New FDA-approved medication could provide relief for migraine sufferers

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Do you suffer from painful migraines? There may be some new relief available locally.

The FDA has approved a new injection, Aimovig, to help the nearly 20 percent of people who suffer from migraines.

But is it worth the cost? A monthly dose can cost $575. That adds up to $6,900 a year.

“I think insurance companies will probably present it as something to be used when other things don’t work right," said Steven Arkin, a neurologist at Saint Luke’s Hospital. "So I think things might develop over time. If people have success with it, they might be able to go first line with it eventually."

Unlike other migraine medications, Arkin said this one is only taken once a month. More importantly, Arkin said it has far fewer side effects compared to other medications.

“The main advantage is that it is a different medication," he said. "It is a totally different mechanism. So when I have been talking over the last couple decades, I’ve had just a short collection to choose from. Once that list is exhausted, I really do not have elsewhere to go except to choose different combinations."

Nikki Krueger has struggled with migraines every day for almost 13 years.

“You can’t brush your hair. You cannot shower because your head feels like it is on fire. The pain is just out of control,” she said.

Krueger has tried more than 150 different medications to fix the problem. Nearly five years ago, she started to see Arkin and plans to try the new migraine injection.

“I want to find something that makes me fully functional again. I really do. If this is it, great,” Krueger said.