The Migraine World Summit
Learn How To Win The Battle

Written by Holly Hazen


Are you losing your battle with migraines?

I spent 14 years losing mine! And then another 5 or 6 getting my timing right. So, I can't tell you how important I think this summit is.

Don't suffer in silence...

You can get access to world class migraine doctors at the Migraine World Summit.

This year the summit was on from March 20th to the 28th, 2019. But don't worry, if you missed it live you can still purchase a copy. The encore talk from Dr. Andrew Charles alone is worth the price - here's a bit more on his talk. I LOVED it.

This is an incredible opportunity to hear from dozens of leading experts that treat chronic migraine sufferers every day.

Migraine is one of the world’s most common ailments yet it still remains today under diagnosed and under treated. Migraine is the 2nd highest cause of disability worldwide when measured in years of life lost to disability. The statistics now show that over a billion people on the planet are living with migraine.

The way I see it, this could change the way you manage your attacks... forever! 

This summit is your chance to improve your understanding of migraine headaches and get some answers you've been waiting for. I always say that education and knowledge equals options and choices. Let this add to your education. 


Full disclosure - I stand to earn a commission from the links on this page if you make a purchase. There is no extra cost to you. Click here for more details.

The World Migraine Summit streams FREE for everyone once a year - but you do need to register for the free tickets. 

The full schedule information is here (just click "schedule" at the top of the page). If you've missed it, you can still purchase the whole program which could change your life... so register now and have a look around.

What The Migraine World Summit Does For Me

The Migraine World Summit gives me more confidence to know that I am doing all the right things.

In fact, I watched the first year to see if I needed to change any information here on my website. I was very happy to see that my research was correct and nothing needed to be changed. So it instilled in me a wonderful sense of confidence

Each year, I plan the whole week off to watch it start to finish for free and if I just can't manage that, I buy the package to watch at my leisure. There is always more to learn.

I watch the summit to:

  • Increase my own confidence and knowledge around the latest effective migraine treatments.
  • Keep up to date with what's in the pipeline for future treatments.
  • Get the scientific evidence based data on what alternative therapies work, and which ones just do not.
  • Support migraine research. Investing in the Migraine World Summit supports the Migraine Research Foundation and other organizations dedicated to fighting migraine.
  • Save time and money moving forward.

A huge bonus for me is that there are no perfumes, no bright lights, and no migraine triggers.

I can watch the Migraine World Summit in complete comfort at home.

I sure wish I had this information twenty years ago, I would have saved hundreds of thousands of dollars! Yup... probably more. :-(



You can click here for my review of a few of the Migraine World Summit speakers:

Invaluable Summit Highlights - 2019 | 2018 | 2017 |



MUST WATCH 2019 Migraine World Summit Encore

Dr. Andrew Charles, MD – The New Era of Migraine: Hope and Help

Dr. Andrew Charles' opening night talk, which the summit streamed for us in the encore, shocked and amazed me. Here's what shocked me:

  • The hypotheses of migraine being a vascular disease... is wrong. The blood vessels do not dilate during an attack causing the pain.

This is a MUST WATCH talk... this single opening day encore, is worth the cost of admission!

In 15 minutes, you will understand SO much more about what a migraine is, what it does, and what you can do about it. Here's what amazed me:

THE GOOD NEWS is even if nothing is working for you right now… science has led us to a chemical cause of migraine, this shows we can develop migraine specific treatments, it raises the possibility of more targeted medicine to abort attacks based on an individual’s chemistry.

He leaves us with that message of optimism and hope. "This is a great time for migraine patients."

He covers so much more and all I can say is… watch it!


2019 Speakers and Topics I'm Excited About

Here's a list of the 2019 talks I've enjoyed. I'm always amazed at what I learn each year. Be sure to check out the event website for the full schedule:

  • Sleep, Insomnia and Energy - Christine Lay, MD, FAHS
  • Treating Each Phase of a Migraine Attack - Antoinette Maassen van den Brink, PhD
  • Clinical Errors that Undermine Migraine Care - Zaza Katsarava, MD, PhD
  • Alternative Treatments for Cluster Headache - Brian E. McGeeney, MD, MPH, MBA
  • Understanding Balance, Vertigo and Dizziness - Michael T. Teixido, MD
  • Drug Interactions with Common Migraine Meds - Shivang Joshi, M.D., MPH, RPh
  • Neck Pain and Migraine: Trigger or Symptom? - Andrew Charles, MD
  • Medication for Prevention: Know Your Options - Anna Andreou, PhD

And that's just the first 4 days! You can see the full schedule after you register here...


2019 Migraine World Summit Highlights

David Dodick, MD - Controlling Unresponsive Chronic Migraine

This is one of my absolute favorite talks from the Migraine World Summit (Day 7). Here's just a couple of key points he made...

First of all, I felt like crying about 3 times watching the talk with Dr. David Dodick.

