RAK Hospital
Dr. Raza Siddiqui, Executive Director, RAK Hospital Image Credit: Supplied

With over 1.8 billion migraine sufferers worldwide and one in four people in UAE battling the disease, RAK Hospital through its new initiative launches the country’s first ‘Migraine Patient Panel’. Since only 40% of people get the correct diagnosis and in many cases, it may take up to 5 years from the first clinical manifestations, the core idea behind this panel is to create mass awareness about the disease, its identification, diagnosis and effective management strategies.

The first session will be held on Thursday, 22nd September at RAK Hospital premises in Ras Al Khaimah from 4 – 6 pm. However, since it’s a hybrid event, attendees also have the flexibility of joining it online. At the event, patients will share their experiences, and connect with their peers while the medical experts will guide them on the new therapies and solutions depending on their individual situations. Additionally, the experts will also address patient queries and the participants will receive free consultation vouchers from the hospital.

Talking about the idea, Dr. Raza Siddiqui, Executive Director, RAK Hospital, says, “We take our community’s health very seriously and have always believed in creating the culture of wellness. With this initiative, which is based on the 3As – Awareness, Approach and Access, we are determined to generate considerable awareness amongst the population. As such understanding the disease is crucial for early intervention and would help people recognize the condition better; identification and correct diagnosis will determine the exact treatment approach and access to the right care will be provided by making the right kind of medicines available to the patients.

Our institution has been at the forefront of introducing the latest and most advanced treatments in all areas of care including migraine. With this move too, our focus is to equip the public with the right knowledge and provide access to new therapy options alongside offering peer interaction. The hybrid event model is adopted so that the maximum number of lives can be touched.”

Talking about the disease, Dr Sweta Adatia, Medical Director and Head of Neurology at RAK Hospital said, “Migraine is identified as the second most disabling condition globally and in UAE too leading to absenteeism from work and loss of quality of life, the first being backache. We want to make a difference in the lives of these people by providing them with the right intervention at the right time so that the number of headache days are reduced significantly.

Providing a platform to people wherein they can share their experiences and find support and help from their peers as well as medical experts can go a long way in the successful management of the condition and the stigma attached to it.”

RAK Hospital
Dr Sweta Adatia, Medical Director and Head of Neurology at RAK Hospital Image Credit: Supplied

“Migraine is a complex disease which needs to be well understood. Many times because of the associated problems such as anxiety, depression, and thyroid issues amongst others we may need to involve internal medicine, a psychologist or even a physiotherapist in the whole care process, therefore a multi-disciplinary approach will be the protocol in numerous cases”, Adatia commented.

Adding further, Adatia states, “Thus far we have treated over 5,000 migraine patients at the hospital. On average 30-40% of patients at our Neurology clinic come seeking headache treatment though not all are migraine patients but a significant majority are. However, all need different treatment protocols depending on the severity of the diseases and associated issues.

Until now, in the absence of a specific preventive medication for migraine, doctors have been treating and managing the condition with the use of regular painkillers, triptans, other antidepressants, anti-epilepsy and anti-blood pressure drugs. However, in the last few years, the designer molecule Anti-CGRP treatments have come to the fore and become extremely effective in treating migraine patients.

Anti-CGRP therapy targets CGRP – the protein known for causing migraine, reducing the frequency, severity, and duration of headache episodes effectively. The treatment has already proved to be a huge success at RAK Hospital, showing a significant drop in migraine episodes by 50% to 60% every month. These are available in the form of injectable as well as tablet and are the best in-line care for migraine which was not present earlier.

Migraine is a distinct neurological disease that is typically characterized by recurrent unilateral headaches of moderate to severe pain intensity that can be described as throbbing in quality. It's often accompanied by nausea, vomiting, and extreme sensitivity to light and sound. Migraine attacks can last for hours to days, and the pain can be so severe that it interferes with your daily activities.

For more information on the panel and to participate, please visit https://rakhospital.com/migraine-treatment-patient-panel/ or call +971 7 2074444.