While diagnosing migraines is generally straightforward for doctors or other health care providers, treating migraine pain can be much more challenging. While there are many different treatments for migraines, people may have to try different approaches to find what works for them.
In late 2019, MyMigraineTeam conducted a survey with 158 members diagnosed with migraines. MyMigraineTeam asked about the health care providers who treat members’ migraines and their experiences with these doctors.
MyMigraineTeam shares research results with members so the MyMigraineTeam community can learn from each other's experiences.
In the MyMigraineTeam survey, respondents reported seeing many different types of doctors to treat their migraines and the associated symptoms. On average, members reported having seen four doctors with different specialties, with 87 percent going for appointments with neurologists and 84 percent with primary care providers. In fact, our members average visiting four different types of doctors to diagnose or treat their migraines or symptoms.
Many respondents indicate that their migraines are not managed well, with over six in 10 having gone to the emergency room (ER) for their migraines or related symptoms. According to the Migraine Research Foundation, every 10 seconds, someone in the United States goes to the emergency room because of head pain, and roughly 1.2 million ER visits every year are for acute migraine attacks.
There are several different types of migraines. When someone has migraines 15 or more days a month (or 15 “monthly migraine days”), they are considered to have chronic migraines.
Those with chronic migraines usually go to a neurologist (60 percent), followed by a primary care or internal medicine provider (26 percent).
When someone has migraines 14 or fewer days a month, these are known as episodic migraines. Members who have episodic migraines were split between seeing a neurologist (47 percent) or a primary care or internal medicine provider (43 percent) for their care.
Read more about results from the MyMigraineTeam survey: