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Tummy Troubles? You Might Be Facing Headaches, Too

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Key Takeaways

  • Adults with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) have a higher prevalence of migraine or severe headache?
  • The age-adjusted prevalence of migraine or severe headache was 15.4% overall, while the prevalence of IBD was 1.2%.
  • Compared with those without IBD, participants with IBD had a higher age-adjusted migraine or severe headache prevalence.

HealthDay News–Adults with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) have a higher prevalence of migraine or severe headache, according to a study published in Headache: The Journal of Head and Face Pain.

Yong Liu, M.D., from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, and colleagues analyzed data from 60,436 U.S. adults aged 18 years and older participating in the 2015 and 2016 National Health Interview Survey. The correlation between IBD status and migraine or severe headache was examined and stratified by levels of selected characteristics.

The researchers found that the age-adjusted prevalence of migraine or severe headache was 15.4% overall, while the prevalence of IBD was 1.2%. Compared with those without IBD, participants with IBD had a higher age-adjusted migraine or severe headache prevalence (28.1% 15.2%). After controlling for all other covariates, the correlation of migraine or severe headache with IBD remained significant overall (adjusted prevalence ratio, 1.59) and within the levels of most other selected characteristics.

“To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report to demonstrate an association between self-reported physician-diagnosed IBD and recent severe headache or migraine in a nationally representative sample of U.S. civilian, noninstitutionalized adults,” the authors write. “Health care providers might assess migraine among IBD patients who may benefit from the treatment and prevention of migraine or severe headache.”

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