Clinical Neuroscience

The effect of psychiatric comorbidities and stress-coping strategies on perceived quality of life in migraine

PETROVICS-BALOG Anna1, MAJLÁTH Zsófia1, LUKÁCS Melinda1, HOLCZER Adrienn1, MUST Anita1,2, TAJTI János1, VÉCSEI László1,3

NOVEMBER 30, 2019

Clinical Neuroscience - 2019;72(11-12)


Purpose – Migraine is one of the most disabling primary headache conditions. We aimed to detect hidden symptoms of anxiety and depression and to survey stress-coping mechanisms and related quality of life in a large migraine population without any known psychiatric comorbidity. Method – 123 migraine patients (MG) and 66 healthy subjects (HC) completed the Beck Depression Inventory-II (BDI-II), the State and Trait Anxiety Inventory (S-STAI and T-STAI), the Stress and Coping Inventory (SCI) and the 36-Item Short Form Health Survey (SF-36). Results – MG patients reached significantly higher scores on the BDI-II and the T-STAI yielding previously undetected anxiety and depression symptoms. Significant differences were present on the SCI: higher stress scores and lower coping levels suggested impaired stress-coping strategies in migraine. MG patients achieved significantly lower scores on most of SF-36 subscales indicating lower perceived quality of life. Significant correlations were found between BDI-II, T-STAI, SCI scores and subscales of the SF-36. Conclusion – Unrecognized symptoms of anxiety and depression, as well as less effective stress-coping strategies might be related to the lower perceived quality of life in migraine. The screening of these symptoms might lead to more focused and efficient therapeutic strategies. Addressing stress management techniques could improve quality of life on the long-term.


  1. Department of Neurology, Albert Szent-Györgyi Clinical Centre, University of Szeged, Szeged
  2. Department of Cognitive and Neuropsychology, Institute of Psychology, Faculty of Arts, University of Szeged, Szeged
  3. MTA-SZTE Neuroscience Research Group, Szeged



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Risk factors for ischemic stroke and stroke subtypes in patients with chronic kidney disease

GÜLER Siber, NAKUS Engin, UTKU Ufuk

Background - The aim of this study was to compare ischemic stroke subtypes with the effects of risk factors, the relationship between grades of kidney disease and the severity of stroke subtypes. Methods - The current study was designed retrospectively and performed with data of patients who were hospitalised due to ischemic stroke. We included 198 subjects who were diagnosed with ischemic stroke of Grade 3 and above with chronic kidney disease. Results - In our study were reported advanced age, coronary artery disease, moderate kidney disease as the most frequent risk factors for cardioembolic etiology. Hypertension, hyperlipidemia, smoking and alcohol consumption were the most frequent risk factors for large-artery disease. Female sex and anaemia were the most frequent risk factors for small-vessel disease. Dialysis and severe kidney disease were the most frequent risk factors in unknown etiologies, while male sex, diabetes mellitus, prior stroke and mild kidney disease were the most frequent risk factors for other etiologies. National Institute of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS) scores were lower for small-vessel disease compared with other etiologies. This relation was statistically significant (p=0.002). Conclusion - In order to improve the prognosis in ischemic stroke with chronic kidney disease, the risk factors have to be recognised and the treatment options must be modified according to those risk factors.

Clinical Neuroscience

Vestibular evoked myogenic potential responses in Parkinson’s disease


Background - Our objectives were to determine the differences in the vestibular evoked myogenic potential (VEMP) responses in patients diagnosed with early staged idiopathic Parkinson’s disease (PD) compared to the normal population and evaluate the vestibular system disorder causing balance-posture disorders. Second aim of this study was to investigate caloric test responses particularly in early staged PD compared to normal popu­lation. Material and methods - Thirty patients (14 females and 16 males; mean age, 60.6 ± 13.1 years) diagnosed with idiopathic PD and 28 healthy subjects (20 males and 8 females; mean age, 59.1 ± 6.4 years) were included. The patient and control groups were subdivided according to their age, gender and the patient group was subdivided according to onset time of the Parkinson symptoms, Hoehn-Yahr staging. The subgroups were compared for VEMP and caloric test responses. Results - There were no significant differences between the study and control groups for right and left VEMP measurements. Patients over 60 years and under 60 years did not show significant differences in terms of right and left mean VEMP measurements. However, P1 amplitude was significantly lower in patients over 60 years old (P = .004). Gender, disease duration, BERG balance scale and Hoehn-Yahr stage had no effect on the VEMP amplitudes. There was no significant correlation with the side of Parkinsonian symptoms to the side of canal paresis (P = .566) and the side on which no VEMP response was obtained in caloric test. Conclusion - VEMP responses were not different between PD and healthy subjects. VEMP P1 amplitude was decreased with age in PD group. Canal paresis and symptoms side were not statistically correlated in caloric test.

