In individuals with ≥4 migraine days per month who have not responded to ≥1 prophylactic migraine treatment, migraine was found to substantially affect social and professional life domains, according to a migraine survey analysis published in the Journal of Headache and Pain.

A total of 11,266 individuals from 31 countries who reported ≥4 monthly migraine days in the previous 3 months participated in the “My Migraine Voice” survey. Preventive migraine treatment had been used by 90% of survey participants, with 80% indicating a lack of response to ≥1 prophylactic treatment. The Work Productivity and Activity Impairment (WPAI) questionnaire was delivered to participants to assess the impact of migraine on work productivity.

The majority of participants (74%) reported isolating themselves and/or spending time in darkness during migraine attacks, and 85% reported feeling negative emotions or thoughts associated with migraine, sleeping difficulties, and fear of the next migraine attack. Despite these reports, 57% of respondents reported ≥1 positive aspect related to their migraine, including having learned coping skills and becoming a stronger person

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Almost half (49%) of surveyed individuals described feeling or experiencing limitations in their daily activities as a result of migraine, with 87% reporting an impact of migraine on professional, private, or social life domains. Approximately 38% of participants reported visiting the emergency department in the previous 12 months, with an average of 3.3 visits per person. In addition, 23% of respondents reported spending the night in the hospital due to migraine for an average of 3.2 nights.

The use of self-reported data for migraine diagnoses and outcomes represents a potential limitation of the study.

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 “The greater resilience and strength brought on by coping with migraine suggests that if future treatments could address their existing unmet needs, these individuals with migraine will be able to maximize their contribution to society,” noted the study authors.

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Martelletti P, Schwedt TJ, Lanteri-Minet M, et al. My Migraine Voice survey: a global study of disease burden among individuals with migraine for whom preventive treatments have failed. J Headache Pain. 2018;19(1):115.