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Family ecology in children with primary headache


The focus of this paper is the family factors associated with primary headache in children between 8 and 14 years. We studied the differences in the family ecology between 32 children with headaches and 32 healthy controls. The families were comparable for socio-economic status and children's age. We examined various aspects of the family connectedness, daily workload, social network and support, ecological fit and resilience using an Italian version of the Ecocultural Family Interview. Families of juvenile headache patients have less resilience in using their subsistence base, less social support and are less closely knitted than the control families. No difference was found for the amount of domestic workload. These findings suggest that psychosocial environment and family ecology are relevant to children's headaches, and that clinical support can be planned to sustain parents of children affected by primary headache.

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Received: 8 May 2002, Accepted in revised form: 17 July 2002

Correspondence to P.A. Battistella

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Napoli, U., Axia, V. & Battistella, P. Family ecology in children with primary headache. J Headache Pain 3, 149–154 (2002).

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