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HeadWay, Issue #125 -- 7 Headache Conversations of 2014 (and why they matter)
December 22, 2014

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In this issue:

7 Headache Conversations of 2014

Say what?!  Parenteral

7 Headache Conversations of 2014

It seems like there was renewed hope, renewed momentum, in the fight against migraine in 2014. We can only hope that will continue on into 2015. I hope that things have improved even since we talked in January about discrimination against migraine patients.

Today we're going to look back at the ten most popular posts at Headache and Migraine News, and talk about why these are important conversations.

1) Cefaly: Now Available in the USA (for less)  We actually started talking about Cefaly, a transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) device, back in February of 2013 (see 20 minutes a day with an anti-migraine device...). The device has helped some with migraine, but a big question has been how to afford the $374 (in the USA) price tag (for the device and electrodes). Some insurance companies will at least partially cover Cefaly as a TENS device, but we're still waiting for a more consistent acceptance as an insurance claim. See also Why Cefaly won't solve all our problems (and what to do instead)

2) Baking Soda for Headaches?  This may sound like an odd post, but there's actually a considerable amount of science behind it. It speaks to our desire for convenient, cheap treatment, and also relates to the ongoing investigation of gut problems and their relation to migraine. See also The Gut Brain Connection

3) Will new Migraine Med fight Obesity and Diabetes?  The study of anti-CGRP medications continues to be the big story in migraine treatment, although it doesn't begin or end in 2014. This study suggests that there may be more than one benefit to the research into CGRP.

4) Neck Pain: A Missing Piece of the Migraine Puzzle?  This remarkable discussion brought a symptom to light that many of us had not focused on in the past. It turns out that neck pain is indeed a huge piece of the migraine puzzle - and doctors need to pay more attention to it.

5) Vitamin D: An important Migraine Treatment?  At first, the craze over vitamin D may seem like another "cure-all" method. But the research into D and migraine cannot be so easily brushed aside. At this point, it seems like more targeted research is needed to discover if a certain dosage of vitamin D could help certain patients.

6) "Proof" that Headaches are caused by Stress?  The headlines in 2014 may have confirmed to many what they thought was obvious - get stressed, get a headache. Unfortunately, the reality is much more complex, and the belief that stress is the main cause of headache may cause doctors and patients to miss much more important factors that could lead to better treatment.

7) This Key Sleep Question Could Lead to Better Treatment for Headache Disorders  Research into migraine and sleep is leading us to believe that many patients are missing out on excellent treatment. We have long known that sleep disorders are related to migraine, but patients and doctors need to take the time to investigate the connection. Also see Sleep Apnea and Migraine – Comments from You!

Say what?!  Parenteral

If you go into emergency with a severe headache, you may be given something that is parenteral. No, that doesn't mean your parents invented it. Parenteral is an adjective that refers to a treatment that is not taken via the digestive tract. In other words, you don't swallow it - most often it's given by intravenous or intramuscular injection.

This could be a supplement such as magnesium, or a medication such as sumatriptan. For more about recommended emergency room procedures, read Sequence of Treatments in Emergency – what works?

Thanks for reading!  Remember, if you have feedback or ideas for future issues, visit the HeadWay MailRoom.  Your password is nomoache.
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