Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

Migraine Takes Toll on Intimate Relationships

Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

Migraine Takes Toll on Intimate Relationships

Article excerpt

REPORTING FROM THE AHS ANNUAL MEETING

SAN FRANCISCO -- Nearly 1 in 10 chronic migraine patients say they've delayed having children or had fewer children because of their headaches, according to a new analysis from the CaMEO study.

"I think this is the most heart breaking of the survey responses; we asked, 'Have you delayed having children or had fewer children because of your headaches?' and 2.6% of patients with episodic migraine and 9.6% with chronic migraine said yes," Dawn C. Buse, PhD, said at the annual meeting of the American Headache Society.

CaMEO (the Chronic Migraine Epidemiology and Outcomes study) is a longitudinal, prospective, Internet-based survey whose aim is to flesh out the full impact of migraine.

Dr. Buse presented an analysis of 13,064 migraineur participants, which focused on the impact of migraine on intimate relationships and parenting, an aspect of the disease burden that hasn't been closely examined. All subjects completed the in-depth Family Burden Module, which

Dr. Dawn C. Buse said the most "heartbreaking" of the responses showed that people are delaying having children or having fewer because of migraine. is concerned with the emotional consequences of migraine.

The bottom line is that "migraine has significant negative impact on the most important relationships in our life: with our spouses, partners, and children," declared Dr. Buse, a clinical psychologist at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and director of behavioral medicine for the Montefiore Headache Center in New York.

The extent to which migraineurs perceived their headaches to be a problem increased stepwise with their number of headache days per month. For example, when the 8,127 CaMEO participants in a relationship with a live-in partner were asked to respond to the statement, "If I did not have headaches, I would be a better partner," somewhat or complete agreement was endorsed by 38% of those with low-frequency episodic migraine at a rate of up to 4 headache days per month, 68% of those with 5-9 headache days per month, 73% of those with high-frequency episodic migraine with 10-14 headache days per month, and 78% of those with chronic migraine, defined as 15 or more headache days per month. …

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