Aspirin is more effective for migraine than naproxen sodium (Aleve)

Review of 16 published scientific articles on the efficacy of naproxen sodium as a treatment of acute migraine indicates that it is effective in the treatment of moderate to severe migraines. Naproxen sodium, 500 mg (2 tablets of Aleve) provided some relief after 2 hours to 45% of patients, complete pain relief to 17% and complete relief after 24 hours to 11%. Aspirin, 1,000 mg (2 extra-strength tablets) has been shown to do better, providing 52%, 27% and 24% of relief, respectively. Both naproxen sodium and aspirin relieve all of the migraine symptoms, including pain, nausea, sensitivity to light and noise.

  1. Leo says: 06/17/20109:38 am

    Thanks for clarifying!

  2. Dr. Mauskop says: 05/30/201010:43 pm

    This is a very good point and it applies to all research studies. The results of these studies are reported as averages, so on average aspirin is more effective than naproxen, but this is not true for every patient. Another good example concerns triptans, a family of drugs for migraines. According to all clinical trials Amerge takes longer to work than Imitrex, Maxalt, Relpax, or Zomig. However, I’ve had several patients for whom Amerge worked faster than all the other triptans.

  3. Leo says: 05/30/20108:34 pm

    I think that the title of the post might be misleading… It should say “Aspirin is more effective for migrain than naproxen sodium in x% of individuals”… Aspirin does not help me at all, but naproxen does!

Submit comment