Washington, June 25 (ANI): Smoking more than 5 cigarettes a day can provoke migraine attacks, claims a new study published in the Journal of Headache and Pain.
The research prior to the work published in The Journal of Headache and Pain indicated that smoking could improve migraines by reducing anxiety, one of the factors that triggers an attack.
"This study is groundbreaking in Spain as there are few studies on this topic, and all are very biased. This is due to the complexity and need for prior training of the participants", Julio Pascual, one of the authors of this research and doctor at the Neurology Unit of Marqués de Valdecilla, University Hospital (Santander), explains to SINC.
One advantage of this study is that the sample used, 361 medicine students from the University of Salamanca, were fully aware what a migraine was.
The experts, who enquired about the presence or absence of migraine (and its characteristics) and whether or not they smoked, guaranteed the reliability of the results obtained, as most surveys for this type of study are done over the phone, randomly and in people without knowledge of the illness.
The results show that 16 percent of students fulfilled migraine criteria, while 20 percent smoked.
The percentage of smokers was higher (29 percent) in those who were also migraine sufferers and migraine frequency in those students who were migraine sufferers and smokers was clearly higher than in those who were non-smokers and migraine sufferers.
According to Pascual, "smoking is a precipitating factor of this type of headache, as the prevalence of active smokers is one third higher in migraine sufferers and there is a direct relationship between the number of cigarettes consumed and the frequency of migraine attacks".
The results of the interviews reveal that the migraine sets in after five daily cigarettes. Furthermore, although the percentage of those who smoked was higher in people with migraines, they smoked less than those who did not suffer migraines. (ANI)