Migraine Awareness Week

October 7th, 2013
Migraine Awareness Week

With Migraine Awareness Week recently taking place in early September, we’d like to touch on the different types of migraines in order to increase awareness of the nature surrounding the disease. Were you aware that there at least ten different forms of migraine?

  • Classic Migraine – otherwise known as “Migraine with Aura”. Symptoms include severe headaches, in addition to impairments to vision and other senses as well as speech. All of these symptoms usually follow the sudden appearance of an aura in one eye, which is only visible to the sufferer.
  • Common Migraine – alternatively named “Migraine without Aura”. This is characterised by severe throbbing and pulsating headaches on one side of the head.
  • Basilar-Type Migraine – identified by an aura produced from disturbances to the brain stem. This type of migraine causes diminished levels of consciousness and temporary blindness.
  • Silent Migraine – known technically as “Acephalic”. This may be differentiated from the previous two examples by the lack of a headache. Other symptoms such as nausea may present themselves during this type of attack.
  • Abdominal Migraine – suffered by 2% of all children, yet are rare in adulthood. Symptoms such as: nausea, vomiting and stomach pains are usually present and it is children who have a family history of migraines that are at risk. Victims are likely to suffer from migraine headaches as they get older.
  • Hemiplegic Migraine – fortunately, this is experienced by very few people as it generally results in hospitalisation. The symptoms for this kind of attack resemble those of a stroke, epilepsy or other neurological disorders. They can result in limb weakness and numbness following an attack.
  • Optical Migraine – also known as “Ocular” and “Ophthalmic”. This affects vision and symptoms can range from mild to severe. It is believed, in some quarters, that this is a symptom of a “Silent Migraine” and should not have a distinct classification.
  • Retinal Migraine – obviously, this also affects vision. Symptoms involve disturbances in only one eye and can include observing flashing lights and temporary blindness in more severe cases.
  • Status Migrainous – the most severe form of attack. These can last for 72 hours or even longer. Symptoms are so severe that they heavily increase the chances of strokes, comas and even death. They require immediate medical attention.
  • Transformed migraine – these begin as episodic and then begin to increase in frequency over a period of months or years, until they are experienced on a daily basis. The intensity of the attacks range from mild to severe.

While no actual permanent cure, many find ways to prevent and control their migraines. Some people claim that wearing tinted glasses can help to relieve migraines.


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