Tag Archives | headache

Migraine treament with monoclonal antibodies

Migraine headaches affect around 6 to 8% of males and 10 to 12% of females. It is one of the top five neurological conditions and costs people healthy lives. There is little research on how the current preventative treatments for migraine work. Researchers have speculated that the suppression of cortical spreading depression could be a process at play. Typically migraine patients are given beta-blockers such as propranolol and metroprolol, anticonvulsants valproate and topiramate, and the calcium channel bocker flunarizine as first line medications. These drugs have been shown in randomized placebo controlled studies to reduce the frequency of migraine attacks. A new treatment option could be placed in monoclonal antibodies that target a neuropeptide called CGRP (Calcitonin Gene-related Peptide). CGRP plays is thought to play a key role in headaches. CGRP receptor antagonists have been developed for the treatment of acute migraine and prevention. The medication has proved effected but in some cases treatment had to be abandoned due to acute side effects, including increases of liver enzymes. This has caused CGRP receptor antagonists to have not been approved to date. Newer studies show that the new monoclonal antibody against CGRP, or its receptor, appears to cause less side effects. As […]

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A new marker in blood for migraine?

An interesting article titled “Interictal, circulating sphingolipids in women with episodic migraine: A case-control study” written by B. L. Peterlin and et al. discusses that a new marker in blood may have been found for episodic migraine (Neurology, 2015). Episodic migraine is when a patient has less than 15 headaches per month. The researchers performed a study with 52 women with episodic migraine and 36 women who did not have any headaches. They all had to undergo a neurologic exam, gave blood samples, and had their body mass index measured. The women in the study with migraine had an average of 5.6 headache days per month. The blood samples were tested for a group of lipids that are known to help regulate inflammation in the brain and participate in energy homeostasis. The study found the total levels of lipids called ceramides were decreased in women with episodic migraine when compared to women with no migraines. It was found that women with migraine had approximately 6,000 nanograms per milliliter of total ceramides in their blood and women without headache had about 10,500 nanograms per milliliter. Each standard deviation increase in ceramide levels was found to be associated with over a 92% lower risk of having episodic migraine. The researchers […]

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Finding Relief From Headaches with Meditation

According to research published in the journal Headache, meditation may help migraine headache sufferers. Researchers have known that stress can be a trigger for headaches but there hasn’t been a whole lot of research done to evaluate meditation and it’s benefits. The researchers set out to develop a study to assess the feasibility, safety,and effects of a yoga and meditation intervention known as mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) in adults who suffer from migraines. In the study 19 adults were randomly assigned to 2 groups with 10 of the adults receiving MBSR and 9 receiving standard medical care. The participants attended 8 weekly classes in order to learn MBSR techniques and were told to practice 45 minutes on their own 5 days per week. The participants in the study were evaluated before and after the trial period using measures such as mindfulness, self-efficacy, and disability. The patients maintained headache logs throughout the trial to document how often the headaches occurred, how long they occurred, and the intensity. The researchers found that MBSR study participants had fewer migraines and when migraines occurred they were less intense. In addition, patients with MBSR had headaches that were shorter and less disabling when compared to patients […]

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Rheumatologic Diseases Can Initially Present Like Neurological Disorders

Research appearing in the Current Neurology and Neuroscience Reports have shown that lupus and other rheumatologic disorders can initially present as neurological disorders such as headaches and seizures which can lead to a few months of a delay in proper diagnosis. Rheumatologic diseases include autoimmune and inflammatory disorders of the joints and soft tissues, such as systemic vasculitis, lupus, and ankylosing spondylosis. More than half of lupus patients have headaches and a third have migraines. Around 1.5% of lupus patients have a headache that is persistent, severe, and intractable and does not respond to narcotic medications. Up to 20% of lupus patients have seizures and 1/3 of lupus patients have cognitive dysfunction. Up to 20% of lupus patients experience mood disorders such as psychosis. Patients who have systemic vasculitis can have headaches, stroke like syndromes, seizures, and optic neuropathies. Around 1/3 of systemic vasculitis patients have residual neurological impairments and need treatment to suppress their immune systems. Patients who have ankylosing spondylosis can experience seizures, cranial neuropathy, cognitive impairments, and headaches. There are different treatment options for patients for rheumatic disorders. Medications can include immune-suppressing drugs and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. It is noted however that some medications can have neurological effects as a risk. […]

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Reducing Migraines with Cosmetic Eyelid Surgery

An interesting article titled “Non-Endoscopic Deactivation of Nerve Triggers in Migraine Headache Patients,” appears in the 2014 issue of the journal Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery written by Lisa Gfrerer and et. al. The article describes a method to screen and select patients for a surgical migraine treatment technique used by plastic and reconstructive surgeons. The surgery decompresses nerves that trigger migraines. The surgery used is stated to be an alternative to an endoscopic approach used which works down from the scalp under the skin as the other approach is not always suitable. The surgery discussed involves incisions through the upper eyelid and the study demonstrated that this approach was equally as effective for the deactivation of nerves involved in migraine headaches. In the study migraine headaches were completely eliminated in roughly 51% of the patients while around 20% of the patients experiencing an 80% reduction in their migraine symptoms. Close to 33% of all patients had between 50% and 80% all of their migraine symptoms resolved. A total of 35 patients were included in this study and all suffered from chronic nerve compressed migraine headaches. In order to confirm that all the patients did in fact have chronic nerve compressed migraine […]

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