Proactive prevention strategies are key to prevent the chronification of migraine
Episodic migraine that is not effectively managed can progress to new-onset chronic migraine,1 said Professor Amaal Starling, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, Phoenix, AZ. Many factors contribute to a cycle of worsening migraine and migraine chronification, including medication overuse.2
Factors leading to migraine chronification include medication overuse
Individualize migraine prevention goals for each patient, said Professor Starling, and aim to bridge the gap between intervention goals and patient goals.
- The intervention goals aim to improve migraine, reduce the need for acute treatment, and improve quality of life.3
- The patient goals include freedom from pain and associated symptoms, fast onset of prevention with limited side effects, and minimal need for rescue medication.4
Proactive prevention strategies that align research findings with the patient’s needs and goals can prevent migraine chronification
Once an individual patient’s needs and goals have been determined, proactive prevention strategies that align research findings with these needs and goals can be implemented to prevent the cycle of worsening disease and medication overuse.
Key questions to ask patients
The Patient Global Impression of Change is a valuable migraine monitoring tool
Ask patients focused proactive questions and actively listen to their responses to assess patient-reported outcomes, disease burden, and the overall patient experience of migraine said Professor Robert Cowan, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, CA.
The Patient Global Impression of Change (PGIC) is a straightforward and valuable migraine monitoring tool, he said. It is a one-question — “Since your last visit, how would you describe the change (if any) in your migraine and its impact?” —self-reported assessment of change.
Understand the patient’s needs and incorporate them into a proactive, preventive care plan
Professor Robert Cowan suggested that other useful patient-centered questions to consider asking to inform treatment are:
- Since your last visit, how would you describe the change (if any) in your migraine and its impact?
- How many headache-free days have you had over the past 3 months?
- Over the past 3 months, what has been the most bothersome symptom associated with your migraine?
- What would you most like to accomplish during your visit today?
Both experts emphasized that an effective partnership with a patient with migraine that supports the patient’s treatment goals is key. This is achieved by understanding the patient’s needs and incorporating them into a proactive, preventive care plan.
Educational financial support for this Industry Therapeutic Update was provided by Lundbeck.