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aura without headache
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aura without headache

I get aura without headache several times a year, however I have had 3 this past week.  I always heard it is a benign condition, now I have read it increases the chance for stroke. I am a very healthy 42 yr. old woman, good blood pressure, jog a lot  don't drink or smoke.  Am I going to have a stroke? I am worried.  Any input would great, thanks!
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768044_tn?1294227036
Hi there. Migraines can increase the risk of stroke... but, NO, you are not going to have a stroke just because you get migraines!!!

Just stay healthy! It's good you don't smoke! Keep going to your doctor for check ups. And, keep track of your headaches to see if there are any changes. As there has been a change this week, you should note that... note anything else unusual about this week as well (any stress, any new foods, any strange weather, any allergies, any new medications, etc.) and bring this information to your doctor during your next check up.

You should book an appointment with your family doctor if you see a change in your migraine pattern like you have seen. But, it is not an emergency. Just phone tomorrow during office hours and get an appointment. You don't have to go to a walk-in clinic tomorrow or the ER or anything like that. Just a regular appointment with your family doctor! :)

The following situations are considered SERIOUS EMERGENCIES as far as headaches go:

- A headache that you have never felt before that you would describe as the "worst pain you have ever felt"

If you ever experience that, then call 911 immediately as that can be a sign of a stroke or worse.
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Avatar_f_tn
Thanks for the advice.  I wonder if it is hormonal.  It's the week before my period.  Do you get auras.  Do you know others with aura, but no headache?  Thanks
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768044_tn?1294227036
Hi!

It could totally be hormonal. My migraines are much worse in severity before my period.

And yes, I do know one person, personally, who has aura but no headache ONLY. He works with my father. It took him a long time before he was actually diagnosed with migraines... because he didn't suffer from the headache as well. I also know a lot of other people who sometimes will get aura with no headache even though they usually suffer from headache migraines, including myself.

What I see when I get an aura, I describe as looking like "the ring" on the scary video that kills people from the movie The Ring... the first time I saw it, I didn't know what an auras would look like or anything even though I knew about migraines (I'd never had an aura with migraine before... and it came without a headache that time, so I didn't connect the two either)... I had recently seen the film The Ring and I honestly was so freaked out because even though I knew it couldn't be possible, I thought that somehow the film was real and I was going to die because I had just seen the film a few days prior!!! But... I knew that there wasn't really such a thing as killer videos and I was just freaking out and it must be medical... so I went online and looked up the symptoms and realized that it was connected to my migraines... but I still didn't believe it and figured that maybe I was going crazy or maybe I really was going to die from the killer video in "The Ring" and I only finally believed that what I was seeing was a migraine Aura when I saw some drawings people who suffer from migraine auras drew... and some of them looked just like what I was seeing!!! I honestly wouldn't have gone to bed for days or turned off any of the lights in my house if someone hadn't drawn their aura and posted it on the internet for others to see... that was such a huge relief for me!!!

The migraine medication that I take usually makes the aura go away right away... so, if these auras bother you or last for a long time, you might want to discuss with your doctor about treating them with triptans. I don't know exactly if this is actually a treatment for people who never get the headache part... but, i know there are lots of people on this website who get just the aura, so they'll probably know... but, for me, treating my aura-only migraines with triptans seems to work... but then again, I suffer from aura+headache and headache-only migraines as well.
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi,

