Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Sex Matters in Migraines

News Brief by Betty Fong

Women are twice as likely to suffer from chronic migraines as men. The brains of female versus male migraineurs are so different that their migraines should be considered “different diseases altogether.” A study exposed migraineurs to heat on the back of their hands while conducting MRI imaging of their brains. Heightened response in the amygdala, responsible for emotional processing, and posterior insula and precuneus, responsible for motor processing and pain perception, were observed in women than in men. Another study also discovered that the posterior insula does not seem to thin in women with chronic migraines, while it does for everyone else. Men’s and women’s brains are structurally different and treatment should be developed to specialize in dealing with both sexes’ migraines.

Reference: Bohannon, Cat. "Sex Matters in Migraines: Scientific American." Sex Matters in Migraines: Scientific American. Scientific American, 7 Oct. 2013. Web. 21 Oct. 2013.

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