Headache – Migraine

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Headache - Migraine

Moderate to severe throbbing or pulsating pain on one side of the head Pain increases on moving and performing day to day activities Sensitivity to light increased Patient may also experience
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Lack of concentration
About 1 out of 3 migraine patients experience temporary symptoms of aura.  Aura is defined as the warning signs that usually develop before experiencing migraine headache, such as
  • Difficulty in vision – seeing zig zag patterns, bright spots, flashing lights or blurred vision
  • Stiffness in neck and shoulder muscles
  • Feeling dizzy
  • Some people experience sensation of pins and tingling in arms and legs
  • Difficulty speaking
Exact cause of migraine is not known but it occurs due to multiple factors Evidence is increasing that genes and family history have a role It is more common in middle age affecting females more than males Factors that trigger migraine Disruption in routines often triggers migraine such as lack of sleep, skipping meals, bowl habits, weather changes (exposing to heat or sun), traveling There are multiple factors that can trigger migraine such as Changes in Eating and Drinking routines
  • Missing meal, delayed meals
  • Not drinking enough water (dehydration: especially in Ramzan)
  • Some people feel migraine after eating chocolates, tea and coffee
Changes in Physical
  • Fatigued, not enough rested
  • Not enough sleep
  • Constipation
  • Travelling/ driving
  • Improper body posture causing neck or shoulder tension
  • Low blood glucose (Hypoglycemic)
Changes in Hormones Level Some women experience migraine during their monthly periods due to changes in hormonal levels Changes in Environmental factors
  • Strong smell, perfumes
  • Bright light/ exposed to sun for long time
  • Computer or TV screens
  • High noise level
  • Changes in physical stress Changes in weather
  • Exposed to smoke or air pollution Changes in Emotions
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Stress
Other factors (medications)
  • Some medicines can cause migraine
  • Some birth-control medications
  • Sleep medicines

There are no specific test to diagnose migraine

Doctors usually diagnose on the basis of clinical symptoms, patient history and pattern of pain. Doctor usually perform physical examination, checking the vision and reflexes of the patient to exclude other similar diseases

It would help in diagnosis to exactly describe the pattern of pain and triggers of migraine that patient may have exposed to.


  • Take over-the-counter pain-killer medications such as paracetamol or ibuprofen
  • It is better to take the pain-killer medications early – do not wait until the pain gets severe
  • Many patients feel better lying in the dark room or sleeping
  • Do not take pain-killer medications too frequently. If pain persists after taking medications, it is advised to see a doctor
  • Avoid factors that trigger migraine (such as caffeine, contraceptive pills, fatigue)
  • Ensure enough sleep
  • Taking meal at regular intervals
  • Regular light exercise (example walking) 20-30 minutes
  • Maintaining blood pressure within the normal range
  • Adopt healthy life-style
  • Avoid alcohol and smoking
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