Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

Military in Iraq Show Greater Rate of Migraine

Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

Military in Iraq Show Greater Rate of Migraine

Article excerpt

LOS ANGELES -- Nearly 40% of soldiers had migraines or probable migraines during their tours of duty in Iraq, but few had a history of migraines before their deployments, Capt. Brett Theeler, MC, USA, reported at the annual meeting of the American Headache Society.

Nineteen percent of the 2,687 soldiers surveyed upon their return met the criteria for definite migraines, 18% had probable migraines, and 11%, nonmigraine-type headaches. Those with definite migraines had an average of 3.5 migraine days / month, reported Capt. Theeler, of the Madigan Army Medical Center, Tacoma, Wash., who collaborated on the research.

Just 5% of the soldiers had a history of migraine headaches prior to their deployments to Iraq.

After returning home from Iraq, soldiers are sent through a medical processing site. Members of one brigade completed a validated 17-question survey about headaches. Based on their survey responses, soldiers were divided three groups: definite migraines, probable migraines, or nonmigraine headaches, a system of classification similar to that used in the American Migraine Study.

The mean age of respondents was 27. The group was 95% male and 5% female

Capt. Theeler deemed the results "very surprising. …

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