Migraine is Not a Vascular Headache

Posted on the April 7th, 2014 under Friends by Bertrand Doeuk

Migraine attacks is a common condition and is ranked the top three most prevalent disorder in the world.

Migraine is also ranked the top seventh highest causes of disability worldwide. 1

In accordance to the International Headache Society, migraines are predominantly experienced on one side of the head and face. Symptoms are a throbbing and pulsating like pain, which can also be accompanied by nausea and vomiting, as well as, being sensitive to smell, sound and light. Pain intensity ranges from a moderate to severe level to the point where sufferers can be bedridden during a severe attack.

Migraine sufferers may also experience aura symptoms. Aura symptoms can encompass altered visions where flickering lights, dark or white spots, and multiple lines can be viewed. In some cases temporary loss of their vision also occurs. They may also experience speech disturbances as well as, pins and needles.

These symptoms can last between 4 hours to 72 hours.

 

The misconception of the exact cause of a migraine attack was thought to be due to the expansion and vasodilation of the blood vessels within the head. The pulsating and throbbing pain sensation was believed to be due to an increase in blood pumping around the head to cause a pulsating type migraine pain.

The idea and belief that a migraine was due to the expansion of blood vessels has been proven false. Recent research and studies utilizing transcranial Doppler have shown that migraine is not a vascular headache, and not due to vasodilation of the blood vessels. 2

In fact, studies comparing those suffering from a migraine attack compared to those who were not suffering from a migraine attack, revealed that there was no significant differences with their blood vessels vasodilating and expanding. 3

There has been continuing support and evidence to show this to be the case, which indicates that migraine is not a vascular headache.

The next article will explain the scientific causes of migraines and what triggers a migraine. For further information visit The Brisbane Headache and Migraine Clinic which deals with the treatment of headaches and migraines. Information about this clinic can be found at Headache Brisbane or Brisbane Migraine or the Headache Clinic Brisbane

 

1. Global Burden of Disease Survey 2010

2. (Goadsby, P,J, (2009) The vascular theory of Migraine. A great story wrecked by the facts. Brain, 132 (1), pp 6-7.

3. Thomsen, l. L., Iversen, H.K., & Olesen, J. (1995). Cerebral blood flow velocities are reduced during attacks of unilateral migraine without aura. Cephalaglia, 15(2), 109-116.

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Migraine is Not a Vascular Headache
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Migraine is Not a Vascular Headache
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Migraine attacks is a common condition and is ranked the top three most prevalent disorder in the world. Migraine is also ranked the top seventh highest causes of disability worldwide.
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