Good morning to all of my extended Migraine and headache family! It doesn't seem possible that the holiday season has rolled around again, but here it is.
From everything I'm seeing and hearing, I can tell that many of you are having Migraine and headache problems, as am I. You know my very fondest wish is that we could all be instantly and miraculously cured. Since that's unlikely to happen any time soon, my next fondest wish is that each and every one of you find the right doctor to partner with and find successful treatment.
It's not something I've said much about, but my own Migraines have increased since other health issues forced me to cut back on some of my preventive medications last fall, and I'm back to chronic Migraines again. Last week, my Migraine specialist and I took the plunge, and he had the pleasure of adding 31 more little holes to my head in the form of Botox injections. We shall see how that does.
As has become my holiday tradition, I've made donations in honor of the Migraine and headache community as my holiday gift to you. This year, those donations went to The American Migraine Foundation and Clusterbusters.
The American Migraine Foundation has just sent a letter about their plans for next year, and I'd like to share that letter with you:
In this holiday season, as migraine clinicians and researchers who have dedicated our careers to patients disabled with this disease, it's hard not to think of those who will suffer through the holidays and our obligation to contribute to alleviating this suffering. There is little doubt that among our holiday wishes as clinicians the top one is that this time next year we might be able to tell our patients that safer and dramatically more effective therapies are within reach, if not imminent.
While some interesting and encouraging advances were unveiled at this past year's Scientific Sessions in Los Angeles, the fact is that the triptans represent the only specific class of medication designed and approved for migraine in the last half-century. We appear to be, at best, several years away from having newer treatments. It is well known that federal funding for migraine research has been woefully inadequate, and industry cannot make up the slack.
We can do better . . . we must do better. We have the brain trust to move this field forward - what we lack is the funding to do so. So it falls to us in the voluntary health sector to make the right amount of noise in the right way to raise the national funding priority for migraine.
2013 promises to be an exciting year for AMF. We will launch a nationwide campaign to raise awareness and funding support for research. This campaign promises to mobilize the migraine community, public policymakers, well-known public figures, and American business to help us realize our goals. You will hear and see much more about this in the coming year and we hope you will be an active part of this unprecedented campaign. Our goals are to generate the highest possible national visibility for migraine and the need for more research funding -- and to inspire those who make funding decisions to give this disease the attention it deserves. If successful, we also hope to support the development of a national multicenter clinical registry and tissue bio-repository which has the promise of rapidly advance scientific and translational research. In addition, we will continue our quest to facilitate the development and success of academic headache centers around the United States. This will improve patient access to specialty care, facilitate the training of undergraduate and postgraduate medical trainees in the care of patients with disabling headache, and foster collaborative research efforts.
Because you are so integral to our success, we are asking for a donation to AMF. As we near the end of the year, your support can make the critical difference. You can do it by visiting our website at www.americanmigrainefoundation.org/Donation/default.aspx or by mailing us a check at the address below.
We thank you for your commitment to the field, our society, the foundation, and most importantly, your patients.
We wish you the very best throughout this holiday season and a healthy and prosperous 2013.
David W. Dodick, MD, FAHS
Chair, American Migraine Foundation
Elizabeth Loder, MD, MPH, FAHS
President, American Headache Society
PS -- Did you know you can redeem your American Express Membership Rewards points for a donation? For every 1,000 points you redeem, we will receive $10.00. Select the Members Give banner at the link above.
Whatever holidays you may be observing, I hope they're joyful and that you have some pain-free time to enjoy them.
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© Teri Robert, 2012
Last updated December 20, 2012.