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HeadWay, Issue #119 -- Migraine and Headache - Are things improving?
June 16, 2014

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In this issue:

Migraine 2014: Lots going on, lots to be done!

June is Migraine and Headache Awareness Month

Say what?!  CGRP

Migraine 2014: Lots going on, lots to be done!

June is Migraine & Headache Awareness Month, and it's a great time to reflect on where we are and where we've been.

Migraine and headache research has come a long way since HeadWay first came out, almost 11 years ago.  One of the most important things is that information has gotten out to both doctors and patients.  People are much more aware of the wide range of options that are available for migraine treatment.

We also know a lot more about which treatments work best, and why.

However, there is still a lot to be done as we look at new treatments and better understand the old ones.  For example, we need to understand why Botox (onabotulinumtoxinA) works so well for some and not so well for others.  Actually, this goes for many common migraine treatments - would a different type of the medication work better?  Does it work only for patients with a certain type of migraine?  Do we have the dosage right?  Does it not work on its own, but help significantly when combined with another treatment?

There are new formulations of medications and supplements coming out that could work better for some patients.  For example, ZECUITY is a patch which uses a microprocessor to deliver sumatriptan through your skin (using a patch).

Cefaly is a non-drug option, using transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation to treat migraine.

Levadex, an inhaled version of dihydroergotamine mesylate (DHE), has had a bumpy ride to acceptance but may be available in a few months.

Probably the most excitement right now revolves around the new CGRP class of drugs.  Researchers have high expectations for the CGRPs, but like any other new treatment it will take time to see who it works with and why.

Research continues on other types of treatment, such as supplements (magnesium and ginger), and tinted lenses, massage, biofeedback, and many more.

Perhaps the most positive development in the field is that doctors and patients alike are realizing the value of a combination of treatments instead of just a pill.  There are so many excellent, well-researched non-drug treatments, not to mention therapies that include exercise, various diets, and other lifestyle changes.

We have a long way to go when it comes to understanding and treating migraine and headache disorders.  But we've also come a long way.  Let's keep fighting back.

June is Migraine and Headache Awareness Month

Want to find out more?  

Check out the American Headache and Migraine Association (AHMA) for resources especially for this month.

Get involved with the Photo Challenge!

Watch Twitter and other places for the hashtag #MHAM (and use it!)

Have a blog?  Take the blog challenge!

Some useful links to share to help your friends and family on Facebook and Twitter be more aware of what's going on with headache and migraine:And speaking of funding - encourage your family and friends to help by supporting the Migraine Research Foundation through this page!

Say what?!  CGRP

CGRP stands for calcitonin gene-related peptide neurotransmitter  A new class of drugs will focus on blocking CGRP, in hopes that this will block the messages that your body sends that get the migraine chain-reaction going.

Read more about The Secret of CGRP.

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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