Clinical Neuroscience

[Tracing trace elements in mental functions]

JANKA Zoltán

[Trace elements are found in the living organism in small (trace) amounts and are mainly essential for living functions. Essential trace elements are in humans the chromium (Cr), cobalt (Co), copper (Cu), fluorine (F), iodine (I), iron (Fe), manganese (Mn), molybdenum (Mo), selenium (Se), zinc (Zn), and questionably the boron (B) and vanadium (V). According to the biopsychosocial concept, mental functions have biological underpinnings, therefore the impairment of certain neurochemical processes due to shortage of trace elements may have mental consequences. Scientific investigations indicate the putative role of trace element deficiency in psychiatric disorders such in depression (Zn, Cr, Se, Fe, Co, I), premenstrual dysphoria (Cr), schizophrenia (Zn, Se), cognitive deterioration/de­mentia (B, Zn, Fe, Mn, Co, V), mental retardation (I, Mo, Cu), binge-eating (Cr), autism (Zn, Mn, Cu, Co) and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (Fe). At the same time, the excess quantity (chronic exposure, genetic error) of certain trace elements (Cu, Mn, Co, Cr, Fe, V) can also lead to mental disturbances (depression, anxiety, psychosis, cognitive dysfunction, insomnia). Lithium (Li), being efficacious in the treatment of bipolar mood disorder, is not declared officially as a trace element. Due to nutrition (drinking water, food) the serum Li level is about a thousand times less than that used in therapy. However, Li level in the red cells is lower as the membrane sodium-Li countertransport results in a Li efflux. Nevertheless, the possibility that Li is a trace element has emerged as studies indicate its potential efficacy in such a low concentration, since certain geographic regions show an inverse correlation between the Li level of drinking water and the suicide rate in that area. ]

Clinical Neuroscience

A clinical study of an online educational programme for chronic pain patients

GALAMBOS Wellingerné Krisztina, SZOK Délia, CSABAI Márta

Background - The research of alexithymia - the inability to express or understand emotions - has recently become of great importance in clinical practice, mainly in the field of doctor-patient and psychologist patient communication. Many studies have proven the correlation between alexithymia and the development of functional somatic symptoms, i.e. somatization. Purpose - The aim of this clinical study was to examine the emotion-recognition and emotion communication patterns of patients suffering from chronic pain (e.g., headache, low back pain, arthralgia, neuropathy). Moreover, the participants received access to the Hungarian adaptation of a new international online educational site ( dealing with pain management. Methods - Data were collected from the Headache and Chronic Pain Outpatient Clinic, Department of Neurology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Szeged, Hungary (tertiary care - Group 1) and from a general practice in district 2, Budapest, Hungary (primary care - Group 2) from March, 2017 to April, 2018. Patients received a test package containing a pain-specific questionnaire, then the Difficulties in Emotion Regulation Scale (DERS), the Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20), and the shortened Hungarian version of the WHO-Well-being (WBI-5) had to be completed. After filling out the questionnaires, all patients got access to the Hungarian adaptation of the website. Results - Altogether 92 patients participated in the study (Group 1 n=50; Group 2 n=42). Based on the TAS-20 re­sults, 35 patients reached a pathological score (≥60 points), which indicates the diagnosis of alexithymia. The mean TAS-score was lower in Group 2 (primary care) than in Group 1 (tertiary care) (p=0.003). The DERS disclosed pathological results in 19 cases (p=0.009). As regards the chapters, we received feedback only from 25 out of 92 patients (27%) (Group 1 n=20; Group 2 n=5). Conclusions - Although the examined patients have been suffering from different chronic pain syndromes for years and 50% of them confirmed that symptoms placed at least moderate or heavy burden on their everyday life, the available educational programme was studied only by a smaller proportion of patients than expected. Additionally, those who surveyed the Hungarian adaptation of the website were mainly patients from primary care (Group 2), in spite of the fact that patients from specialized medical care (Group 1) had worse subjective conditions. Our future objective is to extend our database with follow-up results and to improve patients’ response willingness.

Clinical Neuroscience

[Early experience with CyberKnife treatment in case of intra-, suprasellar hypernephroma metastasis]


[Among tumours found in the suprasellar region metastases are very rare and the most frequent primary tumours are lung and breast cancer. Data of a patient with clear cell renal carcinoma with intra-suprasellar metastasis will be discussed. As in most of the tumours in the sellar region, the first symptom was visual deterioration with visual field defect. A transsphenoidal debulking of the tumour was performed and the residual tumor was treated by CyberKnife hypofractionated stereotactic radiotherapy. Both our patient’s visual acuity and visual field impairment improved after the surgery and CyberKnife treatment. At 6-month after irradiation, MR of the sella showed a complete remission of the tumour. This was the first treatment with CyberKnife in our country in case of a tumour close to the optic chiasm. According to our best knowledge, there are 21 cases in the literature with renal cell carcinoma metastasis in the suprasellar region.]

