Propranolol: A migraine prophylactic since the 1960s




Beta-blocker, Propranolol, Migraine, Prophylaxis


Propranolol was the first non-selective beta-adrenergic blocker to be developed. Initially it was used in the treatment of cardiovascular diseases, but since the 60's it has been used in the prevention of migraine.
The objective of this study was to know the history of propranolol and its use as a migraine prophylactic.
This study was an integrative literature review using articles with historical data on propranolol, from its origin in cardiology to its indication in the preventive treatment of migraine.
Propranolol was described in 1962 for the treatment of cardiovascular diseases. In the same decade, it was prescribed for the preventive treatment of migraine and, recently, included in the consensus of the Brazilian Headache Society.
Although propranolol was initially synthesized for the treatment of heart disease, it has proved to be an effective drug in preventing migraine attacks.


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How to Cite

Souza WP de O, Fortes YML, Soares A de A, Silva-Néto RP. Propranolol: A migraine prophylactic since the 1960s. Headache Med [Internet]. 2023 Mar. 31 [cited 2024 May 28];14(1):3-6. Available from:




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