Veteranclaims’s Blog

November 9, 2010

Migraine Heacdaches Associated with 36% of Returning Veterans

In one study of 3,621 U.S. soldiers screened within 90 days of returning from a one-year combat tour in Iraq, 19 percent were found to have migraine, with migraine suspected in an additional 17 percent of soldiers

Full Article at: Soldiers Returning from Active Duty with Significant Rates of Migraine and Related Health Conditions

National Headache Foundation Launches ‘War Veterans Health Resource Initiative’ to Help Ease Transition Back to Civilian Life

CHICAGO, Nov. 9, 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Studies have shown that soldiers returning home from Iraq and Afghanistan have been found to have nearly double the rates of migraine compared to the general population, as well as higher incidences of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), depression and anxiety. Now, veterans returning from active duty with these conditions have access to a new program that will ease their transition back home. The National Headache Foundation (NHF) has launched the War Veterans Health Resource Initiative, which provides veterans with a single, comprehensive source for information on all aspects of post-deployment life, including headache and migraine.

Research has shown that migraine headaches often occur with conditions that specifically affect war veterans – PTSD, Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), and depression. In one study of 3,621 U.S. soldiers screened within 90 days of returning from a one-year combat tour in Iraq, 19 percent were found to have migraine, with migraine suspected in an additional 17 percent of soldiers (1). In comparison, the expected prevalence of migraine in the general population is approximately 12 percent (2). The study also found alarming rates of depression (32 percent), PTSD (22 percent), and anxiety (13 percent). In addition, approximately 70 percent of people who have suffered from a mild TBI complain of post-traumatic headache (3). Another study has also shown PTSD to potentially be a risk factor for chronic migraine headache (4).

“People need to understand that migraine is not just a bad headache; it is neuro-biological disease that often comes with severe nausea, blinding light sensitivity, extreme noise sensitivity, vertigo, and visual aura that makes handling weapons and heavy equipment nearly impossible. It is a disease that can take a physically fit and mentally tough young soldier and remove them from active duty,” said Dr. Marc Husid, director of the Walton Headache Center of Walton Rehabilitation Health System in Augusta, Georgia.”

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