Cardiovascular Disease Risk Profile in Japanese Midlife Migraineurs

Ken Ikeda, Yuji Kawase, Takanori Takazawa, Osamu Kano, Masaki Tamura, Yasuo Iwasaki


Background: Migraine is a common disabling disorder. A significant association between migraine and cardiovascular disease (CVD) has been reported in European and North American population. Little is known about CVD risk factors in Asian migraineurs. We aimed to clarify CVD risk profile of midlife migraineurs in Japan.  

Methods: A total of 596 subjects (409 women and 187 men) were diagnosed as migraine with aura (MA) and without aura (MO), according to the ICHD-II criteria. CVD risk factors were analyzed on body mass index, west circumference/height, smoking index, blood pressure (BP), serum lipid levels, fasting blood sugar, hemoglobin A1C, C-reactive protein, and a family history of CVD or stroke. Those factors were compared between migraineurs and 599 healthy controls matched by age and sex. 

Results: Mean age (SD) of migraineurs was 44.6 (9.4) years, 44.3 (9.4) in women and 45.2 (9.3) in men. Mean duration of migraine (SD) was 16.7 (11.4) years, 18.7 (12.2) in women and 13.3 (9.1) in men. Frequency and score of migraine attacks were higher significantly in women compared to men (P less than 0.01). As compared to controls, systolic and diastolic BP was significantly increased in female and male migraineurs (P less than 0.01). High-density lipoprotein cholesterol was decreased (P less than 0.01), and total cholesterol (TC) and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) were increased in sera of female and male migraineurs (P less than 0.01). Serum triglyceride levels were higher in male migraineurs (P less than 0.01). Migraineurs had higher frequency of relatives with CVD or stroke (P less than 0.01). With respect to migraine subtypes, MA and MO sufferers significantly elevated BP (P less than 0.05) and serum levels of TC and LDL-C (P less than 0.01).  

Conclusions: The present study indicated unfavorable CVD risk factors of BP, serum lipid levels and a family history of CVD or stroke in middle-aged migraineurs. The similarity of CVD risk profile was first confirmed between Japanese and Western migraineurs.



Migraine; Cardiovascular disease risk profile; Blood pressure; Lipid; Family history of cardiovascular disease or stroke 

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Journal of Neurology Research, bimonthly, ISSN 1923-2845 (print), 1923-2853 (online), published by Elmer Press Inc.        
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