I wanted to say "no headache centers here, no integrated clinics, no pain rehab program, just 25+ years of suffering with poorly prepared doctors guessing at drugs. And no internet" when I first got diagnosed. Back to the talk...

"What slips us into chronic migraine?"

So many migraine sufferers start out with episodic migraine and then they progress to chronic attacks. These are some risk factors:

  • Frequency of headache and using acute medications - you should be reassessed if you suffer from 1 attack a week.
  • Snoring – obstructive sleep apnea - or another sleep disorder.
  • Obesity increases the risk by 5 fold. These patients get prescribed diet and exercise – low carb diet and exercise have good results. Exercise has found to be as effect as some of the prophylactic medication.
  • Anxiety and depression increase the risk of it moving towards chronic by 3 times.
  • Allodynia. Having Allodynia also increases your risk to become chronic. This means that central sensitization has increased and is on its way to becoming chronic. So you must initiate proper treatment as soon as possible.
  • Other chronic pain syndromes.
  • Genetics and the risk factors above.
  • Other comorbid diseases.

Sub-optimal treatment of episodic attacks can increase the risk of migraines becoming chronic.


**Are your triggers actually triggers... or are they symptoms?**

Keep it simple in your diary:

  • whether you had attack that day;
  • if it was mild, moderate or severe;
  • how long it lasted and
  • what you took.

That's all the information he needs that informs his decision making on how he’s going to treat you. As far as triggers go... a trigger needs to be consistent - 75% of the time it must trigger an attack. You can chase your tail with triggers. His job is to raise our threshold so we can live a little more fully and not be afraid to go outside in the glaring sunlight or have a glass of red wine with dinner (so we’re not chasing imaginary triggers).

Proper migraine management will raise your threshold and not trigger you into attacks so often. 

And then there’s that conversation around what is a trigger? Some triggers are actually the attack already starting in the brain and leading to symptoms within the attack process. Mood swings and food cravings (chocolate) can be part of the process, these frequent symptoms are not triggering. Make the triggers irrelevant just by raising your threshold.

There have been so many great talks on the Migraine World Summit, here's one more I wanted to share highlights on: Angel Moreno, Nurse Practitioner - Can A Keto Diet Help With Migraines?

You can still get access to the Migraine World Summit here:


2018 Migraine World Summit Highlights

Peter Goadsby, MD - The Keys to Finding New Treatments 

For disability look at what the migraine takes away from you in detail.

I found this one really hard to summarize... I found it one of the best of the Migraine World Summit. So settle in, this is a long highlight!

Dr. Goadsby covered how patients can work more effectively with their doctor to communicate their experiences.

Your diary should represent what you are trying to say. It’s proof that you’ve got a lot of headache days. Make it summarized and be precise about what you need to say! Don’t bombard your doctor with a huge amount of information – but break it into small chunks.

Work out your message and work out how to support your message.

Your doctor needs and should take a good history to get the diagnosis right.

It’s not just about how bad the pain is, if you can communicate the disability it is causing you... a diary and a MIDAS form filled out… would be a good place to start.

Set realistic expectations.

There's NO CURE BUT your doctor will aim to reduce the attacks by 50% and resolve it in 2 hours. AND it doesn’t come back.

Commonly overlooked or under rated treatments:

  • Dose for body weight
  • Timing - TREAT WHEN MILD
  • Time of exposure - you must give it time to work

Dosing by body weight for acute treatments example:

900 mgs of aspirin – under dosing for say a 70 kg person;

600-800 mgs of ibuprofen would be a more appropriate dose for ibuprofen and migraine; 

Naproxen – 500-1000 mgs for a 70 kg adult would be a reasonable dose.

This bumps up against medication overdose.

It's important to use the medication when the pain is not yet full force – take when still mild.

The two most exciting things in the migraine world according to Dr. Goadsby at the Migraine World Summit this year are neuro-modulation and the CGRP drugs.

Now we have CGRP and monoclonal antibodies that block the CGRP pathway that is activated in migraine. 

Specifically designed to stop migraines.

CGRP itself is a peptide - 37 amino acids - and it circulates in the blood, it’s in the brain, involved in migraine process. It’s elevated in migraine. 

If you infuse it in, will trigger migraine, if you block it, it will stop an attack. This means acute treatment.

Ability to either mop up GCRP or block the receptor.

On a preventive side, the CGRP acts at a receptor, a place that turns things on, so these antibodies are being designed to either block that receptor so that CGRP can’t get on there OR mop up the CGRP’s so they have no effect. 

Monoclonal antibodies come from a single source. They have the immune path, the immune end, mutated away, so they don’t do anything immune. They don’t change the immune system itself.

And in doing that they reduce frequency and severity of migraine.

4 of them are in development – 3 currently filed in the US already. We can expect to hear more about that soon.

He talked about tolerability earlier, usually his slides on side effects are embarrassing – not in this case.

