Abdominal migraine

Most often seen in children, a syndrome that may be associated with migraine

Abdominal migraine is an episodic syndrome that may be associated with migraine.  Most cases are reported in young children, though it can occur in patients of all ages.

As children with abdominal migraine grow older, about half of them “grow out” of abdominal migraine by the age of 14-16 years. Typical attacks of migraine headache are reported by two-thirds of children with abdominal migraine either concurrently with abdominal migraine or in the place of abdominal migraine during late adolescence and early adult life.

Physicians, treating adult patients, have recognized many patients with symptoms typical of abdominal migraine and they make the diagnosis after extensive investigations to exclude other possible causes. Many adult patients who were labelled, in the past, as suffering from non-specific dyspepsia, irritable bowel syndrome and functional abdominal pain are now thought to have had abdominal migraine. Many research articles have been published in the gastroenterology literature describing abdominal migraine in the adult population with clinical features and treatment options similar to those in childhood.

Our thanks to Dr Ishaq Abu-Arafeh, Consultant Paediatrician for assisting with this information