Does Cambia Work Well for Migraines?

Dr. Sharon Orrange
Dr. Orrange is an Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine in the Division of Geriatric, Hospitalist and General Internal Medicine at the Keck School of Medicine of USC.
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Cambia is a powder form of the anti-inflammatory diclofenac. Diclofenac has been available forever as a tablet, which you may know by the brand name Voltaren. It turns out that diclofenac, when taken in the faster acting solution known as Cambia, works very well at the onset of migraine. Very well and fast, within 15 minutes.

How well does Cambia work? Cambia works much better than placebo and even better than diclofenac in tablet form . . . and within 15 minutes. Cambia provides more freedom from pain from migraine as well as relief from nausea, light sensitivity and sound sensitivity. Thirty-three percent of people who took Cambia were able to perform all routine activities at 2 hours post dose and 54.5% were free of disability from migraine at 24 hours.

What is Cambia? It is a powder form of a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) similar to naproxen and ibuprofen (Motrin). The diclofenac tablet had been used for acute migraine for years before the release of the powder/solution form.

What is the Cambia dosage? One packet (50 mg) of Cambia powder dissolved in 30 – 60 ml of water and ingested immediately at the onset of headache is the recommended dosage for acute migraine.

What are the downsides? As with all NSAIDS, it is advised that people with known heart disease not take Cambia long term and as with the others, Cambia can cause gastrointestinal bleeding. Cambia is also expensive and available only as a brand name.

When used short term for acute migraine it’s a great, safe option that works well.

Dr O.

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