Sleep disorders seem to be highly prevalent among children with migraine and are associated with higher headache severity, according to a study published online Aug. 14 in the Journal of Clinical Medicine.
Alessandra Voci, from the Tor Vergata University of Rome, and colleagues examined the correlation between headache features and sleep in pediatric migraine. Parents of children and adolescents with migraine answered questions about headache characteristics and completed the Children’s Sleep Habits Questionnaire (CSHQ) and the Epworth Sleepiness Scale for Children and Adolescents.
The researchers found that sleep disorders were identified in 72.9 percent of 140 individuals; only 5.0 percent had already received a diagnosis. Statistically significantly higher headache frequency was seen for patients with sleep disorders, and the prevalence of migraine equivalents was higher. There was a correlation observed for higher CSHQ total score with higher frequency of severe attacks and lower acute drug efficacy. There were significant positive associations seen for delay of sleep onset, sleep duration, and night-wakings subscales with the frequency of migraine.
“Sleep disorders, though highly prevalent in pediatric migraine and frequently associated with a higher headache severity, [remain] underdiagnosed in many cases. Given the relationship between sleep and migraine characteristics, improving sleep quality could help to reduce migraine disability and vice versa,” the authors write. “Therefore, the clinical evaluation of pediatric patients with migraine should always include a careful analysis of their sleep habits in order to detect the presence of sleep disorders early.”