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Mental pain has been proposed as a global person-centered outcome measure. The aim of this cross-sectional study was to test an essential requisite of such a measure, namely that mental pain incorporates independent contributions from a range of discrete but disparate outcome measures.
Two hundred migraine patients were assessed concerning migraine disability, psychosomatic syndromes, mental pain, depression, anxiety, and psychosocial dimensions. General linear models were tested to verify which measures would individually make unique contributions to overall mental pain.
The final model, accounting for 44% of variance, identified that higher mental pain was associated with more severe depressive symptoms, higher migraine disability, lower well-being, and poorer quality of life.
In this sample, mental pain was shown to behave as expected of a global outcome measure, since multiple measures of symptomatology and quality of life showed modest but significant bivariate correlations with mental pain and some of these measures individually made unique contributions to overall mental pain.
Pain has been qualified under four categories: nociception, perception of pain, suffering, and pain behaviors. Most of the literature on migraine has devoted attention to the first two. The aim of the present cohort study was to investigate patients with migraine enrolled at a tertiary care unit to study suffering and mental pain and identify potential risk factors for migraine.
An observational cross-sectional study was carried out on patients with chronic migraine (CM) and episodic migraine (EM), and healthy subjects (HS). The three groups were matched for age and sex. A comprehensive assessment of migraine disability, pain, psychiatric disorders, psychosomatic syndromes, depressive and anxious symptoms, euthymia, psychosocial variables, mental pain, and pain-proneness (PP) was performed.
Three hundred subjects were enrolled (100 CM, 100 EM, and 100 HS). Based on the multiple regression analyses, those presenting PP (social impairment: odds ratio [OR] = 3.59, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.14-11.29; depressive symptoms: OR = 3.82, 95% CI = 1.74-8.41) were more likely to be CM than HS. Those with higher levels of PP (social impairment: OR = 4.04, 95% CI = 1.60-10.22; depressive symptoms: OR = 2.02, 95% CI = 1.26-3.24) were more likely to be EM than HS. Those presenting higher levels of mental pain were more likely to be CM than EM (OR = 1.45, 95% CI = 1.02-2.07).
Migraine is an unpleasant sensory and emotional experience associated with psychosocial manifestations that might contribute to the level of suffering of the individuals. Mental pain resulted to be the variable that most differentiated patients with CM from EM.
The Diagnostic Criteria for Psychosomatic Research (DCPR) are those of psychosomatic syndromes that did not find room in the classical taxonomy. More recently, the DCPR were updated, called DCPR-revised (DCPR-R). The present study was conducted to test the criterion-related validity of the DCPR-R.
Two hundred consecutive subjects were enrolled at the Headache Center of Careggi University Hospital (Italy): 100 subjects had a diagnosis of chronic migraine (CM) and 100 had a diagnosis of episodic migraine (EM). Participants received a clinical assessment, which included the DCPR-revised Semi-Structured Interview (DCPR-R SSI), the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-5 (SCID-5), and the psychosocial index (PSI).
Forty-seven subjects (23.5%) had at least one DSM-5 diagnosis: major depressive disorder (8.5%; n = 17) and agoraphobia (7.5%; n = 15) were the most frequent. One hundred and ten subjects (55%) reported a DCPR-R diagnosis: allostatic overload (29%; n = 58) and type A behavior (10.5%; n = 21) were the most frequent. When the incremental validity of the DCPR system over the DSM system was tested using PSI subscales as the criterion variable, the DCPR-R increased up to 0.11–0.24 the amount of explained variance. Subjects with at least one DCPR-R diagnosis showed lower PSI well-being scores (p = .001), higher PSI stress scores (p
< .001), and higher PSI psychological distress scores (p = .008) than subjects without a DCPR-R diagnosis.
The DCPR-R showed a good criterion-related validity in migraine outpatients. Thus, they might be implemented, together with the DSM-5, in the assessment of migraine subjects.
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