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Perceived stress index among school adolescents with primary headaches (tension-type headache or migraine)

Łukasz Pawlak, Bartosz Suliborski, Małgorzata Sawrasewicz-Rybak, Wojciech Split

Med Sci Tech 2008; 49(2): RA119-122

ID: 881599

Introduction: Psychosocial stress is one of the most important factors causing migraine and T-TH. Stressors of school environment are expected to be a probable cause of headaches. The aim of the study is to investigate the susceptibility to stress among adolescents with T-TH and migraine. Material and methods: A total of 735 students with T-TH including 524 girls and 211 boys, 316 students with migraine including 250 girls and 66 boys, 82 students with migraine and coexisting T-TH including 68 girls and 14 boys, and 1240 headache free students including 589 girls and 651 boys, aged 13-19 years, participated in the study. Stress influence was established according to the PSS-10 Cohen’s psychological scale of perceived stress, modified for a Polish society by Z. Juczyński. Results: The average perceived stress index in the group with T-TH was 27.9%; 28.6% for girls and 26.1% for boys, in the group with migraine - 20.0%; 20.6% for girls and 17.6% for boys, with migraine and coexisting T-TH 34.1%; 35.5% for girls and 27.5% for boys. In headache free patients it was 16.9%; 18.4% for girls and 15.5% for boys. The perceived stress index revealed an increase with age of patients, frequency of T-TH and number of migraine days. Conclusions: Increased vulnerability to stress is present among adolescents with T-TH and migraine. The correlation between increased stress level and age, gender and frequency of headache was found. (Clin Exp Med Lett 2008; 49(2): 119-122)

Keywords: Tension-Type Headache, migraine, primary headache, psychosocial stress, school adolescents

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