When it comes to migraines, many things are known. There is a long list of potential triggers, from specific foods to hormones. Migraines affect the body in different ways. Genetics or environmental factors may come into play. And they are at a minimum painful, and, at their worst, debilitating. What is not known is the true cause.
Research plays a critical role in all of these aspects. Scientific studies can help identify triggers, gain increased understanding of what happens in the brain and body during the migraine and get clues to treatments or even a cure. Different studies focus on specific aspects of cause and effect. This research is critical to making progress in the fight to treat or even eliminate migraines.
Migraines are defined as severe pulsing, throbbing headaches that can last for a few hours or several days and often come with nausea and vomiting and sensitivity to light, noise, and even movement. Sufferers sometimes experience an ‘aura’, which is a combination of indicators that a migraine is coming, such as tingling, light flashes, or blind spots.
According to the Migraine Research Foundation (MRF), 39 million Americans—10 to 12 percent of the population—suffer from migraines, and women are 3 times more likely to suffer than men. Migraines are the third most prevalent and sixth most disabling disease in the world. The MRF states, “Migraine is an extremely incapacitating collection of neurological symptoms.
Everyone either knows someone who suffers from migraine or struggles with migraine themselves.” The Mayo Clinic says that several factors may contribute to the likelihood of having migraines, including family history, age, gender, lifestyle, and hormonal changes.
Migraines are also a public health issue. MRF states that the cost of healthcare and lost productivity are estimated to be as high as $36 billion a year in the U.S. alone, and healthcare costs are 70 percent higher for a family with a migraine suffer.
Today there is a wide range of treatments aimed at relieving migraine symptoms and prevention. A major focus of research is the development of new treatment options, the identification of new drugs, refining effective dosages of existing medications, and honing in on the causes of migraines in order to prevent them from occurring in the first place.
For all of these reasons and more, medical research studies are critical to improving the prevention, treatment and eventual cure of migraines. Meridien Research is conducting migraine-related research studies at several of our locations. For more information or to see if you or someone you know may qualify to participate, please contact us today at (888) 777-8839.