The current studies are proving very optimist with around 10,000 people testing this CGRP monoclonal antibodies treatment.

If you’ve failed with numerous medications, or have lost years… have hope because in the very near future you have a very good chance that this will help.

Have Hope! CGRP Antibodies Showing Promising Results.

Serene Branson - How To Thrive In Your Career Despite Migraine

Transient aphasia can look like a stroke.

I wrote about her episode back in 2011, here’s the link - Reporter Serene Branson: Not A Stroke Just A  Migraine

This was a rare case example of Transient Aphasia that can look like a stroke that unfolded on live TV.

She never knew that her speech was so impaired until she watched it later. And after she got off the air, then she felt the numbness in her tongue and cheek and the arm – then she got scared.

It took her a year of researching and finding the right treatment and she now has it all under control. She’s currently a migraine advocate and journalist on CBS-2/KCAL-9 and a proud mom of 2.

This transient aphasia can occur in the aura phase or as part of a hemiplegic attack.

Teri Robert - They Don’t Get It: Educating Family & Friends On Migraine

Migraine is a life sentence but it’s not a death sentence.

"Knowledge is the best prescription." ~ Former Surgeon General C. Everett Koop 

Education will empower you. Education is as important as our treatments. 

We will be better equipped to deal with doctors. Research shows that when we are part of the decision-making process we have better outcomes. 

Education makes us less frightened, and less anxious. If you get a new symptom – i.e. hemiplegic – that paralyzes one side of body – it can be terrifying.

Migraine disease steals a great many things from us if we let it.

When you’re panicking – ask yourself these questions:

  • Ok – stop – is this the worse migraine you’ve ever had?
  • Are you having symptoms you’ve never had before?
  • Do you really need to go to the ER or is your migraine making you panic?

Banish the migraine guilt... this disease is not your fault!

2017 Migraine World Summit Highlights

Golden Rule of Regularity

AND

Chocolate is NOT a trigger!

Dr. Goadsby – Top 10 Migraine Myths to Bust

The Myth Around Food Triggers

The hypothalamus drives you to eat. 6 - 8 hours is the premonitory phase... it’s biology.

Eat what you like and you’ll still get an attack. Symptoms are part of the biology of an attack. Chocolate is NOT a trigger!

He also said migraineurs will benefit from using the Golden Rule of Regularity with sleep, meals and exertion. Migraine biology wants us to be creatures of habit.

Diagnosis is straightforward. Management is tricky.

Dr. Andrew Charles – Recognizing and Treating 4 Phases of Migraine

Treat your prodrome with caffeine to help with fatigue, mood changes and brain fog!

The 4 phases of migraineYou need to know this to get your timing right. Soooo important. 

If you get moody and irritable – your partner will notice. Use that as an early warning signal.

Neck pain is common in the premonitory phase of the attack, food cravings, light sensitivity, yawning, excessive urinating. For some fatigue is far worse than the pain. The phases merge and overlap and multiple brain regions are being affected. 

He said to treat your prodrome with caffeine to help with fatigue, mood changes and brain fog!

In my personal experience, that only works effectively if you don't drink it every day. So - experiment.

Dawn Buse, PhD - Is Migraine Affecting Your Personal Life?

It's important to have a backup plan, AND plan ahead. 

Children are resilient - talk with them and tell them what's going on.

Keep living your life!

Talk with those around you in advance. Have a backup plan, and plan ahead.

If you feel left out or isolated, as this condition can, get pictures and a video from a friend. Some participation is better than none for some of us.

Children are resilient – parents can talk it out with them; give them ways to help out – cold wash cloth, bring water, let them come and help.

Dr. Lawrence Newman - Best Acute Treatments You May Not Have Tried

It’s always a migraine! Take your abortive!

Only 5% of people are getting the right treatment!

Why triptans don’t work:

1. Doctor prescribes the wrong dose - there is a minimum and maximum dose. He suggests starting with the highest dose and watch for side effects and then reduce dose the next time. 

2. Wrong formulation. You must also treat the nausea in most cases. 

3. You wait too long. If you wait 40 minutes other pathways come into play and make the triptans less effective. Timing is everything.

Wrong dose and dosage causes us to take more pills.

You will need to have coping strategies and a plan for pain management setup to survive chronic migraines... until we find a cure!

Click Here For The Migraine World Summit


Connect With Others In The Private Facebook Group

The impacts of migraines cannot be overstated.

It can affect you in all aspects of life: physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. As well as socially, financially and cognitively. It can be very isolating.

But you already know that, because you are here reading this.

The Migraine World Summits private Facebook group will help you connect with others that completely understand what you are going through.

I hope you're as excited as I am to have access to this information!

If you miss the free annual summit, you can still get access to your own copy of the recordings. Don't miss out.

Get Access To The Migraine World Summit

Get control and get back to your life.



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