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Aust N Z J Med. 1998 Oct;28(5):627-32.

Prevalence and vascular associations with migraine in older Australians.

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Department of Ophthalmology, University of Sydney, Westmead Hospital.



Migraine is a common disorder with recently described vascular associations, yet there are few Australian population-based data describing migraine prevalence.


To assess the prevalence and vascular associations with lifetime past history of typical migraine headache in a representative sample of older Australians.


The Blue Mountains Eye Study examined 3654 permanent residents aged 49 or older living in two postcode areas, west of Sydney (82.4% participation) during 1992-4. A structured interview was administered, including questions about past or present history of typical migraine. The diagnosis was consistent with International Headache Society criteria.


A lifetime past history of typical migraine was given by 17% of participants, including 22% of women and 10% of men, a female:male ratio of 2.3:1. A marked trend for declining lifetime migraine frequency with increasing age was found for both sexes. Modest statistically significant associations were found with vascular disease history, after multivariate adjustment, which included vascular risk factors. These associations were stronger in men than in women. Among men, typical migraine was significantly associated with history of angina, odds ratio (OR) 2.0, acute myocardial infarction (OR 1.9) and stroke (OR 2.2). Among women, statistically significant associations were present only with history of myocardial infarct (OR 1.8).


These data indicate similar prevalence rates for lifetime typical migraine history in a representative sample of older Australians, compared to recent US and Canadian populations. Modest, statistically significant associations between typical migraine and past history of vascular disease were found, with the strongest associations found in men.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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