Panic Disorder and Migraine: Better Understanding the Connection

Physical and mental health disorders, including depression and anxiety, often afflict migraineurs, with current research indicating that panic disorder (PD) is the anxiety disorder most often associated with migraine.

In a review article in the January issue of the journal Headache, Todd Smitherman, PhD, FAHS, from the University of Mississippi, and colleagues explored PD, migraine and the connection between the two to better understand assessment and treatment of affected patients. Continue Reading

New Frontier in Headache Treatment?

Many pharmaceutical companies are researching completely new compounds to attack headaches from different angles. Merck & Co., Inc., announced that a Phase III clinical trial showed that a new compound called telcagepant (formerly known as MK-0974) significantly improved relief of migraine pain and associated symptoms comparable to the triptan zolmitriptan, but with fewer side effects. Continue Reading

Reader’s Mail: Appropriate Diagnosis Is Key to Solving Health Problems

Q. For the past year, off and on, and for the past three months continuously, I have had headache/dizziness related to the sensation of clogged ears. Per the advice of an ear, nose and throat specialist, I  do a saline sinus rinse, take a dose of Flonase, and I breathe steam with eucalyptus oil on a daily basis. I put a humidifier on my CPAP. I have also tried Sudafed, Claritin and Coricidin with no relief.  I am miserable, and the condition disturbs my sleep. Is there any hope for me?  Continue Reading

Dizziness and Migraines: The Forgotten Symptom

When you think of a migraine, many symptoms may come to mind: incapacitating pain, sound sensitivity, light sensitivity, nausea – just to name a few. However, one potential symptom of migraine is often overlooked: dizziness (also known as vertigo). According to Dr. Timothy Hain, professor of Neurology, Otolaryngology, and Physical Therapy/Human Movement at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine, only 372 research articles concerning migraine with vertigo have been published since 1952 (this number was attained from the National Library of Medicine’s search engine, PubMed, in 2008). “This indicates that while migraine associated vertigo has not been ignored, it has not elicited nearly as much attention from the research community as other disorders,” writes Hain in his report entitled “Migraine Associated Vertigo (MAV).” Continue Reading

Standards of Care for Headache Diagnosis and Treatment

According to the American Migraine Prevalence and Prevention (AMPP) Study1, more than 29 million Americans experience migraines, yet only about 48 percent who have the symptoms of migraine actually receive proper diagnosis. Migraine is a chronic neurologic disorder characterized by recurring attacks of head pain and associated symptoms such as dizziness, nausea, vomiting or extreme sensitivity to light and sound. Below is an overview of the National Headache Foundation’s (NHF) Standards of Care for Headache Diagnosis and Treatment which include the U.S. Headache Consortium’s recommendations for the proper diagnosis of and treatment options for migraine. Continue Reading