Researchers from the Department of Biomechanics, Medicine and Locomotor Apparatus Rehabilitation, University of Sao Paulo, Brazil set out to look at the contribution of neck pain to the overall disability of migraineurs. They hypothesized that disability due to neck pain is prevalent in migraine patients and its severity is influenced by the frequency of migraine attacks.
Participants in the study consisted of women with ages ranging from 18 to 65 years, with episodic migraine or chronic migraine. Episodic migraine patients were those with migraine, less than 15 days per month.
Neck disability was reported by 69% of those with episodic migraine and 92% of those with chronic migraine.
The study found that while individuals with chronic migraine are more likely to have disability due to neck pain than episodic migraineurs, the magnitude of disability at each activity is extremely similar between the groups. They found that neck pain is the “driver” of the disability. Individuals with chronic migraine are more likely to have neck pain than individuals with episodic migraine, but in the presence of pain the disability is similar.
While disability due to neck pain is highly prevalent in people with episodic and chronic migraine, those with chronic migraine are more likely to have disability due to cervical problems relative to those with episodic migraine. Headache The Journal of Head and Face Pain July/August 2014