How do patients treat migraine?

A new report into migraine has found that GPs are still prescribing a lot of codeine, with more than half of sufferers obtaining the medicine to treat their condition

The report, released by Nurofen and Headache Australia, showed that people who suffer from migraines are still misunderstood, with over a quarter of respondents calling attacks “the perfect excuse not to show up for work”.

Three-quarters (73.6%) of the migraine sufferers surveyed reported that migraines impact their quality of life, while 73.2% said their happiness levels were affected – and 61.9% of Australians who identify as having migraine feel misunderstood.

The migraine sufferers said they were “constantly fearful” of how other people thought of them – particularly their boss, friends or partner.

And more than 60% said they wished non-sufferers understood that migraine is more than just a headache.

But almost one in 10 people surveyed said they thought that migraines were “fake,” while 16.4% said that migraines are not as bad as sufferers make them out to be.

Only 20.8% understood that migraine is a complex and multifactorial disorder – 28.3% of sufferers compared to 15.2% of non-sufferers.

Many of those who experienced migraine said that they were taking preventive measures to try and reduce attacks, such as drinking a lot of water (51.6%), having a good sleep routine (43.1%) and trying to manage their stress (34%).

When it comes to treatment, ibuprofen is the first line of treatment for 54.2% of sufferers.

However, plenty were seeing their GP for treatment, with 53.3% obtaining scripts for codeine, and 59.6% having another medication prescribed by their doctor.

The survey included 1,210 Australians who filled out an online quantitative survey, of whom 43% said they were a sufferer.

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