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Migraine Visual Aura Simulation

A website that allows people who don't experience these to see just what we migraineurs see during the visual aura.
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I am one of the unlucky many who experience classic migraines, which are preceeded by a visual aura.

What does this aura look like? Mine tend to fit the usual descriptions: flashing, zig-zag patterns, blinding an area in my field of vision. I read that the exact effect is different from person to person, but for me, they tend to start out as a small, blinding dot that reminds me of what it looks like after accidentally being blinded by a glare or the sun. The dot starts to flash and grow over the next half hour to hour, resembling a C, a backwards C, a sideways V, or even an oval or complete circle. The pattern tends to be off-center as it grows and gradually moves to the outer edges of my field of vision. The pattern looks to me like a distinct flashing chain of connected triangles.

Although I've read various descriptions on the web about how these visual disturbances look to migraineurs like myself, I would still like to find a site where I can compare with others and also display visually, via an animated gif or even an applet, or perhaps an effect that follows the mouse, since the actual effect follows whereever I look (I can't escape it by looking around).

If anyone's found something like this already, please post a link so I can see.

XSarenkaX, Mar 27 2003

MAGNUM: Migraine Awareness Group http://www.migraines.org
About migraines [XSarenkaX, Oct 05 2004, last modified Oct 17 2004]

Target Migraine Research http://www.abpi.org...ils/targetMigraine/
This may be useful for some people [sufc, Oct 05 2004, last modified Oct 17 2004]

Epilepsy Guide.Covers most things http://www.faqs.org...icine/epilepsy-faq/
This is a guide I use to give out to new members of staff in the hellhole that I worked in [sufc, Oct 05 2004, last modified Oct 17 2004]

Hasstedt's link http://www.pbase.com/image/18772316.jpg
Stick_link_here [squeak, Oct 05 2004, last modified Oct 17 2004]

Sunglass Hut http://www.sunglasshut.com/
My neurologist suggested getting a pair of high-quality sunglasses to help decrease discomfort in the bright sunlight. There is a lot of detail on their products at this website. [XSarenkaX, Oct 05 2004, last modified Oct 17 2004]

Symptoms and Description of Migraine http://health.yahoo...GiAV8i861bUo9sJvLcF
There are many variables to this illness. Check yours here. [XSarenkaX, Oct 05 2004, last modified Dec 19 2006]

Seasonale http://seasonale.com/
Get the "quarterlies" instead of the "monthlies". [XSarenkaX, Oct 05 2004, last modified Oct 17 2004]

LASIK http://www.lasikeye...m/lasik-surgery.asp
Brief description of the procedure [XSarenkaX, Oct 05 2004, last modified Oct 17 2004]

Support for Migraineurs: resources to help you http://headaches.ab...mig_supp_letter.htm
Lots of useful stuff on this page... [XSarenkaX, Oct 05 2004, last modified Oct 17 2004]

Migraine Aura Foundation http://www.migraine-aura.org
There are some interesting depictions of the aura here. Click "Migraine Aura" at the top for some great samples. [XSarenkaX, Aug 15 2005, last modified May 14 2008]

BBC radio 4 Programme http://www.bbc.co.u...ckup_20040304.shtml
worth listening to for sufferers + good links on page [xenzag, Jul 21 2006]

Migraine art http://www.migraine...25429/index_en.html
Depictions of "scintillating scotoma" by various artists (click the forward/back arrows for more) [wbeaty, Oct 23 2006]

Fibromyalgia Symptoms http://www.webmd.co...bromyalgia-symptoms
Migraines are part of the "fibro" package. [XSarenkaX, May 14 2008]

Migraine Auras: When the Visual World Fails by Richard Grossinger http://www.amazon.c...19X/ref=rdr_ext_tmb
This book mentions this post, with some quotes! See page 16 and on. [XSarenkaX, Aug 22 2011]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Visual_snow [2 fries shy of a happy meal, Feb 16 2013]

http://en.wikipedia...entoptic_phenomenon [2 fries shy of a happy meal, Feb 16 2013]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palinopsia [2 fries shy of a happy meal, Feb 16 2013]

Why yes... yes I do see the light. http://www.iovs.org.../2627/F4.medium.gif
used to think everybody did. [2 fries shy of a happy meal, Feb 20 2013]

