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A Worse Visual Migraine

Last night I had a Visual Migraine that was significantly worse than the previous ones. It started in the usual manner (flickering lights in my central vision and an inability to read text on a computer screen in a font that is normally quite readable) but then developed a new feature. Grey clouds appeared in the periphery of my vision which left me with only central vision which was obscured by flickering lights.

About an hour later it was gone. I’m glad that I don’t drive much, such limited vision is enough to allow me to use public transport without serious problems (although crossing a road could be interesting). Spending an hour in a parked car at the side of a road waiting for a migraine to go away is not something I’m looking forward to.

6 comments to A Worse Visual Migraine

  • Perhaps you already know this book, but just in case I’d like to comment it was a great help for me to understand migraines from Oliver Sacks’ must read “Migraine”.

    — fxn (via Advogato)

  • I started getting swimming vision & painful mind-wiping headaches, oh, let me see… about 25 years ago. The distortion either looked like bizarre lenses in glasses, or “swam” like water running over my eyes.

    The MD’s prescribed stuff like Migral, which sort of made the pain distant but didn’t exactly leave me functional while it worked.

    I got to the state where I was spending 2-3 days a week under various tablets, completely fuzzy & nebulous, then one day I had to install a system for Dr Mike McKibbin, a chiropractor in Attadale, Perth, and got slapped down by a headache/vision attack while I was working on that, & couldn’t finish it. So he stood me in front of his xray machine, zapped me, developed those, straightened my back up (well… bent it to the correct curves, really) & “presto” I was as right as rain in about 20 minutes.

    I’ve run into a variety of Chiropractors since, many of them very good & competent (no obvious visible clues, big/small neat/cluttered male/female all basically similar), a few of whome achieved basically nothing. It’s been about 5 months since I was adjusted, & I’m starting to feel the need (slamming your head into a road tends to do that :-) so I’ll drop in & see Dr Robert Charles Scott while I’m in Perth next month.

  • Tel

    The most common types of headaches are dehydration (because people simply forget to drink enough water and drink sweet drinks and/or alcohol instead) and caffeine addiction (which is extremely common) — withdrawal from caffeine causes headaches. Neither of these would be as severe as what you describe.

    Do a search on “Cerebral Aneurysm”, it is uncommon but it happens. Blood vessels sometimes don’t form properly and make a bit of a knot that bulges under pressure (causing headaches, sometimes really bad headaches, also loss of vision). If it ever bursts and starts to bleed then that’s bad — it can kill you, or cause brain damage. There’s no way to see the bulge without a brain scan, might be something to think about.

  • etbe

    Tel: It’s something to consider, however I have already had advice from an opthalmologist about the vision problem – who determined that it was a visual migraine. Also I don’t get headaches, just loss of vision and disorientation (probably mostly caused by the loss of vision).

  • Sofia Hlinovsky

    Can someone help me, I am just doing some research.

    Would any severe suffers be prepared to take a preventative medicine everyday if it could help reduce the frequency and severity of migraines?

    Thanks for your help

  • ElTchoupi

    Hi Sofia,
    Sorry about my English: I’m French and the subject is not very frequent in my discussions…
    Yes indeed, it can help: I started having migraines a few years ago but not very severe ones. In 2005, I had a 10 days crisis (believe me, you don’t want to know how painful this is) so I went to the hospital and after a lot of exams, my neurologist gave me my new medicine: one at diner everyday: I now have 5 10 times fewer migraines than before ! believe me or not, but I went to this neurologist on month later, just say “THANK YOU!” !
    PS: He also gave so pills which allow me to “kill the migraine” in one or two hours (which is very short for me!).

    Good luck fighting this…