Lilly’s migraine survey identifies treatment weak points

Lilly’s OVERCOME observational study reveals inconsistent and sub-optimal treatment landscape for migraine

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INDIANAPOLIS—Eli Lilly and Co. have announced the upcoming presentation of data highlighting inconsistent and sub-optimal treatment patterns that people living with migraine experience across the U.S. healthcare landscape. These data are from the OVERCOME (Observational Survey of the Epidemiology, Treatment and Care of Migraine) study, which collected responses from more than 20,000 people living with migraine.
The study follows two U.S. population samples of 20,000 people with migraine for two years, following their enrollment. The first population sample began enrollment in 2018, with the second population sample to begin enrollment in 2020. In parallel, the study also includes two U.S. population samples of 10,000 people without migraine during the same enrollment periods, providing a unique perspective about how migraine is perceived by those who do not have the disease.
The OVERCOME study aims to further understand the burden of migraine and stigma experienced by people living with the disease, identify barriers to appropriate treatment of migraine, and assess how the introduction of novel treatment options may influence delivery of migraine care and outcomes.
The results of the OVERCOME study showed that people with migraine seek care in a variety of settings, with a significant portion seeking treatment in emergency and urgent care settings. The findings will be presented on Saturday, July 13, 2019, at the 61st Annual Scientific Meeting of the American Headache Society, taking place in Philadelphia.
“Living with migraine requires comprehensive and individualized management, much like other chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease. While there could be important reasons to go to an emergency department or urgent care clinic when experiencing a migraine attack, these settings should not usually be the primary source of care. They have a limited ability to provide the optimal, personalized ongoing management this neurological disease requires,” said Dawn C. Buse, Ph.D., clinical professor of Neurology at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, American Headache Society Board Member at Large and scientific advisor to the OVERCOME study. “These results revealed that more efforts are needed to help people with migraine access appropriate primary and specialist care.”
Among OVERCOME respondents with four or more migraine headache days per month (n=8,844), more than 60% reported seeking care during the last 12 months. Of this group, 1 in 3 (33.6%) sought care for migraine at an emergency department or urgent care clinic. Less than 5% of people seeking care at emergency departments, urgent care or retail clinics were prescribed migraine preventive medication, even though they may have been eligible for this type of treatment.
“The OVERCOME study updates our knowledge of patterns of migraine diagnosis and treatment, as a prelude to improving medical care for migraine,” noted Richard B. Lipton, M.D., department of Neurology, Albert Einstein College of Medicine and director of Montefiore Headache Center, Montefiore Health System. Lipton serves as a consultant and advisory board member, and has received honoraria from Eli Lilly and Co. Lipton also serves as chair of the OVERCOME Study Scientific Advisory Panel. 
“For people with frequent migraine, the high rates of treatment in the emergency/urgent care settings, coupled with the low rates of preventive treatment in this group, suggests an opportunity for better patient care through improved management of the disease. With the knowledge gained from the OVERCOME study, we should be better positioned to understand the issues and advance recommendations to close this and other gaps in the treatment of migraine,” continued Lipton.
The study authors recommend that more research be conducted to further understand whether improving consistency in migraine care across the healthcare landscape, and appropriately treating people with migraine in a specialist or primary care setting, will improve patient outcomes and reduce the need for emergency or urgent care.
“Migraine is a common, costly disease. It can rob people of their right to work, right to participate and right to live life more fully. It’s important that the challenges across the care landscape are addressed so that those living with migraine receive not only the appropriate diagnosis, but treatment and ongoing management,” stated Gudarz Davar, M.D., vice president, neurology development, Lilly Bio-Medicines.

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