Migraines and the (Moderna) COVID-19 vaccine

WorkSafeBC Evidence-Based Practice Group, Martin CW
Record ID 32018005171
Authors' objectives: To determine whether there is any evidence that the COVID-19 mRNA vaccination, particularly from Moderna, is (causally) associated with new onset of migraines.
Authors' results and conclusions: Eleven studies were retrieved in full, however, five studies did not provide any relevant data and will not be discussed further. Of the six studies that were thought to be relevant, one study provided evidence on the improvement/elimination of migraines after patients receiving Pfizer or Astra Zeneca vaccines. Data on these six studies are summarized in Table 1 (can be found in our paper). Although the studies may potentially provide anecdotal data on the development of migraines post COVID-19 (any) vaccination, none of these studies provided population level and most likely not even individual level data to establish a (causal) association in migraine development post COVID-19 (any) vaccination. Further, none of the available migraineous adverse event was associated with Moderna vaccination. At present, there is no data reported on the development of migraines post Moderna COVID-19 vaccination. There is some data reported on the development of migraines post Pfizer, Janssen or Astra Zeneca COVID-19 vaccination. However, the available data may not be enough to establish any population and/or individual causal association as proposed by the WHO in assessing causal association of adverse events following immunization. At present, there is anecdotal evidence that COVID-19 vaccination may eliminate migraine symptoms by inhibiting synthesis of pro-inflammatory cytokines.
Authors' methods: A systematic literature search was conducted on commercial medical literature databases on May 4, 2023. The search was undertaken by employing a simple combination of keywords. No limitations on date of publication were implemented in any of these searches. A manual search was also conducted on the references of the articles that were retrieved in full.
Project Status: Completed
Year Published: 2023
English language abstract: An English language summary is available
Publication Type: Mini HTA
Country: Canada
MeSH Terms
  • Migraine Disorders
  • COVID-19
  • COVID-19 Vaccines
  • Coronavirus Infections
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • mRNA
  • RNA messenger
  • pfizer
  • moderna
  • bioNTech
  • BNT162b2
  • mRNA-1273
  • vaccine
  • vaccination
  • migraine
Organisation Name: WorkSafeBC
Contact Address: 6591 Westminster Highway, Richmond, BC, V7C 1C6 Canada. Tel: 604-231-8417; Fax: 604-279-7698
Contact Name: ebpg@worksafebc.com
Contact Email: ebpg@worksafebc.com
Copyright: WorkSafe BC
This is a bibliographic record of a published health technology assessment from a member of INAHTA or other HTA producer. No evaluation of the quality of this assessment has been made for the HTA database.