Migraine is one of the common types of headache seen in nearly 10% of whole population across the world. It is recurrent associated with moderate to severe pain which really disturbs the affected people. It is common between the age group of 15-30 years. It puts a lot of economical burden in terms of money spent on medications, absent from work and loss of productivity. Nearly 4% of all children suffer from migraine.
Mainly two types of migraine:
- Migraine with aura – 20 % of all ( warning symptoms – mainly blurring of vision)
- Migraine without aura – about 80 % .
- More common in females than males( 15 % and 7%)
Characteristics of migraine
Headache of variable severity, the pain is pulsatile, gradually increases, may have dislike accompany, may feel better after vomiting. Usually lasts for 2-4 hrs, sometimes 1-2 days. During pain any physical exercise may increase the pain and may feel exhausted once the pain reduces. In migraine with aura-many other symptoms like blurring of vision, numbness of the limbs etc may appear before the headache.
It is not clearly not known what causes migraine .A combination of genetic susceptibility, environmental, physical, and emotional factors may be responsible. Nearly 50% may have someone suffering from similar headache in other family members.
Course of migraine headache
It is a chronic pain syndrome of episodic nature, which does not produce any serious damages to brain, it may lasts for few years to many years and as the person grows older it becomes less frequent.
Diagnosis of migraine is mainly clinical, most investigations if done will be normal in migraine, at times CT scan brain is advised to rule out many serious conditions producing similar pain.
Treatment available are mainly medical( drugs) management .Drugs may be required for few weeks to upto one year , they help to reduce frequency and intensity.
Many researches are trying to find out newer drugs with least side effects , more effective and of lesser cost. Botox injection which is used for antiaging purpose is also used in many who are worried about the side effect of daily medication. Alternative measures like ayurvedic drugs , homeo drugs, acupressure ,magnetic stimulation, yoga etc are also used with limited success.