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Survey Highlights Relationship Between IBS and Migraine

0 2 years ago

February 2, 2022

Gianna Melillo


New survey findings reveal a significant association between migraine and irritable bowel syndrome.

Findings of a nationwide survey conducted in Saudi Arabia revealed that patients with migraine were 4.13 times more likely to have irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and those with IBS were also more likely to experience migraine. Results were published in BioMed Research International.

Apart from throbbing pain, migraine can be accompanied by symptoms including nausea, photophobia, and phonophobia, whereas IBS is characterized by “abdominal pain that persists for more than 1 day per week in the previous 3 months and begins more than 6 months before diagnosis,” authors explained.

IBS is also one of the most common gut-brain connection disorders, with an estimated global prevalence between 3.8% and 9.2%.

Previous research has supported the claim that the gut-brain axis can substantially affect how neuronal disorders affect the gastrointestinal tract. Additional factors like serotonin, central and visceral hypersensitivity, and hereditary traits also serve as common pathogenesis pathways for both migraine and IBS.

To measure the prevalence of migraine and IBS in Saudi Arabia and elucidate the relationship between the 2 syndromes, researchers carried out an observational cross-sectional analytical study between March and June 2021.

All participants were at least 15 years old and completed an online self-administration survey. The survey was divided into 3 sections focusing on the patients’ personal and demographic information; their migraine symptoms, measured via the Migraine Screen Questionnaire (MS-Q), and severity, measured by the migraine severity (MIGSEV) scale; and IBS manifestations, measured using the IBS module of the Rome IV Diagnostic Questionnaire (R4DQ).


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