The European Medicines Agency (EMA) have approved Eli Lilly's migraine treatment, galcanezumab (brand name Emgality▼) for use in the EU.
Emgality was shown to be more effective than placebo at reducing the number of days of migraine, although the size of the effect is limited particularly for patients with chronic migraine.
The side effects seen with Emgality are considered manageable with most being mild or moderate in severity.
The European Medicines Agency therefore decided that Emgality’s benefits are greater than its risks and it can be authorised for use in the EU.
You can follow developments with Emgality by using our Medicines Tracker service which provides users with updates about the medicines they are interested in.
About migraine (source NHS)
A migraine is usually a moderate or severe headache felt as a throbbing pain on 1 side of the head.
Many people also have symptoms such as feeling sick, being sick and increased sensitivity to light or sound.
Migraine is a common health condition, affecting around 1 in every 5 women and around 1 in every 15 men. They usually begin in early adulthood.
There are several types of migraine, including:
- migraine with aura – where there are specific warning signs just before the migraine begins, such as seeing flashing lights
- migraine without aura – the most common type, where the migraine happens without the specific warning signs
- migraine aura without headache, also known as silent migraine – where an aura or other migraine symptoms are experienced, but a headache does not develop
Some people have migraines frequently, up to several times a week. Other people only have a migraine occasionally.
It's possible for years to pass between migraine attacks.
About Emgality (source EMA)
Emgality is a medicine used to prevent migraine in adults who have migraines at least 4 days a month. It contains the active substance galcanezumab.
A substance called CGRP has been shown to be involved in the development of migraine by widening blood vessels in the brain. The active substance of Emgality, galcanezumab, is a monoclonal antibody (a type of protein) designed to attach to and block CGRP, thereby helping blood vessels to return to their normal size. This will stop the symptoms of migraine.
Emgality was first made available in the EU in 2019. It is manufactured by Eli Lilly.
European Medicines Agency website page for Emgality
NHS website for migraine
Contains public sector information licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.0.
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EMA information for Emgality
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Reporting of suspected adverse reactions
Reporting suspected adverse reactions (side effects) after authorisation of the medicinal product is important. It allows continued monitoring of the benefit/risk balance of the medicinal product. Healthcare professionals or patients are asked to report any suspected adverse reactions via the Yellow Card Scheme at yellowcard.mhra.gov.uk or search for MHRA Yellow Card in the Google Play or Apple App Store.
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