Primary Care Physician
Dr. Orrange received her BA in Biology at the University of California, San Diego, and a Masters Degree in Health Sciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Public Health. She received her MD from the USC Keck School of…
The True Healthcare Cost of Headaches
Posted in Migraine Headac... by Dr. Sharon Orrange on Jan 18, 2013
A recent study in Europe revealed some startling results about the healthcare costs associated with headache. It now raises the question: if the cost of headache is so high, why does it get the short end of the stick with respect to research?

It turns out, funding for headache research and therapy does get the short end of the stick in European neurology.

In this recent study, the authors compared the cost of major headache disorders: migraine, tension-type headache and medication-overuse headache with other neurologic and psychiatric conditions.

The average cost per European with a headache disorder in 2010 was 285 euros which is a small amount compared with the 30,000 euros per patient with a neuromuscular disorder. HOWEVER, headache disorders are so common that the total annual cost was calculated at 43.5 billion euros.

Compare 43 billion euros (for headache) to other disabling neurologic conditions:
• Epilepsy 13.8 billion euros

• Multiple sclerosis 14.6 billion euros

• Parkinson’s disease 13.9 billion euros

• Traumatic brain injury 33 billion euros

What this means is that headaches cost more than epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, and Parkinson’s disease combined. Yet, we should take notice that little research and resources are dedicated to treating headache.

When the authors of this study included reduced productivity at work from headache, the cost among 18- to 65-year-olds in the European Union was 173 billion euros.

Migraine is the real problem accounting for sixty-four percent of the annual cost of headache among European adults, followed by 21% for medication-overuse headache and 12% for tension-type headache.

Many of you suffer from chronic headaches. So I ask you, is headache being forgotten?

Dr O.


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CONDITIONS AND COMMUNITIES: Chronic Pain  •  Migraine Headaches  •  Myofascial Pain Syndrome  •  TMJ

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Alopathy has only treatment but no cure for head related diseases, for cure you simple need simply need to activate your Third eye and Crown Chakra.
By james585  Jan 23, 2013
For me, after having suffered with pre-menstral migraines for years, I found that anything I can do to strengthen my bones also seems to prevent the migraines.

I have osteopenia and have been taking either Actonel or Fosamax for years. Once I tried the weekly dose of Actonel, but had a migraine just as the week was drawing to a close. I have also found that trying to consume extra manganese (such as is added to Strawberry Quik,) calcium, vitamin D or standing in direct sunlight with my arms exposed for less than 5 minutes, would seem to prevent the migraine or stop one which had just started.

Researchers ought to look into that sort of thing.
By Fern RL  Jan 21, 2013
I used to get disabling headaches when I was working. Usually, the only cure was to have someone drive me to the ER, get an injection of heavy-duty painkiller plus something to stop the vomiting that always came with it, and then just drive home and sleep. I would usually be OK the next day, but there was a time when I might get three of these things in a single week. This does NOT look good on your work record, but there was absolutely NO question of even trying to drive, let alone trying to work when I might have to throw up at any moment - never mind the terrible pain.

Funny thing. The headaches STOPPED when I retired. I have not have a single one in the TEN YEARS since retirement. Does that say anything about the job environment???
By madbookworm  Jan 19, 2013
YES! I have had medications, CAT scans, MRIs, all but literally thrown at me in response to my daily, chronic headaches. I have a shunt now, but I still suffer from headaches everyday. While they are not as severe as the ones I had pre-shunt, nothing a doctor has done has ever helped for longer than a couple hours. A couple doctors have told me that I just have to "learn to live with them." For the most part, I have, but it's not fair to me that they don't at least try to figure out why I have them all the time, and what I could do (aside from what has already been tried) to alleviate them. I read somewhere once that back pain and headaches are among the top reasons people go to emergency rooms. This should be a red flag to physicians and scientists to put more effort into getting right down to the root cause of headaches. I have given up my quest to figure out why I have them all the time as it seems that my doctors just don't care.
By squeaker87  Jan 18, 2013
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