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Migraine Risk Influenced by Extremes of Weight

Migraine Risk Influenced by Extremes of Weight

  • Too many—or too few—pounds—could be a factor in migraine pathogenesis. Scroll through the slides for details. 

  • What’s BMI, Age, and Gender Got to Do with it?

    . Migraine risk is increased in both obese and underweight individuals, according to a new study.1

    . Age and gender appear to be important covariates of this association.

  • >A look at the association between migraine and body composition

    . A meta-analysis of 12 studies with 288,981 participants evaluated the association between migraine and body composition.

    . In 2 studies, most of the participants were aged 50 or older. Other studies included mostly younger participants.

    . In half of the studies Participants self-reported migraine in half the studies

    . Participants self-reported their BMI in more than half the studies

  • Shed or gain a few lbs?

    After adjustments for age and sex, obese people (BMI >30) were 27% more likely to have migraine than people of normal weight.

    Those who were underweight (BMI <18.5) were 13% more likely to have migraine than people of normal weight.

    Age- and sex-adjusted pooled migraine risk was increased in overweight people. This association was lost after adjustment.

    . In underweight people, the age- and sex-adjusted pooled risk of migraine increased by 13% vs with normal weight people.


    Adipose tissue a migraine trigger?

    . Body composition could affect migraine through adipose tissue, which secretes a wide range of molecules that potentially play a role in developing or triggering migraine.

    . Other factors could include changes in physical activity, medications, or conditions such as depression.

  • Clinical implications for your practice.

    . Increased migraine risk is moderate, along the lines of the association of ischemic heart disease and bipolar disorders and body weight.

    . Since both obesity and being underweight are potentially modifiable risk factors for migraine, clinicians should be more aware of the body weight of their migraine patients.

    . More research is needed to determine whether losing or gaining weight lowers the risk for migraine.

  • Reference

    1. Gelaye B, Sacco S, Brown WJ, et al. Body composition status and the risk of migraine. Neurology. 2017; 10.

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