1 2008 Vol: 66(3A). DOI: 10.1590/S0004-282X2008000400011

Trigger factors in migraine patients

BACKGROUND: Migraine is a chronic neurological disease with several trigger factors, including dietary, hormonal and environmental factors. PURPOSE: To analyse precipitating factors in a sample of migraine patients. METHOD: Two hundred consecutive migraine patients were interviewed about possible trigger factors for migraine attacks. RESULTS: Most patients showed at least one dietary trigger, fasting was the most frequent one, followed by alcohol and chocolate. Hormonal factors appeared in 53% , being the pre-menstrual period the most frequent trigger. Physical activities caused migraine in 13%, sexual activities in 2.5% and 64% reported emotional stress a trigger factor. 81% related some sleep problem as a trigger factor. Regarding environmental factors, smells were reported by 36.5%. CONCLUSION: Trigger factors are frequent in migraine patients, its avoidance may decrease headache frequency and also improve patients' quality of life.

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