Migraine is a neurological disease characterized by recurrent moderate to severe headaches often in association with a number of autonomic nervous system symptoms. Associated symptoms may include nausea, vomiting, and sensitivity to light, sound, or smell. The pain is generally made worse by physical activity. Migraines are believed to be due to a mixture of environmental and genetic factors. It is, however, believed to be a neurovascular disorder.
Sixty-eight percent of medical students had headache. The prevalence of migraine in the whole cohort was 28%; however, of the headache group, migraine constituted 42%. There was a female preponderance. One-fourth of the students had weekly or daily attacks with 31% students reporting increase in their headache intensity and frequency.
Most patients in the audit population (60%) were in the lowest band of triptan usage (1-36 tablets prescribed over 12 months); 7% had moderate usage (37-53 tablets). A minority of patients appeared to be taking triptans in higher quantities: about 15% of patients had been prescribed 54-94 triptan tablets over a year, 9% had received prescriptions for 95-149 tablets and 7% had received prescriptions for 150 or more tablets.