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BMJ 2010; 340 doi: (Published 24 March 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;340:c1586

Frequent headaches in children are possibly more of a problem than once thought. A study showed that in a general population of pre-adolescents in Brazil, the prevalence of chronic daily headaches was 1.68%—more in girls than boys—and high-frequency episodic headaches was 2.52%. Both sorts of headaches are more common in non-white children and were seen in children as young as five years old. School staff are poorly trained to identify and treat these children. The outcome for many is often learning problems, anxiety, and disability (Neurology 2010;74:903-8 doi:10.1212/WNL.0b013e3181d561a2).

People are at risk of developing Alzheimer’s if they have a parent with the disease, a study has shown. The study of cognitively normal people with a parent with late onset Alzheimer’s, using positron emission tomography scans, revealed increased fibrillar amyloid-beta deposition in the healthy subjects. This is a pathological hallmark of Alzheimer’s. People with affected parents, notably their mothers, had more fibrillar amyloid-beta in parts of the brain vulnerable to Alzheimer’s, than control subjects. The authors suggest their findings may motivate more research into familiar transmission and parent-of-origin effects …

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