New Drug Approved for Migraine Attacks

Nancy Harris Bonk Health Guide
  • The FDA has approved a new prescription medication for the acute treatment of Migraine attacks, Cambia, developed by Kowa Pharmaceuticals America (KPA). Cambia is a combination of diclofenac (brand name Voltaren), a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) and potassium bicarbonate. In clinical trials, Cambia was shown to be effective for adults who have Migraine with and without aura.


    Cambia is a powder that's mixed with water for form a liquid medication. Clinical studies indicate Cambia may be a good first line medication choice for acute Migraine attacks due to its quick onset of pain relief. Patients and doctors alike agree that fast relief time is very important, and the trials show pain relief time in 15 to 30 minutes.  In clinical trials, Cambia was shown effective in treating photophobia (intensified sensitifity to light), phonophobia (intensified sensitivity to sound), and nausea during a Migraine attack. Other symptoms during a Migraine may include dizziness, fatigue, and visual disturbances. Continue reading more about the possible phases of a Migraine attack and their associated symptoms in this article: Anatomy of a Migraine.

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    KPA obtained exclusive U.S. and Canadian marketing rights for Cambia™ from Applied Pharma Research (APR), a Swiss drug delivery and drug development company, in 2005. The product is currently marketed by Novartis Pharma AG, via a license from APR, under the trademarks Voltfast or Catafast in several European countries. KPA and APR have been granted patents that cover Cambia™ through 2026. KPA and APR are currently in the final stages of negotiations with a marketing partner and expect Cambia™ to launch in 4th quarter 2009.


    Over 36 million Americans suffer from Migraine disease. It is the 12th most disabling disorder in the country. Continued clinical trials such as this research funded by the Migraine Research Foundation (see MRF Research Study Published in JAMA) will get us closer to more treatment choices and more answers to our Migraine disease concerns.





    Press Release. "FDA Has Approved CambiaTM, Potassium Diclofenac Powder for Oral Solution for the Treatment of Acute Migraine Attacks with or without Aura, Originally Developed by APR Applied Pharma Research SA Using the Patented Dynamic Buffering Technology."  Applied Pharma Research. Balerna, Switzerland. June 22, 2009.


    Doctors Guide News. "FDA Approves Diclofenac Potassium Oral Solution for Migraine." DGNews. June 22, 2009.


    Press Release. "FDA Approves CambiaTM for Migraine." Kowa Pharmaceuticals America, Inc. Montgomery, Alabama. June 22, 2009.


    © Nancy Bonk, 2009.

    Last updated June 26, 2009.

Published On: June 26, 2009