Friday, June 12, 2009
I received a link today to a pubmed article on research on B12 and homocysteine reduction and migraine disability/pain. To summarize the abstract, a double blind study of patients with migraine with aura seems to indicate that migraine sufferers benefited from B vitamin supplementation. A certain genetic sequence was found to favor more benefit from the B supplementation than others. The responders to the therapy reduced their homocysteine levels (high levels of homocysteine have been linked to vascular problems) and also had a significant reduction in overall migraine disability.
There is also another pubmed abstract I remembered (and found again) where oral contraception is linked to lowered B vitamin and folic acid levels. I wonder if this is why some women get worse migraines while on oral contraception? They may already have high homocysteine levels and a greater need for B vitamin levels based on their genetic sequence, and the oral contraception creates additional problems. There also seems to be an associated comorbidity with depression due to vitamin B deficiency.
Last year I found a study done in Europe where headache pain was reduced by inhaled B12. I tried taking high doses sublingually last summer and part of the fall, and while I felt a small boost of energy it didn't do too much for my constant pain. I maybe got a small reduction in pain - rather hard to tell when your noggin hurts all the time. I am still supplementing with B12, just at lower doses, because - hey - it can't hurt!
I did notice that there were a lot of references on PubMed to articles written in the 1950's concerning B vitamins and headache treatment. I wonder if this is an old treatment that has gone by the wayside because we have such a cornucopia of drugs to try these days??
The Headache is at it again tonight - it is almost 1 AM. I have done a couple of hours of work from home this evening, and if I can't get to sleep I may do more. I think it is going to be a looooong June for me this year.