The study found that 18% of lupus patients experienced headache at the onset of their disease with that number increasing to 58% after 10 years. While headaches were linked to a lower health-related quality of life, these episodes resolved over time independent of treatment specific to lupus and were not associated with disease activity or specific lupus autoantibodies.
Lupus is a systemic autoimmune disease where the immune system is overactive, attacking healthy joints and organs of the body including the nervous system. Studies suggest that up to 38% of neurological and psychiatric events in lupus patients are a result of the disease. However, the association between headache disorders and lupus is debatable, with prior research reporting prevalence rates that range from 24% to 72%.
Lead author, Dr. John Hanly from Dalhousie University and the Queen Elizabeth II Health Sciences Centre, Halifax, Nova Scotia Canada explains, "There is conflicting evidence that links headache, including migraine, and lupus disease activity. Much of the discrepancy in previous studies may be due the lack of uniform definition of headache, which is a common occurrence in the general population, especially among women."
The present study received core funding from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), and was performed by the Systemic Lupus International Collaborating Clinics (SLICC), a research network of 30 international medical centers. Dr. Hanly and colleagues recruited 1732 lupus patients between October 1999 and September 2011. Study subjects were assessed annually for headache and other neuropsychiatric events. The mean age of participants was roughly 35 years, with 89% of participants being female and 48% were Caucasian.
Findings indicate that at the commencement of the study nearly 18% of participants had headache—61% with migraine, 37% tension, 7% intractable non-specific, 3% cluster and 1% intracranial hypertension. After 10 years researchers found that the proportion of patients who ever reported a headache increased to 58% , with only 2% of subjects reporting a "lupus headache" that is described by the Systemic Lupus Erythematosus Disease Activity Index 2000 (SLEDAI) as a "severe, persistent headache: which may be migrainous, but unresponsive to narcotic analgesia."
Researchers found no association between headache and specific lupus autoantibodies or lupus medications such as steroids, antimalarials, and immunosuppressives. "While lupus patients with headaches reported lower quality of life, the majority of cases resolved on their own without lupus-specific therapies," concludes Dr. Hanly.
In a related editorial, Dr. Michael Lockshin, with Weill Cornell Medical College and Hospital for Special Surgery in New York, agrees, "Hanly et al. strongly suggest that lupus headache is not a sign of disease activity, but may be linked to other neurological manifestations. The current headache SLEDAI criterion no longer seems to be useful and should be discarded as a method for evaluating lupus flares."
This study is published in Arthritis & Rheumatism. Media wishing to receive a PDF of this article may contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Full citations: "Headache in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus: Results from a Prospective, International, Inception Cohort Study." John G. Hanly, Murray B. Urowitz, Aidan G. O'Keeffe, Caroline Gordon, Sang-Cheol Bae, Jorge Sanchez-Guerrero, Juanita Romero-Diaz, Ann E. Clarke, Sasha Bernatsky, Daniel J Wallace, E.M. Ginzler, David A. Isenberg, Anisur Rahman, Joan T. Merrill, M. Petri, Paul R. Fortin, D. D. Gladman, Barri J. Fessler, Graciela S. Alarcon, Ian N. Bruce, M.A. Dooley, Kristjan Steinsson, Munther A. Khamashta, Rosalind Ramsey-Goldman, Susan Manzi, Gunnar K. Sturfelt, Ola Nived, Asad A. Zoma, R.F. van Vollenhoven, Manuel Ramos-Casals, Cynthia Aranow, Meggan Mackay, Guillermo Ruiz-Irastorza, Kenneth C. Kalunian, Sam Lim, Murat Inanc, Diane L. Kamen, Christine A. Peschken, Soren Jacobsen, Chris Theriault, Kara Thompson and Vernon Farewell. Arthritis & Rheumatism; Published Online: October 28, 2013 (DOI: 10.1002/art.38106).
