A Study to Assess the Role of Stress in Migraine & Its Homeopathic Management

A Study to Assess the Role of Stress in Migraine & Its Homeopathic Management

ABSTRACT:   BACKGROUND – Migraine is defined as a class of disabling primary headache disorders, characterized by recurrent unilateral pulsatile headaches. The two major types are common migraine (without aura) and classic migraine (with aura or neurological symptoms). Migraine is three times more prevalent among females than in males.(1) Headache can be initiated or amplified by various triggers, including bright lights, sounds; hunger; stress; physical exertion, weather changes; hormonal fluctuations during menses; lack of or excess sleep; and alcohol.

AIMS AND OBJECTIVES– To effectively treat the cases of Stress-induced migraine with Homoeopathic management and to relieve the patients from their sufferings.

STUDY DESIGN– This was an open label non-randomized interventional prospective study of 36 patients who were enrolled in Government Homeopathic Medical College and Hospital, Bhopal. In this study the patient suffering from stress-induced migraine are treated with different indicated homoeopathic medicine on the basis of similimum and reportorial result. The migraine disability assessment questionnaire is used to analyze the intensity of symptoms before and after treatment. Follow up schedules on 7-15 days and as per need of the patient.

INCLUSION CRITERIA– v All people of 20 to 50 years of both genders, v Patient having mental and physical symptoms of migraine caused due to stress. vPatient willing to participate in the study. v Patient of all religion, different socio-economic status & different educational level.

RESULT – Over 1 year 40 patients were enrolled, out of whom 04 were excluded, 36 patients (male 08, female 28) were followed up and studied. A significant change in the score from the baseline was observed in 36 patients. The results indicated a definite relationship between stress & migraine. The results indicate a positive role of homoeopathic medicines and result finding indicates marked improvement in 07 (19%) cases, partial improvement in 23 (64%) cases while no improvement was seen in 6 (17%) cases. This study shows a significant reduction in the frequency and intensity of Stress-induced migraine. Homoeopathic drugs were found very effective in such cases. Most commonly indicated medicines were Natrum Mur, Silica, Nux vomica, and Calcarea carb, Belladonna, Lycopodium, Bryonia and Pulsatilla etc. Potency 200 was found to be most useful in these cases. The result was calculated by using paired t- test.

CONCLUSION– The present study has been encouraging where in 30 cases have improved. From this study it is evident that majority of cases of stress-induced migraines can be effectively relieved by Homeopathic treatment.

Thus Homeopathic treatment in stress-induced migraine is efficient and having least side effects. Hence, HOMEOPATHY has a good scope in the treatment and management of stress-induced migraines.

KEYWORDS– Stress, migraine, Homoeopathy.

INTRODUCTION:   Migraine is a primary episodic headache disorder which is often characterized by various combinations of neurological, autonomic and gastrointestinal changes in the body. It is one of the most common disorder and is the major cause of absenteeism from work and avoidance of social & personal activities.

Migraine is a severe headache type and can have a considerable impact on the daily

life of sufferers and affects between 17 per cent of women and 6 per cent of men, although

estimates vary. Accurate diagnosis of the different presentations of migraine is the foundation

of effective prescribing and management.

Diagnostic pointers for migraine:

1. Attacks last from 4 to 72 hours

2. Patients are usually symptom-free between attacks

3. Headache is at least two of the following:

a. Unilateral (on one side)

b. Pulsating

c. Moderate to severe

d. Aggravated by routine activities

4. Accompanying symptoms may include:

a. Photophobia (more sensitive to light)

b. Phonophobia (more sensitive to noise)

c. Nausea and Vomiting

“Migraine is actually more than a headache,” Niushen Zhang, M.D., clinical assistant professor and director of the Headache Fellowship Program at Stanford University, tells SELF. “Migraine is a collection of symptoms that mostly include moderate to severe headache, sensitivity to light and sound, nausea, and vomiting.”