Higer Order Aberrations of the eye. http://www.allabout...ons/aberrations.htm
[2 fries shy of a happy meal, Feb 20 2013]


       As you can see, the depictions [Dimandja] found vary according to each person's perceptions. There seems yet to be something in motion, though, to show how the patterns evolve. Also, they are depicted without any overlay of a view. The mouse cursor idea I mentioned would sort of demonstrate how the pattern makes what you're looking at difficult to see.
XSarenkaX, Mar 27 2003

       I, too, am a classic migraine sufferer (or was, they seemed to have disappeared in the last two years and neither me nor my doctors can figure out what changed or why--not that I'm complaining or anything)   

       For me, zig zag patterns in blue and yellow; a horizontal line that cuts my field-of-vision in half and makes the top part out of register with the bottom; a sense that there is smoke in the air and the crescent shaped thingy that looks like it's composed of little cascading bars are all part of the visual phenomenon.   

       Also, I get the sensation that there is a wind on my face.   

       If it weren't for the nausea and oh-my-gawd pain, it might be kind of fun.
bristolz, Mar 27 2003

       Bizarrely, it seems to me, I experience the visual aura periodically, but not the headache. I've been assured by more than one doctor that it's a migraine aura I'm experiencing, and not some other problem with my eyes. At any rate, bris, from my perspective it's really not all that entertaining without the pain and nausea, after all. Mostly it's just irritating because it prevents me from reading for a while.
beauxeault, Mar 27 2003

       My father has "painless migraine" with just weird visual stuff. My Mother, on the other hand, would get taken out of service for three days or so.   

       I guess it was destiny for me.
bristolz, Mar 27 2003

       i give this a croissant, i get migraines, and when people say, "what are they?", it's so hard to explain. adding general feelings of nausea and lethargy would be tricky though...
iain, Mar 27 2003

       A friend of mine felt the on-set of a migraine just before we started a charity football match back in November. Five minutes later she collapsed and went blind. Turned out she had a stroke. At 19. While a migraine may make you want to end it all, it could be worse. She's fine now, if you're wondering :-) Croissant for the idea. I've never had one and it's made me wonder on occasion.   

       @ bristolz - that wind you feel is me. Sometimes I like to stand behind you and play with your mind.   

       @ dimadja - your link - wasn't that an energy monster in Star Trek? Maybe what you have isn't a migraine. It's weird aliens!
sambwiches, Mar 27 2003

       [sambwiches] no wonder I get headaches.
bristolz, Mar 27 2003

       My neurologist, who is also a migraineur, said that if it didn't hurt, people would pay for it.   

       Mine resembles a Bridget Riley op-art painting with psychedlic day-glo borders around the black and white zig-zag of the primary design.   

       And it wiggles. Oh, my.
grecosartre, Mar 27 2003

       I never get headaches of any sort, so I learned a lot from this posting. Thanks [XSX].
Shz, Mar 28 2003

       I have always assumed (being the sympathetic soul that I am) that about 80% of people who say they have a "migraine" are just being marred (pathetic/soft/dramatic). But loads of you lot seem to have them and, quite worryingly, I get these too. Mine start as a flashing, pulsating C that grows and flips until I cant see. Then something smacks me between the eyes! Is this a migraine then?
squeak, Mar 28 2003

       Also, the C only ever appears in the right side of my vision. The drawing in the links all seem to be on the left side. Is there a reason for this??
squeak, Mar 28 2003

       Do any of you with migraines have any warning signs or triggers.I'm asking because until June last year I worked with people with Epilepsy and I wondering if they had anything in common.
sufc, Mar 28 2003

       [squeak]: Much about migraines and the auras that can occur with or without the headache pain is unexplained, but what you describe closely resembles my experience. I used to only get the growing C shaped auras on the right side, and if a headache followed, it was always then on the left side of my head. I think it's just coincidence that the drawings linked here all seem to be on the same side.   

       I used not to get the headaches at all at first, and even went to get my eyes checked, where I first heard the diagnosis "occular migraines". They now occur more frequently, on either left or right, and are usually followed by a headache, which is always on the opposite side.   

