New Clues on What Causes Migraines
In the last two weeks, three new studies about the links between migraines and other diseases give good examples of what we've learned so far about the condition and about where researchers might find more clues. The three studies — tying migraines to stroke, depression, and even suicide — may not seem like good news to the 28 million Americans who suffer from migraines, of whom about two-thirds are women. But the studies do highlight the very different ideas researchers have today about the mechanisms that underlie the condition.
a The maker of soon-to-be-released migraine treatment drug Trexima has announced the medication is consistently effective for patients:
Trexima Demonstrated Efficacy Across Multiple Migraine Attacks
Patients who suffer from migraines frequently cite inconsistent effectiveness as a reason for their dissatisfaction with their medicine. New data from more than 1,100 patients show that the investigational migraine therapy Trexima, when taken early, produced pain-free results at two and four hours, as well as a sustained pain-free response 2-24 hours, across individual patients' multiple migraine attacks, demonstrating the consistency in efficacy that patients desire. Furthermore, nearly one third of all patients were pain free at two hours. These findings were presented today at the 59th Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Neurology.
a The Psychiatric Times reports that a small study found women who were able to achieve remission through talk therapy, monthly therapy can help with management of their depression. The results were not as good for those who needed medication and therapy to adequately treat their depression.
Monthly Maintenance Psychotherapy Helps Ward Off Recurrent Depression
For women with depression who achieved remission with interpersonal psychotherapy, a monthly therapy booster prevented recurrence for 74% of patients over two years, researchers reported.
On the other hand, for patients who required drug therapy coupled with psychotherapy to achieve remission, psychotherapy alone for the few patients who remained in the study was significantly less effective, Ellen Frank, Ph.D., of the University of Pittsburgh, and colleagues, reported online in the May issue of the American Journal of Psychiatry.
a The grass isn't necessarily greener on the other side of the pond. Doctors in the UK are publicly admitting some treatments must be rationed because of increasing demand:
Doctors admit: NHS treatments must be rationed
In a major report that will embarrass the government, the British Medical Association will say fertility treatment, plastic surgery and operations for varicose veins and minor childhood ailments, such as glue ear, are among a long list of procedures in jeopardy.
a Finally, a thought-provoking piece about the effects of the stigma of mental illness:
How Clinical Diagnosis Might Exacerbate the Stigma of Mental Illness
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