Data_Sheet_1_Investigating the Effects of COVID-19 Quarantine in Migraine: An Observational Cross-Sectional Study From the Italian National Headache R.DOCX (25.01 kB)
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Data_Sheet_1_Investigating the Effects of COVID-19 Quarantine in Migraine: An Observational Cross-Sectional Study From the Italian National Headache Registry (RICe).DOCX

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posted on 10.11.2020, 04:21 authored by Marianna Delussi, Eleonora Gentile, Gianluca Coppola, Addolorata Maria Pia Prudenzano, Innocenzo Rainero, Grazia Sances, Chiara Abagnale, Valeria Caponnetto, Francesco De Cesaris, Ilaria Frattale, Elena Guaschino, Andrea Marcinnò, Raffaele Ornello, Francesca Pistoia, Alessia Putortì, Maria Elena Roca, Fausto Roveta, Chiara Lupi, Maria Trojano, Francesco Pierelli, Pierangelo Geppetti, Simona Sacco, Marina de Tommaso

Background: Previous studies during SARS and Ebola pandemics have shown that quarantine is associated with several negative psychological effects, such as post-traumatic stress symptoms, confusion, and anger. These conditions may affect the course of many diseases, including migraine. Although it is possible that the quarantine measures for the current COVID-19 pandemic affect migraine burden, no information is currently available on this issue.

Aim: In this study, we aimed to: (1) explore the possible changes in migraine frequency, severity, and days with acute medication intake during quarantine period; (2) evaluate possible differences in migraine outcomes in consideration of lifestyle changes, emotions, pandemic diffusion, and COVID-19 infection.

Methods: We interviewed patients who were included in the observational Italian Headache Registry (Registro Italiano Cefalee, RICE), retrospectively collecting information on main headache features, lifestyle factors, emotions, individual infection status, and perception of COVID-19 for 2 months before (pre-quarantine) and after the beginning of the quarantine (quarantine). Inclusion criteria were: age > 18, diagnosis of migraine without aura, migraine with aura and chronic migraine, last in-person visit more than 3 months preceding the beginning of quarantine.

Results: A total of 433 migraine subjects agreed to be interviewed. We found an overall reduction in headache frequency (9.42 ± 0.43 days with headache vs. 8.28 ± 0.41) and intensity (6.57 ± 0.19 vs. 6.59 ± 0.21) during the quarantine, compared to pre-quarantine. There was a correlation between improvement and number of days of stay-at-home. When results were stratified for geographic area, we found a tendency toward worsening of headache frequency in northern Italy. Disgust regarding viral infection corresponded to a minor improvement in migraine.

Conclusions: Migraine patients showed a mild improvement of migraine features, probably attributable to resilient behavior toward pandemic distress. Disgust regarding the contagion whereas potentially favoring defensive behavior, could potentially worsen migraine. The spontaneous limitation of migraine burden during quarantine could favor patient follow-up via the use of telemedicine visits, reliable diaries, and frequent remote contacts.