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Related terms: Migraine Headache, Hemiplegic Migraine, Complicated Migraine, Basilar-Type Migraine, Basilar Artery Migraine

Noninvasive Devices May Help Migraines, FDA Says

Posted 22 Sep 2014 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Sept. 22, 2014 – Two new prescription devices approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) may provide some relief for people with migraine headaches who don't tolerate migraine medications well, according to a new study. One device – the Cefaly – is designed to prevent migraines, while the other device – the Cerena – is meant to be used when migraines first start, according to an FDA news release. "Patients have been looking for alternative migraine treatments. Because these devices aren't ingested or metabolized like drug therapies, they don't necessarily have the same types of side effects," Michael Hoffmann, a biomedical engineer with the FDA, said in the news release. Migraines involve severe pulsing or throbbing pain in one part of the head. These intense headaches can also cause people to develop nausea and vomiting as well as sensitivity to light and ... Read more

Related support groups: Migraine, Migraine Prevention, Migraine Prophylaxis

Are Migraines in Middle Age Tied to Raised Parkinson's Risk Later?

Posted 17 Sep 2014 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 17, 2014 – Migraines in midlife may be associated with increased odds of developing Parkinson's disease or other movement disorders in later years, new research suggests. The study, which did not prove a cause-and-effect link between the two brain-based conditions, also suggested that the migraine-Parkinson's association was stronger in women with migraines preceded by aura. An aura is a warning sign of a pending attack that includes flashes of light and skin tingling. "We should emphasize that while the risk is increased for Parkinson's disease and these [similar] symptoms, they're still uncommon among those with migraine," said study author Ann Scher, a professor of epidemiology at Uniformed Services University in Bethesda, Md. "I don't think people should necessarily worry that if they have migraines, Parkinson's disease is [in their future]." The research is ... Read more

Related support groups: Migraine, Parkinson's Disease

Cosmetic Eye Procedure May Ease Migraines, Small Study Says

Posted 22 Aug 2014 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Aug. 22, 2014 – Cosmetic eyelid surgery involving specific nerves may do more than improve your looks – the procedure may also provide migraine relief for some, according to new research. The technique involves making incisions in the upper eyelid to deactivate so-called "trigger" nerves. This process also lifts the lid, a technique known as blepharoplasty. The new approach is an alternative to another surgery sometimes used to treat migraines. That one approaches the nerves under the skin but starts at the scalp. Both procedures are known as trigger-site deactivation surgeries. Some neurologists and others who care for people with migraines view the procedures as unproven. But when the surgery is used in appropriate patients, migraine improvement is common, said study researcher Dr. Oren Tessler, an assistant professor of clinical surgery at the Louisiana State University ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Migraine

Surgery Doubted as a Migraine Reliever

Posted 29 Jun 2014 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, June 27, 2014 – Migraine surgery is increasingly touted as a potential "cure" for the debilitating headaches, but researchers say the evidence just isn't there to support those claims. In an analysis of two studies on migraine trigger "deactivation" surgery, researchers found multiple flaws in the study methods. What's more, they say, the surgery carries risks and high costs not covered by insurance, and doesn't jibe with what's known about the underlying causes of migraine. "The surgery is, first of all, unproven. Second, permanent side effects are not uncommon," said Dr. Paul Mathew, a neurologist and headache specialist at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston. Those lingering problems include persistent itching and numbness in areas affected by the surgery – which is typically offered by plastic surgeons, not headache specialists. Mathew, who led the research analysis, ... Read more

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Chronic Migraines Affect the Whole Family

Posted 28 Jun 2014 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, June 26, 2014 – When a spouse, partner or parent has chronic migraines, the whole family suffers, a new study found. The research discovered that most chronic migraine sufferers report that their severe headaches have a big impact on family relationships, activities and sexual intimacy. The results were not surprising to lead study author Dawn Buse, a clinical psychologist and director of behavioral medicine at Montefiore Headache Center in New York City. "I hear firsthand about the tragic effect that chronic migraine has on every aspect of people's lives, including work and home life." Still, Buse wanted to quantify the degree to which families were affected. People who don't experience migraines or have family members with the condition don't understand how it can affect the entire family, Buse said. "It's very important to bring this data to light, to show that chronic ... Read more

