James Paget praised for migraine treatment in charity's new report

The James Paget Hospital at Gorleston. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

The James Paget Hospital at Gorleston has been praised in the Migraine Trust report. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021

A monthly specialist clinic for migraine patients in the Great Yarmouth and Waveney areas has been praised in a new report by a leading health charity trying to improve treatment for sufferers. 

The James Paget University Hospital in Gorleston was ranked in the top five top trusts in the country for specialist migraine care after Freedom of Information requests by the Migraine Trust. 

The charity says one in seven people in the region suffer from migraines and is calling for services across the country, including in Norfolk, to further speed up diagnosis and care.

Chief executive Rob Music said this included access to calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) monoclonal antibody treatment, the first-ever drug specifically for preventing migraines. 

The charity singled out the work of the James Paget for its specialist headache clinic and specialist headache doctor.

Dr Carlo Canepa, who began the monthly clinic at the start of this year, says the clinic sees up to eight patients at a time, with plans to expand subject to demand. 

He said; "I see more than 80 to 100 migraine cases a year and have a profound interest in this subject. I’m hoping to explore this further through research and increasing our capacity to do Botox for migraine in the future.”

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A trust spokesman said it has the possibility of CGRP prescription.

Both the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital and Queen Elizabeth Hospital offer services for migraines. 

Rob Music, chief executive of the Migraine Trust.

Rob Music, chief executive of the Migraine Trust. - Credit: Migraine Trust

Mr Music said across the country patients were resorting to private prescriptions at a cost of more than £300 a month, because they could not access CGRP. 

He said:“It is unacceptable that people living with such a debilitating long-term condition cannot easily access CGRP medication and must travel outside their area to see a specialist. This inequity must change."

A spokesman for NHS Norfolk and Waveney Clinical Commissioning Group said it follows NICE guidance when diagnosing and treating migraines.

They added: "This includes offering a range of prevention and treatment options through primary care.

“Where appropriate, GPs can also refer patients to a specialist for further care and treatment. This could include calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) monoclonal antibody treatment, which we commission in line with NICE recommendations as an option for preventing migraines in adults.”