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Anyone have occular migraines?
Old 08-01-2006, 10:47 AM   #1
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Anyone have occular migraines?

Good grief, I hate getting old These are downright scary!

I have a bad neck problem (bulging disk) which has flared up the past few days. I went to the chiropractor yesterday to get manipulated. I was sitting at my computer this morning when I got a zig zag/flashing C shaped disturbance that went from my right eye and traveled over over the course of 45 minutes to the left eye and out the left side (!). I don't know if the bulging disk in my neck, maniplulation yesterday are related to this visual thing but it eas downright scary. I spoke with my sister who works for an eye doctor and she stated it sounded like occular migraines. A google search yielded the results for occular migraines.

Anyone else have these visual disturbances? I will be calling my doc at 9am...
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Re: Anyone have occular migraines?
Old 08-01-2006, 10:53 AM   #2
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Re: Anyone have occular migraines?

I have the regular kind, but a friend has your kind. She is an RN, and gets a little bit of a warning aura first, then her field of vision in both eyes goes black, starting around the edges. No pain. She has to lie down for anywhere from 30 minutes to more than an hour before they go away. Don't seem to be hormonal like my regular migraines. Fairly infrequent, though. Regular tripto migraine drugs didn't seem to help her.
That sucks, sorry to hear you've got them.
Sarah
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Re: Anyone have occular migraines?
Old 08-01-2006, 11:15 AM   #3
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Re: Anyone have occular migraines?

Quote:
Originally Posted by cube_rat
I was sitting at my computer this morning when I got a zig zag/flashing C shaped disturbance that went from my right eye and traveled over over the course of 45 minutes to the left eye and out the left side (!). I don't know if the bulging disk in my neck, maniplulation yesterday are related to this visual thing but it eas downright scary. I spoke with my sister who works for an eye doctor and she stated it sounded like occular migraines. A google search yielded the results for occular migraines.
Cube,

While migraine can cause the zig zags ("scintillating scotomata" to be exact), it is uncommon to have new onset migraine over age 40. Detached or torn retina can cause the same thing. Get to an ophthalmologist (not an optometrist) sooner rather than later.

Probably a false alarm or atypical migraine, but best to play it safe.* Also, ask your internist about polymyalgia rheumatica with temporal arteritis - can cause neck pain and vision change. All the above are nicely treatable.

I now return you to your regularly scheduled programming.
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Re: Anyone have occular migraines?
Old 08-01-2006, 11:16 AM   #4
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Re: Anyone have occular migraines?

Yeah, I had one of those. *Doc said nothing to worry about, though I'd say Rich's advice is good).

I've never had any migraines, but they run in my family. *I was watching TV a few years ago, and I got exactly what you described. *A C-shaped scintillating zig-zaggy pattern.* It gradually moved to the periphery of my vision. *Really interesting and scary, but a quick call to the doc told me there was nothing to worry about.* "Scintillating scotomata" is also what my doc called it.

When I attended neurology rounds in the 70's (I was a neuroscientist in a previous life), they called stuff like this "migraine sin cephalgia" which literally means "headache without headache" but refers to having some of the symptoms of a migraine headache but without any pain.

I've only had this once, although sometimes I think I see a touch of it in the far periphery.

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Re: Anyone have occular migraines?
Old 08-01-2006, 11:27 AM   #5
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Re: Anyone have occular migraines?

Thanks all. I'm going to call my internist this morning to be on the safe side. Of course if I see him this morning, I'll have white coat syndrome in his office. :
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Re: Anyone have occular migraines?
Old 08-01-2006, 11:36 AM   #6
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Re: Anyone have occular migraines?

Quote:
Originally Posted by TromboneAl
When I attended neurology rounds in the 70's (I was a neuroscientist in a previous life), they called stuff like this "migraine sin cephalgia" which literally means "headache without headache" but refers to having some of the symptoms of a migraine headache but without any pain.
Wow - haven't heard that term in 35 years. Sometimes migraines can present with just vision loss, or scarey stroke-like symptoms: weak arm, loss of speech, gait disturbance.

I once had a lady with bad migraine who developed severe, typical heart attack symptoms. She had normal coronaries on catheterization, but had severe spasm of the coronaries. Actually caused a full-blown heart attack.

So, "what'd you do all day" as a neuroscientist?
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Re: Anyone have occular migraines?
Old 08-01-2006, 12:00 PM   #7
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Re: Anyone have occular migraines?

For those wondering what you "see" with an ocular migraine, I've attached an illustration. This is scary because you can't see!

Attached Images
File Type: jpg ocular.jpg (21.6 KB, 78 views)
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Re: Anyone have occular migraines?
Old 08-01-2006, 12:02 PM   #8
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Re: Anyone have occular migraines?

I have had that type of migraine since I was a teenager. What I get starts as a small bright circle in the center of my field of vision, usually in just one eye. The circle gradually expands as a glowing, swirling band of light that makes it difficult to see. Over a 20 to 30 minute span the swirling expands out of my field of view and the episode is over. I don't get any head pain associated with these. These may not occur at all for several months and then I will get them for 2 to 4 days in a row. I consider myself very fortunate that these are nothing more than a minor inconvenience. Many people have migraines that are quite disabling.

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Re: Anyone have occular migraines?
Old 08-01-2006, 12:56 PM   #9
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Re: Anyone have occular migraines?

I had something in this general area, I woke up with a lump on ther back of my head that appeared that suddenly and felt like I had been hit by a hammer. I didn't think of it as a headache, which I think usually means a pain like in the temples or some area but no symptoms, this was more like a pain in the head from being hit and a lump to show for it. I also had some shoulder & arm pain. And I did have some spots in my vision, not as interesting as the ones described in this thread. I thought this was maybe a cyst as I had one removed from my leg a year earlier. I saw a fiuple doctors but the one who seemed to figure it out was the optomitrist called it a mycrocrnial something but essentially said it was a migrane.

All I can say is that it is mostly gone, the lump is no longer visable although I can feel it out a bit, my vision seems normal. I now just chalk it up to "getting old sucks". But it is not comforting that someting like that can show up so suddenly and not have an obvious cause.
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Re: Anyone have occular migraines?
Old 08-01-2006, 01:03 PM   #10
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Re: Anyone have occular migraines?

cube_rat,

Your illustration closely resembles the symptoms I get.

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Re: Anyone have occular migraines?
Old 08-01-2006, 01:07 PM   #11
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Re: Anyone have occular migraines?

I have had them for about 15 years. *It was very scary at first until I went to the doctor and was diagnosed. *Symptoms are the same as Grumpy describes.
Quote:
Originally Posted by grumpy
What I get starts as a small bright circle in the center of my field of vision, usually in just one eye. The circle gradually expands as a glowing, swirling band of light that makes it difficult to see. Over a 20 to 30 minute span the swirling expands out of my field of view and the episode is over. I don't get any head pain associated with these. These may not occur at all for several months and then I will get them for 2 to 4 days in a row.
For the past 7 months I have been taking a beta blocker for high blood pressure. *One of the side effects is that I haven't had an ocular migraine during that time. *
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Re: Anyone have occular migraines?
Old 08-01-2006, 03:41 PM   #12
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Re: Anyone have occular migraines?

I get the auras w/ only a mild headache. Seems to be triggered by exposure to bright, glaring light. Started as a teen. I've found some control through meditative technique. Hope its not related to a hole in my heart, as I recently read about. Don't need some doc trying to thread a cork stopper up through my groin!
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