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Migraines May Worsen During Menopause

Posted 24 Jun 2014 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, June 24, 2014 – New research confirms what women with migraine headaches have told their doctors for years: migraine attacks seem to get worse in the years before and during menopause. "In women who have migraine, headaches increase by 50 to 60 percent when they go through the perimenopause and menopausal time periods," said Dr. Vincent Martin, professor of medicine and co-director of the Headache and Facial Pain Program at the University of Cincinnati. The new finding, Martin said, "basically confirms what women have been telling us physicians for decades. We finally have some evidence." The perimenopausal period is the time when the body is transitioning to menopause – when monthly periods end. Perimenopause can last several years, and is often marked by irregular periods, hot flashes and sleep problems. Perimenopause can begin in the 40s, and menopause occurs, on average, ... Read more

Related support groups: Migraine, Menopausal Disorders

Head Injuries Tied to Higher Migraine Risk for Veterans

Posted 19 Jun 2014 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, June 19, 2014 – U.S. veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars who suffered brain injuries are at a much higher risk for headaches, especially migraines, a new study finds. Deployment-linked traumatic brain injury "is associated with a strong and highly significant increase in frequency and intensity of headache, the majority of which are migraine," concludes a team led by Dr. James Couch, of the University of Oklahoma Medical School in Oklahoma City. Couch's team noted that traumatic brain injury is the "signature injury" for U.S. troops deployed in the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, "occurring in 15 percent to 20 percent of deployed soldiers." They added that "combat zone deployment, by itself, is stressful. Both traumatic brain injury and stress are known to be associated with headache." The new study included 53 veterans who had suffered a traumatic brain injury ... Read more

Related support groups: Migraine, Head Injury

Migraines Linked to Increased Risk of 'Silent Strokes'

Posted 16 May 2014 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, May 15, 2014 – Older people who have migraines may be twice as likely to have "silent strokes," according to a new study. Silent strokes are symptomless brain injuries caused by a blood clot that disrupts blood flow to the brain. Researchers cautioned that these brain injuries are a risk factor for future strokes. "I do not believe migraine sufferers should worry, as the risk of ischemic stroke in people with migraine is considered small," the study's lead author, Dr. Teshamae Monteith, said in a news release from the American Heart Association. Monteith is an assistant professor of clinical neurology and chief of the headache division at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. "However, those with migraine and vascular risk factors may want to pay even greater attention to lifestyle changes that can reduce stroke risk, such as exercising and eating a low-fat diet ... Read more

Related support groups: Migraine, Ischemic Stroke, Transient Ischemic Attack

New Drugs May Help Prevent Migraines

Posted 22 Apr 2014 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, April 22, 2014 – Two experimental drugs may help prevent migraines in people who suffer multiple attacks a month, according to preliminary findings from a pair of clinical trials. The drugs, one given by IV and one by injection, are part of a new approach to preventing migraine headaches. They are "monoclonal antibodies" that target a tiny protein called the calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) – which recent research has implicated in triggering migraine pain. In one study, patients saw a 66 percent reduction in their migraine attacks five to eight weeks after a single dose of the IV drug – known for now as ALD403. That compared with a 52 percent decrease among patients who were given a placebo, or inactive, infusion. In the other trial, patients receiving the injection drug saw a similar benefit from three months' worth of biweekly treatments. The findings, scheduled to ... Read more

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Could Reducing Stress Help Bring On a Migraine?

Posted 1 Apr 2014 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, April 1, 2014 – In a surprising twist on how stress may affect migraine risk, new research suggests that patients who are able to lower their stress levels may end up inadvertently boosting their immediate risk for a migraine attack. The study, led by Dr. Richard Lipton, director of the Montefiore Headache Center and vice chair of neurology at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, in New York City, was published March 26 in the journal Neurology. "This study demonstrates a striking association between reduction in perceived stress and the occurrence of migraine headaches," Lipton said in a college news release. Though the authors noted that stress has long been seen as a trigger of headaches, the new study found that when migraine sufferers are able to relax following a bout of elevated stress, the stress decline itself may boost migraine risk. During the first six-hour ... Read more

