From the Division of Pediatric Neurology, Department of Pediatrics, Dalhousie University, and IWK Health Centre, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.
Self-Reported Headache Frequency and Features Associated With Frequent Headaches in Canadian Young Adolescents
Article first published online: 4 JUN 2004
Headache: The Journal of Head and Face Pain
Volume 44, Issue 6, pages 555–561, June 2004
How to Cite
Gordon, K. E., Dooley, J. M. and Wood, E. P. (2004), Self-Reported Headache Frequency and Features Associated With Frequent Headaches in Canadian Young Adolescents. Headache: The Journal of Head and Face Pain, 44: 555–561. doi: 10.1111/j.1526-4610.2004.446003.x
- Issue published online: 4 JUN 2004
- Article first published online: 4 JUN 2004
- Accepted for publication February 6, 2004.
Objective.—To explore the associated factors for frequent headache among young adolescent Canadians.
Methods.—We analyzed the self-administered questionnaire microdata files of the National Longitudinal Survey of Children and Youth (NLSCY: 1996 to 1997). Two thousand and ninety respondents representing 793,100 Canadian youth aged 12 to 13 years were asked how often they had headaches in the previous 6 months.
Results.—Of the 2090 adolescents, 1998 (96%) responded. Frequent headaches of “about once a week” or more often were reported by 26.6% of them aged 12 to 13 years (95% CI: 24.2, 28.6). Frequent headaches appear to be associated with a plethora of risk factors germane to the life experience of these young adolescents. All factors were significant at P < .0001 by chi-square analysis and can be loosely categorized as school-related, lifestyle-related, or involving mental health. A multivariate Classification and Regression Tree (CART) analysis models frequent headaches on a depression scale, a self-esteem scale, and ever having smoked, with 60% sensitivity, and 65% specificity.
Conclusions.—The NLSCY reveals a remarkable insight into headache frequency and the life experience of Canada's young adolescents with frequent headaches.