133 The effectiveness of riboflavin (vitamin b2) in preventing migraine episodes in the paediatric population: a comprehensive review

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Purpose of studyWhile prescription medications such as triptans and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are available and used to treat migraine headaches, they have many side effects and remain inconvenient as prescription medication. Information on use of riboflavin for migraine prophylaxis in children is scant. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of a non-prescription alternative, riboflavin in prevention of migraine episodes in children and adolescents.Methods usedA search of Pubmed, Google Scholar, and the review of reference list of articles was conducted to find clinical studies that evaluated the effectiveness of riboflavin for prophylactic treatment of migraine headaches. Only studies that used riboflavin as a sole prophylactic agent in patients less than 19 years of age with a control group were included in our analysis.Summary of resultsFour studies that met the inclusion criteria were used in this review (please see table 1 below). All studies used the International Headache Society criteria to diagnose migraines. The duration of follow-up ranged from 3 to 6 months. The dosage of riboflavin ranged from 50 mg/day to 400 mg/day. In two of the four studies the riboflavin group had a significant decrease in severity, duration and frequency of migraines. The studies that showed an improvement in the riboflavin group used a dosage of 200–400 per day and included a larger sample size.ConclusionsOur review suggests that riboflavin at higher dosages of 200–400 mg/day for 2 to 3 months may be effective in reducing severity and/or frequency of migraine headaches in children. Future large prospective randomised trials controlling for different kinds of migraines and other variables are needed to evaluate the effectiveness of riboflavin for prophylaxis of paediatric migraines.

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