       My personal theory is that the birth control pills I am on right now are a major cause or trigger. I state this because I never used to get auras before taking the Pill, and they sort of went away during the year or so I was off them. I also seem to be extra photophobic now and then, even when auras don't occur.   

       You may want to find yourself a good neurologist if they bother you much.
XSarenkaX, Mar 28 2003

       Ive put a link up which may be useful.
sufc, Mar 28 2003

       To tell the truth, my visual aura before migrains usually look like sperm. A bright silvery light that swims around in my vision and leaves a little tail behind it (hence the sperm comment). I've not noticed the backwards 'C' but I do get more light sensitive then usual. These are my usual migrains. I had one last week that took me out of commision for the whole week. This one didn't have an aura with it, it just smacked the hell out of me. Because it struck so suddenly they (being doctors) thought I might have had a seizure (ala sambwiches friend) or a tumor might have formed and started effecting me, or spinal menegitius(sp) jumped on me. I was given morphin (to little effect) and some other things, a CAT scan, and a spinal tap. Needless to say, I had a long and interesting hospital visit. The migrain didn't leave for several days, so when I got home I was laid up in bed for about 3 more days doing nothing but sleeping. The only symptoms I had were: very light/sound/touch senesitive, slurred speach, loss of some feeling in right leg, stiff neck(like I had to pop it and couldn't), and pain enduced vomiting. All the symptoms have gone, spoke with a neurologist and she confirmed that I do have a brain(CAT proved it) and that I'm not dying of anything.
barnzenen, Mar 28 2003

       Oh, and squeak, I agree, I think that about 80% of people who *say* they have a migrain don't really have one. Over dramaticism runs deeply in the human condition.
barnzenen, Mar 28 2003

       I'm not sure why, but since posting this idea and reading about everyone else's differing aura descriptions, mine have suddenly become more varied in certain ways. This morning I had one that I swear had some coloring to it for a while, even though I'd never had colored ones before.
XSarenkaX, Mar 31 2003

       can you have a migraine without the visual disturbances? I have found that my own infrequent, severe, nauseous headaches are usually cured with a large wedge of cheese and a couple of aspirin / cheese is often cited as the culprit in causing a migraine. ????
po, Mar 31 2003

       [Dim] dim by name and dim by nature :)   

       I was saying that I actually eat what is more usually condemned to be the culprit to CURE my headache.   

       as one of the 20%, I didn't want to be accused of just having a hang-over.   

       sorry, dimmy, sweetie.
po, Mar 31 2003

waugsqueke, Mar 31 2003

       [Dim] here have a sugar lump. they are gold dust these days...
po, Mar 31 2003

       Great bolshy yarblockos to you!
waugsqueke, Mar 31 2003

       I just recently was diagnosed with Migraine with Aura, and created a picture of how it looks to me. Here's a link to it (hope it works). http://www.pbase.com/image/18772316.jpg Jim
Hasstedt, Jul 07 2003

       [mrburns] funny you should mention monitors. Mine have become much more frequent since I changed jobs. I now sit in front of a computer all day (don't know how to check the..erm what was it? Refresh rate though).   

       I put [Hasstedt]'s link up properly. This is almost the same as mine but on the other side. Mine is more colourful too.
squeak, Jul 08 2003

       Nice job on the imagery, [Hasstedt].
Thanks for putting that link up properly, [squeak].
XSarenkaX, Jul 08 2003

       You're welcome. I hope the webmaster doesn't mind serious stuff on this web site too - I didn't realize the whimsical nature of it until I signed up to make that post.
Hasstedt, Jul 08 2003

