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Headache. 2014 Mar;54(3):459-71. doi: 10.1111/head.12297. Epub 2014 Feb 11.

Obesity and headache: Part II--potential mechanism and treatment considerations.

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  • 1School of Medicine - Neurology, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD, USA.


Obesity and headache are both associated with a substantial personal and societal impact, and epidemiologic studies have consistently identified a positive association between obesity and headache in general, as well as obesity and migraine specifically (see part I). In the current manuscript, we will discuss the potential mechanisms for the migraine-obesity association, with a focus on the central and peripheral pathophysiological pathways which overlap between migraine and those modulating the drive to feed. We then discuss surgical, behavioral, and pharmacological treatment considerations for overweight and obese migraineurs as well as for those with idiopathic intracranial hypertension. We close by briefly discussing where future research may be headed in light of this data.

© 2014 American Headache Society.


body mass index; headache; migraine; obesity

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