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High Homocysteine Levels Associated with Migraine Headache

Most people are familiar with the relationship between high levels of the amino acid homocysteine and an increased risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke. What's new is the link between homocysteine and migraine headache.

Doctors in Australia who monitor their patients' homocysteine levels and treat any problem with vitamins B6, B12, folic acid and trimethyl glycine (betaine TMG), frequently find that reducing homocysteine levels also reduces or eliminates migraine headaches in those patients.

New research has found a genetic mutation known as C677T. This mutation has been known to result in other than normal levels of homocysteine, and has been found in a significant number of patients who suffer from migraines. It now appears that as many as 10% of those who suffer from migraines may do so because of elevated homocysteine levels. Currently studies are underway at Griffith University in Australia to determine how lowering homocysteine levels with vitamins can reduce migraine problems.

Patients may notice a difference in their migraines within a couple of weeks of supplementation with vitamin B12, B6, folic acid and betaine. Those with a cardiovascular problem may experience a higher rate of homocysteine induced migraine headaches.

See also: Homocysteine Levels Associated with Coronary Artery Disease


Lea RA, Ovcaric M, Sundholm J, MacMillan J, Griffiths LR. The methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase gene variant C677T influences susceptibility to migraine with aura. BMC Med. 2004 Feb 12;2:3.

Key concepts: homocysteine, migraine headache