Migraine is a Very Penalising and Misunderstood Disease

Enxaqueca penalizadora mal compreendida

“Migraine is a very penalising disease in the life of people and still quite misunderstood by society”, highlighted Raquel Gil-Gouveia, coordinator of Hospital da Luz Lisboa Headache Centre, in TV show “Edição da Manhã”, at SIC Channel, last July 9. The neurologist was invited to comment the preliminary conclusions of a survey divulged that day, indicating that 60% of people with severe migraine are absent from work one week a month.

This is a survey englobing 11 thousand people in a total of 31 countries, including Portugal. “The respondents are patients with high impact of the disease and already having taken medication to reduce the frequency of the migraine crises”, explained Raquel Gil-Gouveia. She also reminded that the disease is characterised by the recurrence of crises – with intense headaches and other symptoms associated, such as vomits, lack of concentration, reasoning limitations and the “sensation that the head is about to explode” –, which limits considerably patients in their daily life, thence the absence from work.

“Other studies indicate that the unemployment rate is higher among these individuals, also registering more divorces”, she added. The two main causes of migraine are identified: genetic (those who have relatives with the disease have more probability of developing it too) and hormonal (thence the disease affecting more women than men).“This is a disease for life, that has no cure, but has treatment, enabling to reduce the intensity and periodicity of the crises”, stressed Raquel Gil-Gouveia.

You can watch the intervention here.