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  • A silent migraine has all of the prominent symptoms of a migraine, but it occurs without causing pain. Examining this phenomenon is one more step on the road to accurately understanding the causes of migraine headaches.

    Features

    Migraines are caused by a neurological disorder that affects more than 29.5 million Americans, according to the National Headache Foundation. There are four different phases of a migraine, which include the Prodrome, Aura, Pain and Recovery phases. A silent migraine will have some of these phases, but there's always an absence of pain.

    The Facts

    Silent migraines are usually diagnosed by the presence of the aura phase, without the onset of the pain phase. The aura is caused by the way nerve cells are firing in the brain. Subsequently, the pain phase is now believed to be caused by the swelling of blood vessels on the surface of the brain.

    Significance

    According to WebMD, nine out of ten people surveyed reported not being able to work or even function normally during a silent migraine. Half of the people who were surveyed reported needing bed rest during a migraine.

    Prevention

    Keeping a silent migraine diary will help uncover some of the external events that may trigger an individual's silent migraine, such as food and environmental factors. If migraines become chronic, there are preventative medications available.

    Warning

    Researchers at the National Institute of Health of discovered that middle-aged women who suffer from migraines with aura are more likely to have brain tissue damage in the cerebellum (also known as brain lesions).

    Source:

    National Headache Foundation

    WebMD--Silent Migraines

    National Institute of Health News

    More Information:

    Migraine Awareness Group: A National Understanding for Migraineurs

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