Ocular migraine

Refers to a number of migraine subtypes that are characterized by a variety of visual disturbances including visual loss, blind spots, zig-zag lines, or seeing stars.

Migraine aura is considered to be a result of abnormal electrical activity involving certain regions of the cortex of the brain.

This abnormal electrical activity spreads across the cortex at a slow rate of about 3mm per minute and this spread is responsible for the growth and movement of the visual disturbance over the 20-60 minutes that the visual aura lasts.

These visual changes may occur without any accompanying head pain.

Migraine with aura: impairs vision, with symptoms like flashes of light, blind spots, seeing stars or patterns and other minor sight issues that go away after a short period; can also affect other senses and interfere with speech, motor skills or other central nervous symptoms; can occur with headache or without, and is typically short in duration.

Aura symptoms appear in conjunction with head pain, usually occur between the premonitory phase and the peak pain phase of migraine, warning of an impending attack and when the head pain itself hits.

Aura symptoms may last more than 1 hour in about 20% of individuals.

Aura symptoms and may follow the onset of head pain in some instances.

Migraine with aura occurs in 25-30 percent of people with migraine.

Less than 20% of individuals with migraine visual aura have the aura phase with every migraine attack.

Retinal Migraine refers to visual symptoms occurring in only one eye before or during the headache phase of a migraine attack.

Retinal Migraine symptoms is usually more significant than aura symptoms, and include decreased vision, the appearance of twinkling lights and temporary blindness.

Retinal migraine can lead to irreversible visual loss.

Retinal migraine may be due electrical disturbances at the back of the eye in the retina, or it may be due to a reduction in blood flow to the retina.

Harsh lights and electronic screens can be triggers for ocular migraine, and eye strain from staring at a screen for long periods of time, spending time in fluorescent or other harsh lighting, driving long distances and other taxing visual activities can increase your risk for attacks.

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