Friday, August 11, 2006

migraine news roundup 9

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These findings seem to mostly support what we already know about migraines (e.g., don't overuse treatment meds), but there is a little bit of new information here:

Stopping overused pain drugs may improve migraine
stopping overused pain drugs, using preventive drugs, and regular exercise were associated with reversion to common migraines. By contrast, smoking cessation and avoiding caffeine and alcohol did not seem to help.

According to Psychology Today, one study found that migraineurs are five times as likely to suffer major depression as non-headache sufferers:

The Migraine-Depression Connection
Study author Naomi Breslau and colleagues also found that a person with major depression was more at risk of suffering a first-time migraine than non-depressed individuals. And people who live with migraines seem to be more at risk for an initial bout of depression.

Breslau interviewed 496 adults who had a history of migraines, 151 people with severe headaches and 539 people without headache problems. The study followed them for two years.

The authors conclude that both disorders are biologically linked, possibly with brain chemicals or hormones. They suggest that treatment for one should look for the presence of the other.

Another Psychology Today article discusses the results of a study comparing use of chiropractic care and amitriptyline for migraine disease:

Migraines and the Chiropractor's Touch
A study from Northwestern College of Chiropractic in Bloomington, Minnesota, compared chiropractic manipulation with amitriptyline, an antidepressant commonly used to treat migraines. The study found that chiropractic healing was about as successful as the drug.

I'm not sure that these results say as much about the benefits of chiropractice care for migraineurs as they do the difficulty of finding a preventative medication to help migraineurs. Many people do experience diminished frequency of migraines on amitriptyline, but many others do not.

I did not experience any positive results from the three months I received chiropractic care. But every person is different, so it is probably something to consider.

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