One study, conducted with Stephen D. Silberstein MD, the director of Jefferson Headache Center in Philadelphia, PA, compared patterns of medication (painkiller) overuse (MO*) in UK and USA groups of people with migraine and found that in the UK, where participants were primarily recruited from the general population, around one-fifth were overusing acute headache medications. In the US, where recruitment was mainly through physicians, medication overuse was found in a higher proportion (29%) of participants and was more likely to involve use of opioids. MO was as likely in people with episodic migraine as in those with chronic migraine. MO can lead to increasing frequency of headaches and progression from episodic to chronic headaches and its identification and treatment is a clear medical need.
Stephen Donoghue, the VP of Clinical Development of Curelator Inc. explains, “Curelator Headache is the first digital application to present data demonstrating an ability to identify migraineurs who may be overusing pain medication: these individuals may be at risk of worsening their condition through this often inadvertent overuse. Our hope is that the data we are collecting can be applied to guide successful intervention strategies.”
Other presentations include a study showing that individuals often suspect many factors (e.g. diet, weather, moods, etc.) as triggers of their migraines. However when the associations between these factors and attacks are statistically determined from daily patient data capture and analytics platform (Curelator Headache™) data, in any individual few of these are actually shown to be potential triggers. Many suspected factors actually have no association with migraines and may be unnecessarily avoided.
Also presented is a new analytical method to analyse which factors affect frequency versus severity of migraine attacks: surprisingly, data showed that these factors differ in individuals. This application may be of particular relevance to chronic migraine patients, some with almost continuous headaches, and for whom, therefore, identification of factors associated with modifying severity is critical.
* MO as defined by ICHD-3beta criteria
Curelator is a patient-centric digital platform that enables patients, clinicians and healthcare providers to optimize individual therapeutic pathways in chronic diseases with episodic attacks.