New clinical trial for novel migraine treatment in the North of England

A team of neurologists in the North of England, led by Dr Jitka Vanderpol, are conducting a trial of a novel migraine treatment utilising a ‘cooling device’. 

The BrainCool-Migraine trial aims to see how effective a treatment called ‘intra-nasal evaporative cooling’ is at helping to reduce the headache pain often associated with migraine.

The treatment works by introducing cooling into the passageways of the nose through two small cannulas. It is believed that this cooling may cause blood vessels surrounding the brain to narrow, thus relieving the pain and symptoms of migraine. The cooling may also directly affect cell-signalling in the brain, which may stop a migraine headache.

“Among adults of all ages, migraine is one of the top 20 causes of disability. It is becoming increasingly important to find novel, drug-free, methods to treat migraine headache. A recent pilot trial has shown that ‘intra-nasal cooling’ appears to be an effective, quick and well-tolerated treatment. Our team is now starting a larger ‘randomised’ clinical trial to provide further evidence of benefit from this application” , says Dr Jitka Vanderpol.

 The device is manufactured by ‘BrainCool AB’ from Sweden. It’s CEO, Mr Martin Waleij adds;

“I am delighted to work with established neurologists in the NHS to further develop and appraise our new medical device for the treatment of migraine”.

The trial is open to residents of Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne & Wear, County Durham and Teesside and they are looking for 90 participants from across the regions that have had 1 - 15 migraines a month (episodic migraine) for over a year and have had no changes to their migraine medication in the last three months. Participants should be aged 18 - 70 with no history of heart disease and no current or planned pregnancy.

Participants who meet the criteria will be asked to complete a questionnaire relating to their migraines for a month to further assess if they can receive the new treatment. After this period, suitable participants will be given either a ‘BrainCool’ device or a ‘dummy’ device (placebo) for use during their next three migraine episodes and will be asked to record some more information. The study is now live and is planned to conclude by mid-2018, with participation lasting 3-4 months.

If you are interested in getting involved in this research and would like more information, please e-mail: or ring 07920 288244 / 01228 603145.

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