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Jan 22, 2008


This type of Headache occurs when blood vessels of the head and neck constrict, resulting in a decrease in blood flow to the vessels. A severe pain felt on one, and sometimes, both sides of the head, mostly in the front around the temples or behind one eye or ear, with an associated feeling of nausea, vomiting, visual disturbances, sickness and sensitivity to light and sound. Migraine can occur any time of the day, though it often starts in the morning. The pain can last a few hours or up to one or two days.
It is more common in females than males (3:1) and may occur in childhood, adolescent and adult life. Most often, migraine affects people between the ages of 15 and 55.

Factors that have been identified as being associated with migraine:
  • family history of migraine.
  • prolonged muscle tension and stress.
  • alcohol use.
  • smoking or exposure to tobacco smoke.
  • lack of sleep.
  • for women, menstrual periods and the use of oral contraceptives.
  • They are more common in women.
  • Migraine often becomes less severe and frequent with age.
    certain foods such as chocolate, nuts and fermented or pickled condiments, as well as foods containing the amino acid tyramine (aged cheese, red wine, smoked fish) and foods containing preservatives and artificial sweeteners.
Causes of migraine

One theory about the cause of migraine is the blood flow theory. Blood vessels either narrow or expand. This type of Headache occurs when blood vessels of the head and neck constrict, resulting in a decrease in blood flow to the vessels. And when the blood vessels expand, they press on nerves nearby, which causes pain.

Next theory is related with chemical changes in the brain. Migraine may be due to abnormalities in the channels within cells that transport the electrical ions calcium, magnesium, sodium, and potassium. Calcium channels appear to play a particularly critical role in migraine patients:

Calcium channels regulate the release of serotonin, an important neurotransmitter in the migraine process. (A neurotransmitter is a chemical messenger that allows communication between nerves in the brain.)

Abnormalities in serotonin levels have been observed in both tension-type and migraine headache sufferers. Altered levels of other neurotransmitters, importantly dopamine and stress hormones, also occur with migraine and tension-type headaches

When some Chemical changes are interrupted like if messages from one cell to another, including the messages to blood vessels to get narrow or expand, is interrupted, migraines can occur.

The latest theory believes that some Genes are responsible for migraine; about 50% of People who get migraines may inherit abnormal genes that control the functions of certain brain cells.

Diagnosis of migraine

There are no blood tests or imaging techniques that can be used to diagnose migraine headaches. A diagnosis will be made on the basis of history and physical exam, and, if necessary, tests may be necessary to rule out other diseases or conditions that may be causing the headaches. It is important to choose a doctor who is sensitive to the needs of headache sufferers and aware of the latest advances in treatment.

What a patient should describe for Accurate Diagnosis :

  1. Duration and frequency of Headache.
  2. Recent changes in their character.
  3. The location of the pain.
  4. The type (e.g., throbbing or steady pressure).
  5. The intensity of the headache.
  6. Associated symptoms, such as visual disturbances or nausea and vomiting.
  7. Behaviors during a Headache. This may help distinguish between migraine and tension headaches.
The first and the foremost aim of treatment is to find out precipitation factors and to avoid them i.e. alcohol, oral contraceptives, dietary factors should be stopped immediately.

Acute attacks of migraine should be treated by medicines, On the advice of the physician, choose drugs with as few side effects as possible. Patients should discuss various methods for administering the medication (pills, injections, nasal spray, or rectal suppositories) and begin with one they believe will be the least distressing.

Treat the attack rapidly, within an hour of symptom onset if possible. Start with low doses first and build up dosage slowly.

Homeopathy has more then 100 medicines for Migraine. Homeopathic medicines are prescribed on individuality of patient, detail symptoms, modalities of pain symptoms, mental attitudes, behavior pattern of patient, environmental liking and disliking, eating habits and so on. Homeopathic medicines not only prescribed on pain symptoms but it take note of patients detail study.

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