       all i can say is THANK YOU. i thought i was losing my mind. about two months ago i was driving back to work from my lunch break, and thought i looked at the sun or something, i was seeing spots and they weren't going away. i was having trouble focusing on the road. i got back to work, and looked at myself in the mirror. i felt like i was suddenly tripping on acid or something. i went into my office and said "um, guys, i don't know how to explain this but i am seeing spots, my vision, is blurry and i can't seem to focus, can someone take me home?" on my way outside, the 'spots' became larger and larger and moved out to the parameters of my vision, and then i lost peripheral (sp) vision. i simply could not see out of the corner of my eyes! i went home, actually had a cold at the time, and just got new glasses, called the doctor, and sat in the dark. then an hour later it happened again, so i analyzed it this time. it started out like a small flash, i describe it now as looking like a 'water mark', a circle that grew larger and larger, moved out to the visual parameters, a loss of peripheral vision, and then i noticed a headache. well, i was worried i was having a stroke and that just made me more anxious. the doctor said at the time it might be a migraine. so i waited. two months later, i had another one. it was at work and let me tell you, i cannot function when it happens. mine last for approximately 15 minutes so far. and the headache afterwards lasted a few hours this time. at the moment i am pretty stressed at work, i work on the computer all day for about two years, i am on the pill, smoke and drink occasionally, your average not so healthy but always trying to be girl in her twenties. and i just want to say thank you for putting my mind at ease, although i am still worried about having a stroke, when i read this page i was like, 'at least i am not the only one with these strange visual experiences!'
mkstar, Jul 17 2003

       [mkstar]: I am glad my humble post may have helped put your mind a little bit at ease regarding what could be wrong with you. Like you, I knew nothing about these visual occurrences and their relationship with migraines until I was baffled by my own recurring experiences. Coming across [Hasstedt]'s rendition of the visual aura before I started having them would have helped me identify the problem earlier, before freaking out about brain tumors or strokes or whatnot.   

       One more thing: please try to quit smoking, dear, especially if you're on birth control pills. Your risk of serious health problems is greatly increased by this combo. Read your Pill papers.
XSarenkaX, Jul 17 2003

       It's interesting to note, mkstar, that your aura coincided with your getting new glasses, since mine did to. They slowly subsided and went away as my eye's adjusted to my new lens prescription. Then my latest episodes were triggered by a new pc monitor, which are also subsiding in frequency. I can only conclude that, at least for some of us, migraine auras are caused by eye strain or adjustment. I also am a bit disappointed that my opthamologist didn't seem to have a clue about migraine auras, even though I described it the same way back then as I did to my regular doctor recently who knew exactly what it was.
Hasstedt, Jul 23 2003

       I hope "annotate" means post. Anyways, I wanted to join in whining :) I have the visual aura but not the headaches. It started more or less at the same time with a chronic neck pain about a year ago. I am a regular computer starer, so I have the back and neck problems. I think when my neck is better the aura happans less frequent. I am still observing.   

       My aura is not point-like though. It devides my sight into two, horizontally. And the lower bit (it is not half-half when it starts, the lower part is smaller) gives me a "shaking image". As if you are looking over the flames and see a transparent layer between you and the world that "shakes".   

       It grows into the crescent blur/gray-out and I feel a transparent (no colors) zigzag towards the end.   

       Ophtalmologist said nothing wrong with the eyes, neurologist said it it happens about once a week, we should supress it with medication but she could not explain what would it harm if we didn't.   

       Sorry for long description :) I will also send a graphic illsutration later.
muleksis, Jul 24 2003

       Glad iam not having some weird flash back to my experimental youthful days !!   

       Started with black dot and then the zigzag lines - very freaky - have yet to lie back and enjoy the experience!! However - do not get any headaches (yet ??) !!
joxmas, Jul 29 2003

       Please help...I surfed here while seeking infor re Occular Migraines and I have a question it seems some here might be able to shed light on...   

       While I've suffered from common migraines (w/headache and no aura for almost 20 years) I experienced my first Occular Migraine about a month ago, two weeks ago I started having episodes several times daily, always with no associated headache...   

       For going on two weeks now I've experienced on average 2-3 per day, never less than at least one in a 24 hour period, usually more, and they seem to be slowly increasing in length of duration from an initial 20 minutes to now 30-40...   

       I've found some boards and links re this disorder but rarely have I run across anyone who seems to experience them as often as I do...   

       They're all full-blown textbook examples, very vivid, colorful and mirage-like shimmering... since this began I've also experienced (not during attacks) an increasing sense of something being "off" visually, an avoidance of bright lights or intense color/graphics as well as black and white print appearing just "too vivid" and to look at for long...   

       has anyone else experienced this frequency of episodes, and/or the other mentioned symptoms between attacks???   