What you are getting are migraines. Migraines can occur with or without headache. Stroke and TIA are more common in migraneurs but it does not always happen.
I would suggest you however to get your blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels checked just to be on the safe side and continue with your healthy lifestyle.
Maintain a diary to identify the triggers for these aura attacks. You may also want to try magnesium supplements as they have been known to help greatly with migraine.Let us know if you have more questions.
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Avatar_n_tn
I have had a persistent aura in my right eye for over a year and a half without migraine. I have seen a neuroopthomologist as well as a neurologist  specialzing in prolonged aura. I can tell you my neurologist told me that those with complicated migraine (prolonged aura) have a higher risk of stroke. I am on daily asprin as a preventative and my neurologist had me stop taking birth control. I also have a PFO patent foramen ovale which makes the risk for stoke a bit higher with migraine patients and those with prolonged aura. I would definately see an opthomologist and have them dilate your eyes to check for retinal strokes and any visual impairment and like others have said see you doctor if these symptoms persist.
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Avatar_n_tn
Triptans SHOULD NOT be used with COMPLICATED MIGRAINE aka PROLONGED AURA, I suffer from prolonged aura with and without migraine and I am also an RN, and there is a slightly increased risk of stroke secondary to the cortical spreading depression which is what causes prolonged aura. Cortical spreading depression causes decreased blood flow from the occipital regions through the temporal regions of the brain therefore increasing risk of stroke  Triptans are not to be used with people with this triptans are SSRIs selective seretonin reuptake inhibitors and the cause vasoconstriction. If your doctor ever wants to give you a triptan and you have a prolonged aura you need to question it and do your own research.
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862265_tn?1250870371
I have often wondered what the headaches I get, that aren't REALLY headaches, but a 'blockage' of my vision. I can still see, but my vision is blocked, like holding your hand about 8" in front of my face.  this last about 20 minutes, I usually just lay down and sleep until it's gone,  sometimes, but not very often it's followed with a headache - not as severe as my 'usual' migraines.  This happens about 3-4 times a year, but sometimes as frequent as 2-3 times a week.  I think it's onset but either a FLASH of light, or to many sugar drinks (tea, soda, ...)   is this an AURA Migraine?
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Avatar_n_tn
I have been working on computers when I get what is termed "Optical migraines" with no headache.  My peripheral vision gets wavy like waterfalls and my other vision is so blurred I have to quit working on the computer.  It is scary because I think I'm going blind when it happens.  The last time, I put a wet towel over my eyes and shut my eyes for about an hour.  It seemed to help and my vision went back to normal.  When it happened today, I was unable to work for about a half hour until I could see again.  I was told by an opthamologist assistant that it was "Optical migraines."  I'll get this checked by a doctor if it persists.  So far, I've been lucky and only have had a few episodes of this disturbing event in my eyes.  Reading all the comments here makes me think a lot of people have these symptoms.  It seems to also be called aura migraines and several other names.  I was told by the opthamologist assistant that most have headaches after the blurry wavy vision, so we who don't have the accompanying headaches are very fortunate.
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862265_tn?1250870371
Did you ever go to your Dr to find out any more about this  "OPTICAL MIGRAINE"  I 'd like to know what you found out.
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Avatar_m_tn
I am curious where you read that aura without headache specifically increases risk of stroke.  I have some across a couple articles of interest suggesting that there may be no increased risk of stroke from aura without headache:

http://jnnp.bmj.com/content/55/6/437.abstract
http://stroke.ahajournals.org/cgi/content/full/29/8/1539
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1395415_tn?1280351483
For some ten years I have had once or twice a month a bright scintillating lights, shimmering zig zag lines lasting some 25 minutes. I managed to discover the trigger, which is a special position where I bend over and look down.

After ten years of despair, last year I discorered a position which could controll it. I sit in a chair, entirely still - looking up in the roof, and exhaling slowly air and concentrating with all my mind doing so. Amazingly, the build up to the familiar "ring" slows, reverse and ends within three to five minutes. It is not as easy as it sounds, since my heart is pumping each time the aura occurs - however, it fell unbelievable that it could just go away after all that fear and anxiety.

I would like to hear if others have had the same experience ?? I would also like to hear whether any medicaments could help? Off cause I have been to eye specialists, not able to find anything wrong with the eyes.
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Avatar_f_tn
I have been having auras without the migraine headache for almost 20 yrs.
Sometimes they are back to back all day long. Usually they last 20-30 min, but sometimes they can last for hrs. If there is some medication that would stop them I'd love to know what it is. It is really affecting my quality of life. I've seen several neurologists and they tell me there is nothing you can do to stop these auras.I am thankful that I don't get the headache pain too, but this is really annoying.
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Avatar_f_tn
For years I have had the auras without headaches, but never knew they were migraine-related until recently.  They used to scare me whenever I would get one, but over the years, I have learned to live with them.  They start out tiny, a little dot, & the ring of shimmering light gradually gets bigger & bigger until it is out of my field of vision. It does make it hard to look at the computer or read when this happens, but they don't last long. I can't say I have ever had a migraine headache, though. They are annoying, but after reading all of these comments, I am reassured to know this is fairly common.
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