Significance of fatigue in patients with migraine

J Clin Neurosci. 2018 Apr;50:69-73. doi: 10.1016/j.jocn.2018.01.032. Epub 2018 Feb 1.


Fatigue is often stated as a headache trigger or migraine-specific symptom. We investigated predictors of fatigue and its impact on quality of life (QOL) in patients with migraine. Patients with migraine were recruited from a headache clinic and completed psychosomatic instruments, including the 12-item Allodynia Symptom Checklist (ASC-12), the Migraine Disability Assessment Scale (MIDAS), the Patients Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9), the Generalized Anxiety Disorder-7 (GAD-7), the Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS), the Insomnia Severity Index (ISI), the Fatigue Severity Scale (FSS), and Migraine-Specific Quality of Life Questionnaire (MSQ). Two hundreds twenty-six patients with migraine were eligible for the study. Pathologic fatigue was manifested in 133 patients (58.8%). The FSS score was significantly associated with age, age of onset, the Visual Analog Scale (VAS) depicting headache intensity, photophobia, phonophobia, and the scores of the ASC-12, the MIDAS, the ESS, the ISI, the PHQ-9 and the GAD-7. The strongest predictor for the FSS was the PHQ-9 (β = 0.432, p < .001), followed by age (β = -0.169, p = .002), the ISI (β = 0.151, p = .016), and the VAS (β = 0.139, p = .018). There was an inverse correlation between the FSS score and three dimensional scores of the MSQ (p < .001). Appropriate interventions for depression, insomnia, and headache intensity are likely to lessen fatigue and improve QOL.

Keywords: Depression; Fatigue; Headache intensity; Insomnia; Migraine; QOL.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Depression / psychology
  • Fatigue / complications*
  • Fatigue / psychology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Migraine Disorders / complications*
  • Migraine Disorders / psychology
  • Quality of Life / psychology*
  • Sleep Initiation and Maintenance Disorders / psychology
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Young Adult