       I'm aware of triggers, and have an upcoming Drs appointment scheduled...   

       can anyone relate at all?...thanks So much!!!
tali, Aug 19 2003

       Well, I can relate to the increasing intolerance of black-and-white print and just a general discomfort of the lighting around me most of the time, especially in the fluorescently-lit offices and in bright sunlight. There were times when I've had more than one visual aura in a single day, but not as regularly as you are having.   

       I just had another visit with my neurologist yesterday morning and when I told her how uncomfortable my eyes feel most of the time, she suggested I invest in some high-quality sunglasses. I've never paid more than $20 for any sunglasses I've ever owned, and also don't do a good job of preventing them from becoming scratched as well. I have looked online at Sunglass Hut's website (linky) and checked out their detailed information about their products. I will post a note again if I notice any change after getting a pair and wearing them a few months. Hope your doctor helps you.
XSarenkaX, Aug 22 2003

       Great site! I haven't read every post so forgive me if I'm being repetitive. I suffer from visual aura migraine which precedes a dull, throbbing headache. My visual disturbance is what I call "swimming vision" that hangs out in my peripheral vision. Whatever I'm viewing starts to ripple with wavy lines running through, like casting a stone into the water. It lasts 20 minutes, then disappears and I'm left with a dull throb in my temples. It's scary, especially when I'm driving and otherwise disrupts whatever I'm doing. When I first sense it coming on, I usually grab a cup of coffee and Tylenol which seems to work best for me. Tylenol is acetaminophen. Ibuprofen sometimes works, too (Advil). Gel tablets are the fastest acting. It doesn't keep it from happening, but the combo of the caffeine with the drug helps the intensity. I can't take caffeine in pill form, like Excedrin Migraine, which makes me gittery.   

       I work for a doctor who did a migraine study 2 years ago. Triggers can be certain foods or by a shift in hormone activity. That can include puberty, menstruation or menopause. And yes, birth control pills are a trigger. I first got my migraines at 14. I'm 41 now. When I'm pre-menstrual, I get the full blown headache pain, with no visual distrubance. In these cases, Motrin or Aleve work the best. Obviously, men don't menstruate! But they can also experience shift in hormone activity (called "andropause" later in life). Now that I think of it, I wonder what the ratio is of migraine sufferers, men to women. Would be interesting to know. There are also genetic markers, you can inherit it.   

       My mother, who is 70 now, experiences frightening episodes of bright flashing lights and loss of concentration. She sometimes has trouble comprehending a conversation and can't speak clearly. It lasts from 20-60 minutes. Luckily, it's not alzheimers. She was diagnosed years ago with migraine with aura and it was then when we found out all the bizarre migraine occurences. Neuro disruption, temporary blindness (mentioned here), distorted vision, colors etc. She's been able to lessen the frequency of these episodes by watching what she eats. Nothing fermented, no cheese, alcohol, pickles, soy sauce, vinegar. No chocolate or caffeine. She recently had an episode after eating jalapeno crackers which she later found out were processed by pickling. It's quite a daunting challenge to pinpoint what brings them on! I find it interesting that caffeine is a trigger, yet can be helpful during an episode. As someone here found eating cheese was helpful during an episode.   

       I'm mostly concerned about my mom, because, of course, she's my mommy and getting up in age. And would like to find something more useful for her that won't screw around with her liver, heart, etc. as many prescription medications do.
moonwisp, Oct 11 2003

       I drew these pictures after seeing an aura last night that lasted for about 20 minutes.   



       I frequently see the aura and have since about age 14, but I never get the headaches.
dcook, Oct 18 2003

       The most interesting headaches I get usually are triggered by extreme physical activity coupled with dehydration. And I don't know why but these lead to a dazzling display of what looks like blue and gold fireflies and the shadows of a fan spinning. This has only happened like 3 times. Any one know why this is caused?
thelambs, Oct 18 2003

       [humanzee]: Numbness and/or tingling can be a symptom of migraine. I remember one time my arms went numb, even though I was resting them on my stomach while I was reclining in my car. I know a woman who gets paralysis in her face and has trouble thinking and talking due to migraines. Not everyone gets it, but it has been attributed to migraines.   

