Woman wins $12 million methysergide settlement

A Canberra woman who claimed that overprescribing of the migraine drug methysergide (Deseril) caused her stroke has settled a case against a GP, neurologist and hospital for $12 million.

The woman alleged that doctors had breached their duty of care by leaving her on the vasoconstrictor drug without a break for four years.

Because of its propensity to cause fibrosis and vasoconstriction, methysergide is not recommended for continuous use, and the product information advises a four-week ‘drug holiday’ every six months.

In a case heard in the ACT Supreme Court, the woman claimed a severe stroke in 2011 could have been avoided if she had been given “Deseril holidays”.

The woman alleged she been taking the drug for migraine prevention since the late 1990s, and her original neurologist had ensured she had regular breaks of four weeks every five months to reduce the risks from the