Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Migraine, cardiovascular disease and higher lactic acid concentration in plasma

People with migraine, particularly those with aura (temporary visual or sensory disturbances before or during a migraine headache) , are at increased risk of death from coronary heart disease and stroke, according to research published this week on the the British Medical Journal. The study assessed the impact of mid-life migraine episodes in 18,725 men and women born between 1907 and 1935 who took part in the Reykjavik Study (set up in 1967 by the Icelandic Heart Association to study heart disease in Iceland). In total the research team explored over 470,000 person-years of data with a follow-up of 26 years. Their conclusion was that migraine with aura is an independent risk factor for cardiovascular and all cause mortality in men and women(1).
Interesting is that migraine suffers have higher lactic acid concentration in plasma (2), a decisive risk factor for cardiovascular disease, according to the acidity theory of atherosclerosis (3).
Carlos Monteiro
1.Larus S Gudmundsson, Ann I Scher, Thor Aspelund, Jon H Eliasson, Magnus Johannsson,Gudmundur Thorgeirsson, Lenore Launer and Vilmundur Gudnason. Migraine with aura and risk of cardiovascular and all cause mortality in men and women: prospective cohort study. Published 24 August 2010, doi:10.1136/bmj.c3966, BMJ 2010;341:c3966. Full free text at
2.Okada H, Araga S, Takeshima T, Nakashima K. Plasma lactic acid and pyruvic acid levels in migraine and tension-type headache. Headache. 1998 Jan;38(1):39-42.
3.Carlos ETB Monteiro, Acidic environment evoked by chronic stress: A novel mechanism to explain atherogenesis. Available from Infarct Combat Project, January 28, 2008 at

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