An interesting study was recently published in Cephalalgia and looked at 91 migraine patients. A third of these patients were asked to exercise for 40 minutes for 3 times a week with the supervision of a physiotherapist, another third were doing relaxation exercises, and the final third of the patients was given topiramate. The study lasted for a total of 3 months, in which the migraine status, aerobic capacity, level of physical activity, and quality of life was evaluated. Follow ups of the study were carried out after 3 and 6 months.
The randomized controlled study was performed by researchers at the Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden.
The results showed that the number of migraines fell in all three groups that were examined and described above. There was no difference in the preventative effect between the three treatments.
Emma Varkey, the physiotherapist and doctoral student responsible for the study stated:
“Our conclusion is that exercise can act as an alternative to relaxations and topiramate when it comes to preventing migraines, and is particularly appropriate for patients who are unwilling or unable to take preventative medicines.”
I suppose it would be interesting to do further studies at this point where perhaps another group does relation exercise, regular exercise and takes topiramate.
I personally am not very surprised by the results of this study which seeks to show that other factors should certainly be considered and tried instead of just taking prescription drugs when attempting to control headaches.
As discussed on the new daily persistent headache page over at http://www.teethremoval.com/ndph.html, topiramate is a drug that is often tried and given with NDPH.