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Headache & Migraine

Migraine is a medical condition that involves severe, recurring headaches, and other symptoms. Before the headache, there may be sensory changes that are known as an aura.


What is a migraine headache?

A migraine headache is a type of headache that tends to recur and causes moderate to severe pain. The pain is often described as throbbing or pulsing and usually begins on one side of the head. Migraine headaches are worsened by physical activity, light, sound or physical movement. The pain typically last from 4 hours up to 3 days. You may be sensitive to light, sound and even smell. And you may also experience nausea and/or vomiting.


What causes a migraine?

Migraine headache pain results from signals interacting among your brain, blood vessels and surrounding nerves. During a headache, specific nerves of the blood vessels are activated and send pain signals to the brain. It’s not clear, however, why these signals are activated in the first place.


There is a migraine “pain center,” or generator, in the mid-brain area. A migraine begins when overactive nerve cells send out impulses to your blood vessels. This causes the release of prostaglandins, serotonin and other substances that cause swelling of the blood vessels in the vicinity of the nerve endings, resulting in pain.


What are the symptoms of migraines?

The symptoms of migraine include:


Headache pain. Pain is described as a pounding or throbbing. It can begin as a dull ache that develops into throbbing pain. The pain worsens with physical activity. The pain can begin as mild, moderate or severe. If left untreated, the headache will become moderate to severe. The pain can shift from one side of the head to the other, or it can affect the front of the head or feel like it’s affecting the whole head. Most migraines last about 4 hours, although severe ones can last much longer and even become daily. Having two to four migraine headaches per month is common. However, some people have headaches daily; others only get a migraine once or twice a year.

Sensitivity to light, noise and odors.

Nausea and vomiting, stomach upset, abdominal pain.

Loss of appetite.

Feeling very warm (sweating) or cold (chills).

Pale color (pallor).

Feeling tired


Blurred vision.

Tender scalp.

Diarrhea (rare).

Fever (rare).

Migraine treatment

Medication: Paracetamol or aspirin works well for many migraine attacks. Take a dose as early as possible after symptoms begin. If you take painkillers early enough, they often reduce the severity of the headache, or stop it completely. A lot of people do not take a painkiller until a headache becomes really bad. This is often too late for the painkiller to work well.


Injections: For treating chronic migraines and headaches, injections like the Occipital nerve block and Sphenopalatine ganglion block have proven to be effective. BOTOX® injections are the first and only FDA-approved preventive treatment proven to reduce migraine and headache days every month.