Original

The Journal of Headache and Pain

, Volume 12, Issue 1, pp 97-103

Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.

Risk factors of migraine-related brain white matter hyperintensities: an investigation of 186 patients

  • Anita TrauningerAffiliated withDepartment of Neurology, University of Pécs
  • , Eszter Leél-ŐssyAffiliated withDepartment of Neurology, University of Pécs
  • , David Olayinka KamsonAffiliated withDepartment of Neurology, University of Pécs
  • , László PótóAffiliated withInstitute of Bioanalysis, University of Pécs
  • , Mihály AradiAffiliated withDiagnostic Center
  • , Ferenc KövérAffiliated withDiagnostic Center
  • , Marianna ImreAffiliated withDiagnostic Center
  • , Hedvig KomáromyAffiliated withDiagnostic Center
  • , Szilvia Erdélyi-BotorAffiliated withDepartment of Neurology, University of Pécs
    • , Ágnes PatzkóAffiliated withDepartment of Neurology, University of Pécs
    • , Zoltán PfundAffiliated withDepartment of Neurology, University of Pécs Email author 

Abstract

Brain white matter hyperintensities are more prevalent in migraine patients than in the general population, but the pathogenesis and the risk factors of these hyperintensities are not fully elucidated. The authors analyzed the routine clinical data of 186 migraine patients who were referred to the Outpatient Headache Department of the Department of Neurology, Medical School, University of Pécs, Hungary between 2007 and 2009: 58 patients with white matter hyperintensities and 128 patients without white matter hyperintensities on 3 T MRI. Significant associations between the presence of white matter hyperintensities and longer disease duration (14.4 vs. 19.9 years, p = 0.004), higher headache frequency (4.1 vs. 5.5 attacks/month, p = 0.017), hyperhomocysteinemia (incidence of hyperintensity is 9/9 = 100%, p = 0.009) and thyroid gland dysfunction (incidence of hyperintensity is 8/14 = 57.1%, p = 0.038) were found. These data support the theory that both the disease duration and the attack frequency have a key role in the formation of migraine-related brain white matter hyperintensities, but the effects of comorbid diseases may also contribute to the development of the hyperintensities.

Keywords

Migraine White matter hyperintensity Disease duration and attack frequency Stroke risk factors