Skip to navigation Skip to main content Skip to footer

Approved research

Identification of genetic variants and environmental factors influencing healthcare utilisation among migraine patients

Principal Investigator: Dr David Preiss
Approved Research ID: 54738
Approval date: June 9th 2020

Lay summary

Scientific rationale: One in nine people in the UK will suffer from migraine at some point in their life, a debilitating condition in which patients may experience throbbing headaches, heightened environmental sensitivity and nausea. Episodes lasting for more than 2 days are not uncommon. Consequently, the costs to the UK economy are estimated at £3.4 billion per year due to absenteeism and disability, of which £150 million are direct costs to the NHS. Previous research has found that genetic and environmental factors play an important role in determining the severity and manifestation of migraine. What remains unclear, however, is how these factors interact and determine what healthcare resources (including hospital visits, GP consultations, or medications) migraine patients will use or need. In Europe, it is estimated that only half of patients expected to benefit from physician consultation receive it, while those who do receive care are currently being offered widely varying treatment strategies. Aims and public health impact: Therefore, the aims of the research are as follows: 1. Identify genetic information (i.e. genetic variants) associated with healthcare utilisation (e.g. GP and hospital visits and medication use) among migraine patients. 2. Investigate clinical, demographic, socio-economic, lifestyle and cognitive characteristics influencing healthcare utilization among migraine patients. 3. Investigate how the factors identified above interact. Addressing the present variations in healthcare utilisation among migraine patients is essential to improving the management of disease and for decreasing the high burden and associated costs of migraine. Project duration: The project will take place from September 2018 until September 2022, i.e. over the course of 36 months. Access to data will be required for an additional 24 months after completion of the project.