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Topamax Approval for Migraines Expanded to Younger Users

Posted 31 Mar 2014 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, March 31, 2014 – U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval of the drug Topamax (topiramate) to prevent migraine headaches has been expanded to include adolescents 12 years to 17 years, the agency said Friday. It's the first migraine-prevention drug approved for adolescents, the FDA said in a news release. Topamax was first sanctioned in 1996 to prevent seizures, and was approved to prevent migraines in adults in 2004. Some 12 percent of the U.S. population has migraines, usually characterized by throbbing pain on one side of the head. Other symptoms may include nausea and sensitivity to light and sound. Topamax was evaluated in clinical studies involving 103 adolescent migraine sufferers. The most common side effects included burning or prickling sensations in the extremities, upper respiratory infection, loss of appetite and abdominal pain. The drug increases the risk of ... Read more

Related support groups: Migraine, Topamax, Migraine Prevention, Topiramate, Migraine Prophylaxis, Topamax Sprinkle, Topiragen

FDA Approves Topamax for Migraine Prevention in Adolescents

Posted 28 Mar 2014 by Drugs.com

March 28, 2014 – Today, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved Topamax (topiramate) for prevention (prophylaxis) of migraine headaches in adolescents ages 12 to 17. This is the first FDA approval of a drug for migraine prevention in this age group. The medication is taken on a daily basis to reduce the frequency of migraine headaches. Topamax was first approved by the FDA in 1996 to prevent seizures. It was approved for migraine prevention in adults in 2004. “Migraine headaches can impact school performance, social interactions, and family life,” said Eric Bastings, M.D., deputy director of the Division of Neurology Products in the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. “Adding dosing and safety information for the adolescent age group to the drug’s prescribing information will help to inform health care professionals and patients in making treatment choices.” Abou ... Read more

Related support groups: Migraine, Topamax, Migraine Prevention, Topiramate, Migraine Prophylaxis

FDA Approves First Device to Prevent Migraines

Posted 11 Mar 2014 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, March 11, 2014 – The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Tuesday approved the first device aimed at preventing migraines. The device, called Cefaly, is a headband-like device that runs on a battery and sits across the forehead and over the ears, the FDA said in a statement. "The user positions the device in the center of the forehead, just above the eyes, using a self-adhesive electrode," the agency explained. "The device applies an electric current to the skin and underlying body tissues to stimulate branches of the trigeminal nerve, which has been associated with migraine headaches." Cefaly is made by Belgium-based Cefaly Technology and is available by prescription only. The device is only indicated for use by adults and should only be used for 20 minutes per day, the FDA said. The agency also noted that "the user may feel a tingling or massaging sensation where the ... Read more

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Power of Suggestion Revealed in Study of Migraine Drug

Posted 8 Jan 2014 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 8, 2014 – A new study of migraine sufferers suggests that what you're told when your doctor prescribes medication can influence your body's response to it. Researchers from Harvard Medical School and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston compared the effects of a common migraine drug and an inactive placebo in 66 people who suffer from migraines. The condition includes throbbing headache, nausea, vomiting and sensitivity to light and sound. The results consistently showed that taking the pills accompanied by positive information increased the effectiveness of the treatment, whether the patient had taken the real deal – the drug Maxalt – or a pill labeled "placebo." Headache specialist Dr. Andrew Charles said the study demonstrates that expectation about response plays an important role in the ultimate response to a treatment. "When migraine patients were told ... Read more

Related support groups: Migraine, Maxalt, Maxalt-MLT, Rizatriptan

Behavioral Therapy Might Ease Kids' Migraine Symptoms

Posted 26 Dec 2013 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Dec. 24, 2013 – A specific type of therapy helps reduce the number of migraines and migraine-related disabilities in children and teens, according to a new study. The findings provide strong evidence for the use of "cognitive behavioral therapy" – which includes training in coping with pain – in managing chronic migraines in children and teens, said study leader Scott Powers, of Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, and colleagues. The therapy should be routinely offered as a first-line treatment, along with medications, he said. More than 2 percent of adults and about 1.75 percent of children have chronic migraines, according to the study, which was published in the Dec. 25 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association. But there are no treatments approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to quell these debilitating headaches in young people, the ... Read more

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