Melatonin to prevent migraine or tension type headache in children
A 3 month open label trial of melatonin prophylaxis in children with primary headache. After a one month baseline period without receiving preventive drugs, all children received a 3-month course of melatonin, 3 mg, administered orally, at bedtime. A total of 22 children were enrolled (10 boys, mean age 12.2+/-2.6 years, age range 6-16 years), 13 had recurrent migraine without aura, 1 with aura and 8 had chronic tension type headache. When the trial ended, 14 of the 21 subjects reported that the headache attacks had decreased by more than 50% in respect to baseline and 4 of them reported having no headache attacks. After receiving melatonin for one month one subject dropped out because of excessive daytime sleepiness. Our promising results warrant randomized placebo controlled trials in children to assess the real effectiveness of melatonin in preventing primary headache.