Ocular Migraine: Symptoms, Causes and Treatment

Ocular migranes are transient visual disturbances that can have an effect on either one or both eyes. They might be followed by a one sided throbbing headache referred as classic migrane. 

Ocular migrane symptoms include enlarged blind spot (scotoma), zig zag lines across vision, tunneling of vision. Sixty percent of the patients experience a prodrome, a feeling that they will experience the migrane soon. Although the symptoms are quite frightening they typically hamless and visual symptoms self resolve with in 20-30 minutes without treatment or headache. If you are having an ocular migrane, it's important to stop what you are doing especially if you are driving or operating heavy machinery and wait for the symptoms to subside. 

Ocular Migranes are believed to be caused by the same mechanisms as migranes. They generally have a genetic component as 70 percent of patients have a family history of migranes.  Experts believe that ocular migrane happens when blood vessels constrict, and that dicreases the blood flow to the retina. As the blood vessels relax the normal blood flow restores to the retina and visual disturbances subside. 

Stress, smoking and lack of sleep may trigger migrane. 

You should consider having a comprehensive eye examination with you optometrist if you are having unusual visual symptoms to rule out sight threatening conditions such a detached retina, which requires immediate attention. 

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