Migraine Journey Wednesdays - Francois Cadiou and the Creation of Migraine Buddy
Over the past few months, many of you have shared your migraine journeys with the community. Today, I am happy to share Migraine Buddy’s story as well as mine!
Migraine Buddy's Story
My migraines are intimately related to my father's health; I faced my first migraine after his first stroke 15 years ago. Actually, Migraine Buddy was not meant to help me in dealing with my own migraines at all. The "trigger" for Migraine Buddy came from another motivation.
In 2012, my father suddenly went missing. For 3 days, I had no idea where he was, how he was doing, and neither did his family and friends. As it turned out, he was in a state of coma, at a nearby hospital, after a stroke. Luckily, he had felt the stroke coming. He left his apartment in time but lost consciousness on the street. Without any identification papers, nobody knew his identity and no one knew who to contact.
Living abroad at that time and after 2 days with no news, I contacted all the hospitals in his town and found a reanimation department with an unidentified patient. It was him! After seeing him come back to life for a second time, I was determined to change my career path. While already working in traditional healthcare, I thought I needed to focus on solutions for my father. I never wanted someone to be taken aback by a situation like this too.
I envisioned an app and a clinical platform where anyone could simultaneously monitor their respective condition and share it with their loved ones. Ideally, they’d also be able to acquire the right support in times of need while progressively changing the way we approach clinical research. I made use of what I had learned during my years of working in healthcare, developing new drugs and new medical devices. This was how Healint, the company behind Migraine Buddy, was formed a few months later.
Well enough about me, I’m sure you’d be more interested about how Migraine Buddy can make a difference and what we have in store for the future, right?
Migraine Buddy Today
In the past five years, the Migraine Buddy community has grown by leaps and bounds. With the dedication of the Migraine Buddy team and thanks to your support, over 1.2 million people have used the app over the course of their migraine journey. It is, of course, our vision to be able to reach out to help even more people who suffer from migraines. This is only possible if Migraine Buddy remains freely accessible.
To ensure we are able to keep Migraine Buddy accessible to all, we have tested and continue to test ways to finance Migraine Buddy, while simultaneously making efforts to push the healthcare system to do more for migraineurs. This is why the research we facilitate and support is so important, so that we can show the effectiveness and reality of the various treatments which impact our lives.
For example, you may have come across the news that talks about our collaboration with Novartis (Switzerland). It details our testing of a new coaching service that will help migraineurs deal with the daily challenges imposed by migraines. If we were to show you a snippet, here’s a look at how migraine can impact someone’s ability to work. The average number of work days missed in a year for a migraineur reaches up to 32 days and this is only an average here! So don’t fret if you’re vexing over missing a day of work because of your migraines, you’re definitely not alone in this!
(If you want to take a look at the full report, you may do so here!)
The research above is to push awareness and recognition of migraine. We are also pushing on the fundamental understanding of migraine and its treatments. Now, I personally wish to have YOU, as a member of the community, to be giving the direction for our coming research projects. More updates on this will come very soon!
We also want to keep you informed of the latest news in terms of new treatments - such as the new generation treatment for episodic migraine, the anti-CGRPs. What’s more, the good news is that it seems to be working really well for many, based on what we see! But there are still challenges, as this does not work for everybody. This still requires further research on our part for sure
At this point in time, we would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has so graciously opted to share anonymous, aggregated statistics about their migraine experiences. Thank you for your constant support and efforts; your contribution is making the change we hope to bring to this community today.
The Future of Migraine Buddy
Moving forward, the Migraine Buddy team is working hard on developing new tools, reports, and features so that the best services are at your fingertips. We are also working at revamping Migraine Buddy, making sure it caters to your needs further, while working on the crowdsourced statistics we are all building together.
We appreciate all of the love and support you have shown towards Migraine Buddy, and most notably, the feedback you have shared through user interviews and all our other communication channels. We are conscious that we have a lot more to build and many more improvements to deliver. Thanks to your support and positive messages, we are always charged with energy to work towards our goal!
If you have any questions on this or our future plans, please feel free to leave us a comment down below! From everyone at the Migraine Buddy team, we wish you many migraine-free days ahead!