All articles in the issue

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Clinical Neuroscience

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The syndrome of headache with neurologic deficits and cerebrospinal fluid lymphocytosis (HaNDL) is a rare entity. This disease has been related to migrainous headaches. It is a benign, self-limited disorder, which is characterized by fluctuating neurological symptoms and cerebrospinal fluid lymphocytosis. We describe a case of a 47 years old man with acute onset of headache and aphasia. Cerebrospinal fluid analysis revealed a lymphocytic pleocytosis (25 cells/μl, 100% lymphocytes). Electroencephalogram showed moderate slow rhythm in the left hemisphere, with temporoparietal predominance, and without epileptiform activity. His blood tests as well as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) results were normal. With the diagnosis of HaNDL syndrome the patient was accepted in the Department of Neurology and discharged with full recovery.

Clinical Neuroscience

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Aim - The aim of this study was to evaluate the frequency and characteristics of attacks in patients with migraine, to determine the effects of anxiety or depressive symptoms, and to evaluate the marital relationships of patients with migraine. Method - Thirty patients who were admitted to the neurology outpatient clinic of our hospital between July 2018 and October 2018 and were diagnosed with migraine according to the 2013 International Headache Society (IHS) diagnostic criteria were included in this cross-sectional study. Age, sex, headache frequency and severity, depressive traits, marital satisfaction and anxiety status were examined. We used the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI), Maudsley Marital Questionnaire (MMQ) and Visual Analogue Scale (VAS) for measuring relevant parameters. Results - The mean severity of migraine pain according to VAS scale was 6.93 ± 1.41 and the mean number of migraine attacks was 4.50 ± 4.24. The mean BDI score of the patients was 12.66 ± 8.98, the mean MMQ-M score was 19.80 ± 12.52, the mean MMQ-S score was 13.20 ± 9.53, the mean STAI-state score was 39.93 ± 10.87 and the mean STAI-trait score was 45.73 ± 8.96. No significant correlation was found between age, number of migraine attacks, migraine duration, migraine headache intensity, and BDI, STAI and MMQ scores (p>0.05). But there was a positive correlation between MMQ-S and scores obtained from the BDI and STAI-state scales (p<0.05). Conclusion - In this study more than half of the migraine patients had mild, moderate or severe depression. A positive correlation was found between sexual dissatisfaction and scale scores of depression and anxiety.

Clinical Neuroscience

Hyperhomocysteinemia in female migraineurs of childbearing ages


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Clinical Neuroscience

[Earlier and more efficiently: the role of deep brain stimulation for parkinson’s disease preserving the working capabilities]

DELI Gabriella, BALÁS István, KOMOLY Sámuel, DÓCZI Tamás, JANSZKY József, ASCHERMANN Zsuzsanna, NAGY Ferenc, BOSNYÁK Edit, KOVÁCS Norbert

[Background – The recently published “EarlyStim” study demonstrated that deep brain stimulation (DBS) for the treatment of Parkinson’s disease (PD) with early fluctuations is superior to the optimal pharmacological treatment in improving the quality of life and motor symptoms, and preserving sociocultural position. Our retrospective investigation aimed to evaluate if DBS therapy was able to preserve the working capabilities of our patients. Methods – We reviewed the data of 39 young (<60 years-old) PD patients who underwent subthalamic DBS implantation at University of Pécs and had at least two years follow-up. Patients were categorized into two groups based on their working capabilities: Patients with active job (“Job+” group, n=15) and retired patients (without active job, “Job-” group, n=24). Severity of motor symptoms (UPDRS part 3), quality of life (EQ-5D) and presence of active job were evaluated one and two years after the operation. Results – As far as the severity of motor symptoms were concerned, similar (approximately 50%) improvement was achieved in both groups. However, the postoperative quality of life was significantly better in the Job+ group. Majority (12/15, 80%) of Job+ group members were able to preserve their job two years after the operation. However, only a minimal portion (1/24, 4.2%) of the Job- group members was able to return to the world of active employees (p<0.01, McNemar test). Conclusion – Although our retrospective study has several limitations, our results fit well with the conclusions of “EarlyStim” study. Both of them suggest that with optimal timing of DBS implantation we may preserve the working capabilities of our patients.]

Lege Artis Medicinae

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