While every person can have different migraine triggers but stress tops the list among them. According to the American Migraine Foundation, up to 70% of people with migraines cite stress as one of their triggers. Since everyone experiences stress at some or the other level, avoiding stress-induced migraines can feel pretty hard. Throw it in a global public health crisis/issues, and it feels downright impossible.

As many as 80% of people who get migraines list stress as a common trigger. Those people have reported high stress levels too. The stress-headache connection may be worse in females than males.

Anyone who lives with migraine knows it can have a significant and negative impact on quality of life.  Migraine symptoms can last for days and disrupt your ability to perform basic, daily tasks. In turn, this can affect the physical, emotional, and social aspects of life of the person. Even between attacks, migraine affects quality of life, especially when people try to limit daily activities to prevent another migraine attack.

In short-term stressful situations (like a last-minute work deadline), stress hormones like cortisol are released, which can impact the neural and chemical pathways believed to be associated with migraine, according to 2017 research published in The Journal of Headache and Pain. Alternately, chronic stress may cause structural changes in the brain that may potentially make migraine an attack worse—or even cause them to become chronic.

Stress and perhaps more commonly, the cessation of stress may bring on migraines. The

pharmacological basis of this is poorly understood. Moskowitz implicated parasympathetic

pathways in the pathogenesis of migraine. It is thought that as the individual relaxes; the

parasympathetic nervous system becomes progressively more dominant, resulting in headache.

Conversely therefore, headache is suppressed by the activity of the sympathetic nervous


The physical and neurological examinations as well as laboratory studies are most of the times normal and serve to exclude other more ominous causes of headache. Though there are many modes of treatment, no mode of treatment can give satisfactory result in all cases of migraine.

A lot of people are steering towards homeopathy as it is emerging to be best option for treatment & management of migraine. Homoeopathic constitutional medicine is prescribed in appropriate doses.

Some commonly used homeopathic medicines for migraine:

  • NATRUM MURIATICUM: Headache comes in the morning or at 10 am lasting until 3 pm or evening. The headache is periodical. It is preceded by partial blindness.Sensation as if there were little hammers beating in the skull similar to psorinum.
  • BELLADONNA:Violent hyperemia with throbbing carotids red face, intolerance of least noise or jar. Hemiopia, retinal blindness, slight paralysis of tongue even transitory hemiplegia.<before or during menses, Afternoon, evening. >in a dark room.
  • SEPIA:Migraine which had existed for years with profuse leucorrhoea has been cured with sepia. It is usually left sided and pain extends backwards. Deep stitching pain seems to be in the membranes of the brain. It is so severe that it extorts cries and frequently ends in vomiting. It is < by motion, noise, light or by thunderstorm > rest in dark room, sleep. It get worse during menstrual periods.
  • SANGUINARIA:Right sided headache. Pain comes from the occiput. They increases and decreases with the course of the sun, reaching their height at midday. The paroxysms and with profuse urination (sil, gels, Vera alb). They recover at every 9th day. Sanguinaria also has a menstrual headache, which attends a profuse flow in contrast to sepia, where the menses will be scanty.

IRIS VERSICOLOR: When the attack begins with blurring of sight (gels, Kali bic, Nat. Mur, psor, Lac.def) are attended with sour watery vomiting. Pain involves the infra orbital and dental nerves, along with stupid stunning headache. Mostly right sided. It is useful remedy for Sunday headache, which occurs   teachers, scholars, professors etc, in which a relief of the strain of the preceding six days; produces the head ache. In sick headache with continuous nausea, it is one of our most useful remedies, and when the headache are produced by eating sweet things, iris is probably the remedy. < Towards evening, from cold air, coughing, violent motion > from moderate motion, open air. 

About the author

Dr. Aditi Jain

Dr. Aditi Jain
P.G. Scholar (Department of psychiatry)
Batch – 2020-2021
Govt. Homoeopathic Medical College, Bhopal (M.P.)