Migraine Pearls or Onions? 10/23/12

PearlsOrOnions125An amazing amount of great information about Migraine and other headache disorders can be found on the Internet. Unfortunately, an amazing amoung of MISinformation can be found as well.

The information we find online can be bright, polished, and valuable — like a pearl — or it can be... well, rough and stinky — like an onion.

This feature of my blog, "Migraine Pearls or Onions?" highlights both the gleaming "Migraine Pearls" I come across and the malodorous "Migraine Onions."

Pearl100Today's Pearl goes to The Migraine Project . Spearheaded by award-winning filmmakers Susanna Styron and Jacki Ochs, The Migraine Project is developing Out of My Head, a feature documentary film that takes a good, hard, real look at Migraine and living with it. Thsi important film is meant to inspire greater compassion for Migraineurs and increased support for research within the scientific community.

They also do some great Tweeing, and through Twitter, brought today's Onion to my attention!

Onion100Today's Onion goes to The Florida Agenda and Andy Kress for the article Migraine No More. At the end of the article, Kress's credentials are listed as certified fitness trainer, yoga instructor, and nutritional counselor. He lists no sources for his information, and I see nothing on the site that would indicate that the content is physician reviewed.

This is undoubtedly one of the most ill-informed articles about Migraine that I have ever seen. It's just plain shameful that such blatant misinformation has been published.

Not only is there a great deal of misinformation in this article, much of it is of the "blame-the-patient" variety that not only adds to the miasma of bad information, but also adds to the stigma surrounding Migraine.

Allow me to quote and rebut some of the more egregious sections:

  • "...being under the harsh grip of this painful tension headache..."
    Make up your mind, already. Are you talking about Migraines or tension-type headaches? Migraines are most definitely not tension headaches. Tension-type headache is an entirely different headache disorder.
  • "... does not have to be so for intelligent, methodical, and perfection-minded people who suffer from it."
    So, what's he saying? That only this type of person has Migraines, or that other people have to continue suffering?
  • "Ironically, migraine sufferers often unknowingly bring this problem on themselves through their busy daily lifestyles. Most cases are caused by low blood sugar, infection, allergies, over-intake of certain drugs and chemicals, over working, low energy from loss of appetite, improper sleep and over-consumption of tobacco, alcohol, and sex."
    First of all, many of us DO know our triggers and avoid them assiduously. However, the author failed to mention many triggers that are unavoidable such as barometric pressure changes, hormonal fluctuations, and others.
  • "Having a balanced diet along with a balanced lifestyle is a sure-fire way to eliminate the unbearable symptoms that migraines can cause."
    If only! There are many, many Migraineurs who work diligently to have a very balanced diet and as balanced a lifestyle as Migraine permits, but that has NOT eliminated their "unbearable symptoms." This is oversimplification at its worst.

I could go on, but I'll spare you. You get the idea by now. My plea to Mr. Kress is that he either not write about Migraine or learn a bit about it before he writes more. If I were a betting person, I'd bet that he wouldn't appreciate someone publishing articles full of misinformation about fitness, yoga, or nutrition.

There is a place to post comments about this article if you're so inclined. Maybe a few comments would encourage them to correct the article. Who knows? It's happened before on other sites.

Live well,

 

 

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Page copy protected against web site content infringement by Copyscape© Teri Robert, 2012.
Last updated October 23, 2012.


Migraine Pearls or Onions? 5/7/12

PearlsOrOnions125Do you get much of your Migraine information online? You'll definitely find it in abundance! The question is whether it will be accurate and unbiased.

Online information can be bright, polished, and valuable - like a pearl - or it can be well... rough and stinky - like an onion.

This feature, "Migraine Pearls or Onions?" highlights both the gleaming pearls I come across and the malodorous "Migraine Onions."

Pearl100Today's Pearl goes to Kerrie Smyres for her blog, The Daily Headache. Despite having chronic Migraine, Kerrie has been writing The Daily Headache since 2005 and has covered a wide range of topics from fluorescent light bulbs to surgery for Migraines... from good books to bad days. Every Migraineur can identify with Kerrie, and she writes in a style that makes her blog easy to read and follow. What really clinched the Pearl for her is that Kerrie's posts are always well researched and accurate. Thank you, Kerrie!

Onion100On the opposite end of the spectrum from Kerrie's well researched and accurate posts, we find Migraine articles on NewsOlio.com, specifically, Migraine food remedies - Better quality of life for migraine sufferers through foods, and Are migraines common in kids, and how to treat them? Neither of these articles is terribly accurate. The second one is full of outdated terminology AND theories. NewsOlio is an odd site. Neither sources nor authors are listed for any of the content, but there is a medical disclaimer. So, they're not going to tell us who wrote it, or where they got their information, but they're going to be darned sure to cover their hind ends with a disclaimer anyway. The fact that you can't tell who write the articles or what sources they use is enough to tell you that it's not dependable content in the first place. So, the rough, stinky onion goes to NewsOlio, and particularly those two articles.

Yes, there's a great deal of Migraine information online, but be picky about the sites you choose. Articles that are informational in nature as opposed to opinion or commentary should list sources for their information. You should be able to find who wrote the content and when. If not, move on.

Live well,

PurpleRibbonTiny
 

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© Teri Robert, 2012
Last updated May 7, 2012.


Migraine Blog Cited on Fox News Watch

MicheleBachmann100 If you haven't seen or heard any of the news stories about Michele Bachmann's Migraine over the last week, you must have been asleep. The stories have been pretty impossible to miss.

You'd probably think that news story after news story about Migraine diseae would make me happy, BUT there have been so many statements, accusations, and speculations that were so off-target that the coverage has been frustrating instead.

Even after Bachmann released a letter from Dr. Brian Monahan, the attending physician of Congress, saying that her Migraines are "infrequent," some of the media continued to report about her "chronic" Migraines. Rather than raising awareness and educating audiences about Migraine, too much of the coverage has perpetuated misunderstandings and stigma.

Saturday, on Fox News Watch, there was an interesting conversation about the coverage - when it's appropriate to use anonymous sources, if this was indeed a valid news story, and more. They also mentioned women who were writing about the issue and mentioned my blog on MyMigraineConnection. Here's a video of that program...

What do you think of how Bachmann's Migraines have been handled by the media? Please post a comment and tell me. (Please focus your comments on the coverage of her Migraines, not on politics and whether she'd make a good President.)

Live well,


 

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Get the latest Migraine and headache news, informational articles, tips for living well, and more in my free weekly newsletter. To subscribe, CLICK HERE.

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Page copy protected against web site content infringement by Copyscape

© Teri Robert, 2011
Last updated July 25, 2011