       Check the "Symptoms..." link I posted to see what else migraines are like.
XSarenkaX, Oct 21 2003

       I took a photo into Photoshop and did some cutting and pasting and a bit of typing to try to make a little bit more accurate sequence of what I see when I experience one of these 'expanding scintillating scotomas'.   

       Here's the link: http://members.cox.net/dcook7/aura_sequence_photo.jpg
dcook, Oct 24 2003

       [thelambs]- Well, I am prone to getting my migraines after dance class or performing. Physical stress can be a trigger. However, if you don't have a history of migraines, that could just be dehydration. Drink more water!   

       My aura is best described as someone taking a handful of glitter and throwing it into the air. A lot of small sparkly things that fly around. Incedentally, My migraines were headache-less for a few years after they started. It was just the aura and the nausea.   

       On topic, a good catch-all for knowing what aura is like would be to paint your telly screen with glitter nail polish and then watch Yellow Submarine. You'll get a bit of everyone's aura, and some acid too!
Malakh, Oct 24 2003

       What a relief to find so many others suffer Migraine with Visual Aura! One trigger for me is intense noise. A high pitched whistle from a CRT does it for me (tests my hearing too!). Loud constant pitch machinery works too sometimes. Does anyone know if there are any long term effects? (Nov 7 03)
Deave, Nov 07 2003

       [drcook]: Your illustrations are great. They are pretty accurate representations of what I see during my own auras. If you do any more illustrations, please be sure to put your URLs into the links directly under the idea above. ([Mr Burns] and I have already posted the three you've done there for you.) Thanks for sharing.
XSarenkaX, Nov 07 2003

       [XSarenkaX] Re the various posts regarding birth control pills. My Wife also suffered from migranes often around the menstrual time. After quitting birth control pills they stopped completely and have never returned. My inability to help her during these attacks was the source of huge frustration and sometimes unhelpful panic!   

       When you close your eyes do you still see the visions - and when you open them are the visions overlaid on top of your normal view of the world?
dobtabulous, Nov 07 2003

       When you close your eyes do you still see the visions - and when you open them are the visions overlaid on top of your normal view of the world?   

       [dobtabulous]: I noticed that I still do see the aura when I close my eyes, although, it is somewhat less bothersome...probably because I am not trying to see anything around or behind it.   

       Yes, the auras appear overlaid on top of my normal view, but they are similar to a normal reaction to being temporarily blinded by a glare, or a camera flash. When this happens to people, they see a bright blind spot for a few minutes. When auras occur, it's like a blind spot, but with the crazy movement of the classic ziz-zagged c-shape thingy. This makes it hard to see and is also distracting and uncomfortable for me.
XSarenkaX, Nov 07 2003

       I have had migraines on and off for 30 years but very sporadic.However I am now in my 40's and have had over 40 migraines this year that have only had the aura and a dull headache due to really fast taking of medication as soon as wigglies appear. They have taken over my life as I never know when they will come so I have to carry meds wherever I go. I am too scared not to take meds in case I get "the works".I have wiggly,furry caterpillars that are very bright and then turn into blotches that almost blind me until meds work.Have tried preventatives but all have side effects.Does anyone else have similar experiences?
pen, Nov 11 2003

       I like the idea, in the name of improving understanding and empathy between people. Could the same person then go on and invent 'menstrual cramp simulator' for those men who think we're just making a big old fuss?? (I might go on and post this in health:menstruation, but not if everyone's going to hate it. Comments please.)
Bethany, Nov 11 2003

       Push in (lightly) on your eyeballs or squeeze your eyes shut tightly until you see the flashing swirling colors, that's usually what mine look like.   

       Mr Burns   

       i see a yellow contrasted by black
FeelinPhine, Nov 11 2003

       I am so glad that I found this page! I have been to many different doctors who told me different things - some saying that I get migraines and some saying I have tension headaches. The thing is, is that I don't always get the headache when I am seeing or not seeing the weird stuff. After looking at the pictures of what some of you have seen, I was shocked. It is exactly what I see - I find it incredibly hard to explain it to others who haven't experienced it - the first time I told my mom, I think she was ready to take me in to check for tumors. I started getting these things in middle school, but never thought anything of it. But lately they have been showing up a lot more, but only in the fall - so strange. I haven't figured out the trigger as of yet, but I am working on it.   

