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Migraine Research Foundation

Migraine Research Foundation

This news flash just landed in my email Inbox. Ann Scher, a 2007 Migraine Research Foundation grant recipient, published the results of her research in the June 24th issue of JAMA. Ann and her colleagues studied the incidence of late-in-life brain infarcts among Icelandic men and women who reported migraine in mid-life.

Most important, the researcher didn’t look at clinical evidence of stroke, but rather micro-strokes that may be symptomless, but cause changes in the brain visible on MRI. These micro-strokes may become symptomatic when they accumulate.

The researchers concluded:

 Migraine with aura in midlife was associated with late-life prevalence of cerebellar infarct-like lesions on MRI. This association was statistically significant only for women. This is consistent with the hypothesis that migraine with aura in midlife is associated with late-life vascular disease in the cerebellum and in women.

I found these results interesting because my mother, who is 87, has Migraine disease. Although she doesn’t experience acute attacks any more, she had them up until her 40s. Now, at 87, she has dementia precipitated by an accumulation of micro-strokes. Her MRI shows cerebellar changes resulting from these infarcts. Her mother experienced the same thing.

Although I don’t have Migraine with aura, I sometimes worry if I will meet the same fate. Even more reason for researchers and doctors to find new ways to prevent this chronic, progressive disease.

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