versus oral preventive medications among migraine patients: A US claims database study. Presented at: American Academy of Neurology 73rd Annual Meeting; April 17-22, 2021; Virtual. Accessed April 22, 2021.