Raja Sawaya, Nesreen Jaafar, Tarek Chedid
Background: Patients with migraine experience increased sensitivity to external stimuli. Quantitative sensory testing (QST) measures thermal perception and thermal pain thresholds in migraine patients.
Aims: The purpose of our study is to measure thermal and pain perception and thresholds using QST in patients with migraine, and to evaluate the effect of abortive versus prophylactic treatment.
Material and Methods: We performed a case-control study comparing thermal perception and thermal pain thresholds using QST in 25 migraine subjects compared to controls. We compared patients on abortive therapy (16 patients) to those on prophylactic therapy (9 patients).
Results: We found that migraine patients in the Lebanese population are less sensitive to all thermal modalities on QST interictally, which is different than reported studies. Migraine patients had significantly higher heat perception threshold and lower cold perception threshold over the hand and higher heat pain threshold and lower cold perception threshold over the face. Migraine patients on prophylactic therapy were more sensitive than those on abortive therapy.
Conclusion: Migraine patients were less sensitive to thermal and pain sensation compared to published reports. Patients on prophylactic therapy showed lower QST thresholds compared to those on abortive therapy suggesting that the abortive treatment suppressed their hypersensitivity.