Migraine epidemiology and comorbidities in Southern Israel: a clinical database study in a universal health coverage setting

Ido Peles, Mohnnad Asla, Mariya Abayev, Michal Gordon, Victor Novack, Rinat Ribalov, Tamar Lengil, Ron Maor, Mayera Elizur, Gal Ifergane

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Background: Understanding migraine epidemiology and its burden is crucial for planning health policies and interventions at the local level as well as at the global level. National policies in Israel rely on global estimations and not on local data since local epidemiologic studies had not previously been performed. In this study, we evaluated the epidemiology of migraine in the southern district of Israel using the electronic medical records database of the largest Israeli health maintenance organization (HMO). Methods: In this population-based, retrospective, observational cohort study, adult migraine patients were identified in the computerized database of the southern district of the Clalit Health Services HMO (total population, 0.75 million). Patients were identified based on recorded diagnosis (International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision) and/or claims for specific anti-migraine medication (triptans) between 2000 and 2018. A 1:2 age-, gender-, and primary care clinic–matched control group was used for evaluation of comorbidities. Results: In 2018, a total of 29,938 patients with migraine were identified out of 391,528 adult HMO members. Most of the patients were women (75.8%), and the mean ± standard deviation age at diagnosis was 36.94 ± 13.61 years. The overall prevalence of migraine (per 10,000) was 764.64 (7.65%), 1143.34 (11.43%) for women and 374.97 (3.75%) for men. The highest prevalence was observed in patients aged 50 to 60 years and 40 to 50 years (1143.98 [11.44%] and 1019.36 [10.19%], respectively), and the lowest prevalence was among patients aged 18 to 30 years and > 70 years (433.45 [4.33%] and 398.49 [3.98%], respectively). Conclusions: This is the first large-scale epidemiologic study of migraine prevalence in Israel. Compared to international estimations, migraine appears to be underdiagnosed in the southern district of Israel.

Original languageEnglish
Article number160
JournalJournal of Headache and Pain
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • Diagnosis
  • Epidemiology
  • Israel
  • Migraine
  • Prevalence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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