Study Discovers Link Between Colic and Migraines in Children
Colic is a condition in which perfectly healthy infants will cry and display distress although there seems to be no medical explanations. Although colicky infants are considered to be healthy, a new study suggests that suffering from colic might be tied to migraines. A study done by Dr. Luigi Titomanlio from Paris Diderot University and his colleagues found a link between children who suffered from migraines and required hospitalization and colic conditions during infancy.
The researchers analyzed data from 208 children who suffered from migraines, 471 children with minor but non-headache trauma and 120 children with minor headaches that were not considered to be migraines. The information was compiled from medical records of children from the ages of six to 18 who were hospitalized in 2012. The researchers discovered that over 70 percent of children and teenagers who sought hospitalization for migraines in France and Italy were colicky infants. The team concluded that children who were hospitalized for migraines were six to seven times more likely to have suffered from colic as infants when compared to children who came to the emergency room for trauma. The researchers found that children with minor headaches that were not considered to be migraines where also less likely to have been a colicky baby.
"This study is another piece of evidence suggesting that infant colic may be an early manifestation of migraine," commented Dr. Amy Gelfand, a child neurologist at the University of California, San Francisco Headache Center. Roughly one in 10 children suffers from migraines, which occur when the blood vessels in the brain become inflamed. Researchers now believe that colicky infants might also be suffering from similar problems, and thus, the migraines they experience are making them cry. Furthermore, people who suffer from migraines tend to be sensitive to light and sound, and since infants are already sensitive to these two factors, colicky infants might be experiencing doubled the pressure, leading to even more crying.
Despite these findings, which confirmed previous studies linking colic and migraines in children, the researchers acknowledged that an important study that needs to be done is a long-term study that would ideally find even stronger evidence between colic and migraines. If that can be done, finding new treatments that can alleviate colicky infants would be ideal.
The study was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.