Keep the Blues Away with Migraine Surgery

May 10, 2012

As if a woman’s middle-aged challenges with wrinkles, weight gain and hormonal changes weren’t enough, now the researchers tell us that middle aged women are more like to become depressed as a result of migraines!  But don’t despair just yet. Fortunately migraine treatments continue to advance, including migraine surgical options.  See, it’s not all bad news!

The research data comes from the Women’s Health Study, led by Tobias Kurth, M.D., an epidemiologist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, in Boston. Since 1993, this has been an ongoing study of women health professionals.  Findings based on health records of more than 36,000 subjects with no prior history of depression found that women are approximately 40% more likely to become depressed if they experience migraine headaches. The specific type of migraine condition was not a critical factor affecting depression risk.

While migraine medications and anti-depressants offer pharmaceutical solutions to both of these ailments, alternatives do exist.  Conservative migraine treatment and depression therapy may include making lifestyle changes, which incorporate good nutritional habits, exercise, plenty of sleep and relaxation techniques.  If conservative treatment and medication are no longer providing relief from pain and depression, a surgical procedure for migraine treatment may offer an intriguing solution.

The study didn’t offer an apparent reason for the migraine-depression link. However, it isn’t at all surprising that living with chronic pain from migraines would, over time, cause a woman to become depressed from not being able to fully engage in living a full and satisfying life.

“If you know a patient may be more susceptible to symptoms of depression, you might ask questions,” Kurth says. “You might follow them not just for their headaches, but be thinking about the link to depression so you can address symptoms early on.” In the future, Kurth says, scientists should try to identify brain chemicals that may contribute to both conditions.

If there is a definite connection between middle-aged women’s’ migraine and depression, as the results of this study would seem to suggest, a migraine procedure could provide long-lasting relief from migraine pain and disability as well as the debilitating effects of depression, which follows migraines.  An added bonus from this procedure would be the enchanting youthful appearance from fewer facial wrinkles!

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