Vestibular migraine: Progress in the search for treatments

Nearly 15% of the world’s population has migraine, a condition in which moderate-to-severe headache is associated with neurological abnormalities such as visual dysfunction, sensitivity to light, disordered speech, nausea, vomiting, or dizziness. While we now have many options to treat the head pain associated with migraine, we are often helpless in treating these other associated neurological symptoms. One of the most bothersome neurological symptoms patients report is vertigo or dizziness-associated with migraine, a condition we call vestibular migraine, and in which patients feel as though they, or the environment around them, is spinning. At present, we have no adequate treatment for vestibular migraine. What is vestibular migraine? Vestibular migraine is often diagnosed when vertigo occurs during a migraine headache, or shortly before or after one. It remains unclear precisely what causes vestibular migraine, but one hypothesis is that neural connections between the sensory systems, which process head pain, and the vestibular systems, which establish a sense of spatial awareness and balance, could communicate during a migraine attack. Treatment options for vestibular migraine are extremely limited, so current treatment is focused primarily on reducing the frequency of migraine attacks. Vagal nerve stimulation may reduce migraine-associated vertigo Emerging research suggests that a new application of an existing treatment may hold some promise. The treatment, called...
Source: Harvard Health Blog - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Headache Source Type: blogs

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