URL Upon Publication: http://doi.wiley.com/10.1002/art.38106
Editorial: "Splitting Headache." Michael D. Lockshin. Arthritis & Rheumatism; Published Online: October 28, 2013 (DOI: 10.1002/art.38108).
URL Upon Publication: http://doi.wiley.com/10.1002/art.38108
About the Author: To arrange an interview with Dr. John Hanly, please contact Allison Gerrard with Dalhousie University Faculty of Medicine at Allison.email@example.com or John Gillis with Capital Health JohnW.Gillis@cdha.nshealth.ca.
About the Journal
Arthritis & Rheumatism is an official journal of the American College of Rheumatology (ACR) and covers all aspects of inflammatory disease. The American College of Rheumatology is the professional organization whose members share a dedication to healing, preventing disability, and curing the more than 100 types of arthritis and related disabling and sometimes fatal disorders of the joints, muscles, and bones. Members include practicing physicians, research scientists, nurses, physical and occupational therapists, psychologists, and social workers. The journal is published by Wiley on behalf of the ACR. For more information, please visit http://wileyonlinelibrary.com/journal/art.
Wiley is a global provider of content-enabled solutions that improve outcomes in research, education, and professional practice. Our core businesses produce scientific, technical, medical, and scholarly journals, reference works, books, database services, and advertising; professional books, subscription products, certification and training services and online applications; and education content and services including integrated online teaching and learning resources for undergraduate and graduate students and lifelong learners.
Founded in 1807, John Wiley & Sons, Inc. (NYSE: JWa, JWb), has been a valued source of information and understanding for more than 200 years, helping people around the world meet their needs and fulfill their aspirations. Wiley and its acquired companies have published the works of more than 450 Nobel laureates in all categories: Literature, Economics, Physiology or Medicine, Physics, Chemistry, and Peace. Wiley's global headquarters are located in Hoboken, New Jersey, with operations in the U.S., Europe, Asia, Canada, and Australia. The Company's website can be accessed at http://www.wiley.com.
Dawn Peters | EurekAlert!
WAKE-UP provides new treatment option for stroke patients | International study led by UKE
17.05.2018 | Universitätsklinikum Hamburg-Eppendorf
First form of therapy for childhood dementia CLN2 developed
25.04.2018 | Universitätsklinikum Hamburg-Eppendorf
At the LASYS 2018, from June 5th to 7th, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) will be showcasing processes for the laser material processing of tomorrow in hall 4 at stand 4E75. With blown bomb shells the LZH will present first results of a research project on civil security.
At this year's LASYS, the LZH will exhibit light-based processes such as cutting, welding, ablation and structuring as well as additive manufacturing for...
There are videos on the internet that can make one marvel at technology. For example, a smartphone is casually bent around the arm or a thin-film display is rolled in all directions and with almost every diameter. From the user's point of view, this looks fantastic. From a professional point of view, however, the question arises: Is that already possible?
At Display Week 2018, scientists from the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Polymer Research IAP will be demonstrating today’s technological possibilities and...
So-called quantum many-body scars allow quantum systems to stay out of equilibrium much longer, explaining experiment | Study published in Nature Physics
Recently, researchers from Harvard and MIT succeeded in trapping a record 53 atoms and individually controlling their quantum state, realizing what is called a...
The historic first detection of gravitational waves from colliding black holes far outside our galaxy opened a new window to understanding the universe. A...
A team led by Austrian experimental physicist Rainer Blatt has succeeded in characterizing the quantum entanglement of two spatially separated atoms by observing their light emission. This fundamental demonstration could lead to the development of highly sensitive optical gradiometers for the precise measurement of the gravitational field or the earth's magnetic field.
The age of quantum technology has long been heralded. Decades of research into the quantum world have led to the development of methods that make it possible...
02.05.2018 | Event News
13.04.2018 | Event News
12.04.2018 | Event News
23.05.2018 | Life Sciences
23.05.2018 | Life Sciences
23.05.2018 | Physics and Astronomy