New Treatment For Migraines Now Available In Malaysia | Star2.com

If you have migraines frequently, this is goonews for you!

11.9.2019

If you have migraines frequently, this is goonews for you!

Migraines are more than just headaches, they are chronic neurological conditions where the brain seems to be oversensitive to stimuli, resulting in pain.

Migraine is a chronic neurological disease that causes recurrent attacks of head pain that is often associated with nausea and vomiting, as well as sensitivity to light and sound.

It’s not clear what causes migraines, but according to Mayo Clinic, genetics and environmental factors appear to play a role.

For Norhakimi Khaiessa Ahmad, 45, her nightmare started after suffering from menorrhagia (heavy menstrual bleeding).

“The doctor in the emergency department treated the pain as a severe headache, gave me medication and sent me home.

Her headaches would occur in the morning, and by night, she would recover.

“Now, when I go out in the sun, it triggers my migraine, so I have to wear sunglasses 24/7.”

“A headache is like a toothache – you don’t know how I’m feeling, but the pain is there.

“So I’ve begun using my standard statement by saying ‘I’m sorry, I can’t take off my sunglasses as it triggers my migraine’. Then they loosen up and smile.

Globally, migraine is the leading cause of disability in the below-50 age group, followed by lower back pain and diabetes.

In the 2013 Global Burden of Disease Study, migraine on its own was found to be the sixth highest cause worldwide, of years lost due to disability. Headache disorders collectively were third highest.

Anxiety and depression are significantly more common in people with migraine than in healthy individuals.

“When we think of disability, we often assume it is wheelchair-based. But disability does not necessarily have to be physical.

“So far, I’ve only managed to get one person to obtain disability status due to migraine,’ says neurologist and headache specialist Dr Julia Shahnaz Merican.

“There is a mixed bag of symptoms that occur before a migraine is triggered and the pain level can be anywhere from moderate to severe.

“It is not surprising, therefore, that migraine is highly comorbid (occurs together) with mental health disorders such as depression.

She says, “I tell them to keep a diary and note down everything for at least two months, so that we can tell whether the migraines are chronic (15 or more headache days per month) or episodal (up to 14 headache days per month).

“I tell them to try it for a month to see if there are any changes.

The treatment targets the calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) receptor – a neurotransmitter that plays a critical role in triggering migraine.

“You should be able to see a difference within one week of initiation (of the injection).

It is prescribed by neurologists and is currently available in private hospitals only.

“There is a low discontinuation rate with Pasurta. However, if patients achieve headache freedom, it is their choice to stop treatment,” says Dr Julia.

Read more: The Star

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