       The stuff I see is hard to explain - like I said earlier - it is shimmery, and starts out as a dot and becomes larger. But it isn't always in a C shape - sometimes it is a zig-zag. At any rate, it is very disturbing, and usually makes me feel dizzy and disconnected - just weird. There is nothing that I can do to make them stop, just rest - and they will last as long as they want. Also, I lose peripheral vision - making it almost impossible to really 'see' anything. It is almost as if parts of things are missing, or I can't really put them together...I hope I can figure out a way to lessen the effects of these, I get at least one per week and they put me right in bed - with the headache and all...I have had to miss work because of these. If anyone has any suggestions on how to find the triggers or what not, please let me know! Thank you!
LisaN, Nov 13 2003

       Early tests for me confirmed my worst fears .... chocolate seems to be the main culprit for triggering my migraine with visual aura (MwVA) especially Cadbury's Dairy Milk. A real issue on the run up to Christmas! Does anyone else suffer from this trigger? I assume it's the additives....
DaveJ, Dec 18 2003

       [XSarenkaX] I'm not a doctor (well, not of the medical variety), but I understood that you need to be careful if you're on the Pill and you start getting migraines, or they get worse. There are suggestions that being on the Pill can put you at higher risk of a stroke and various other things. One of my friends had to stop taking it recently for this reason. I'm sure you've discussed this with your doctor - in which case, feel free to delete this anno - but if not, it might be worth thinking about.
hazel, Dec 18 2003

       I am with you on the precautions, but when the Pill helps keep other issues at bay, like monthly headaches and other symptoms, it's tough to decide on which medical issues to keep and which ones to toss aside. I am considering asking my doctor about Seasonale (link) to help reduce the monthly issues, but worry about a possible increase in migraines.
XSarenkaX, Dec 18 2003

       I had 2 auras in the past 2 days, after not having any for maybe 5 or 6 years, when I only had 3 at that time. Now am paranoid of getting them all the time. I had been dizzy so bad the past 4 days before these, this time ( couldnt go out at all ) only could lay down and was still dizzy, thought and prob do have a sinus infection, was put on antibiotics, the dizzy wasnt so bad for 2 days and boom get these 2 auras..hhmmm
cather, Dec 21 2003

       Six year experince with non-headache "scintillating scotoma" which start as a small LEFT field 'c' and grows to full LEFT field 'C' plus a few scintillating dots as if the C will someday be an "O." The LEFT C is visible with both eyes open or either one by itself. Then the phenomenon switches to the RIGHT as a backwards C visible again with both eyes open or either eye by itself. The whole visual disturbance lasts about 20 minutes and occurs every 1-4 months with no known trigger. I usually ignore it all, at least until today when I had two episodes that worried me enough to search the internet. But after reading your comments, I guess at 61 I'm still okay though I don't look forward to the pain if all these are the preceeding aura!!
gramzee, Jan 17 2004

       [DaveJ] I think it might be the theobromine in chocolate which is the trigger for some people. This is found in the cocoa beans so isn't an additive. It stimulates the nervous system and heart rate and can affect emotional moods - it's a natural antidepressant - and is a mild diuretic. It's also the component that makes chocolate poisonous for cats and dogs.   

       Coffee also contains small amounts of caffeine and phenylethylamine which can affect mood and blood pressure so may also be a trigger.
hazel, Jan 17 2004

       A coworker friend of mine used to get migraines until she had LASIK (laser vision correction eye surgery) done. It's been a record 3 weeks since the surgery and since her last migraine attack. Could there be a connection? I wonder if there are any studies being done on a possible correlation between the two.
XSarenkaX, Jan 26 2004

       I am 23 and have full blown migraines with aura, blindness, difficulty speaking, vomiting, and numbness in my extremities and face (1-10 per year). It makes me cringe just to read these postings! BUT, I have found that mine are greatly influenced by irregular sleep patterns and dehydration. Try drinking a full glass of water every night before bed. This routine has limited my migraines to ~1 per year. I'd encourage anyone to try it, especially if prescription medications have failed for you.
swedepotato, Jan 28 2004

       Update: That coworker informed me that she had a migraine earlier this week, but instead of the usual one- or two-WEEKs long, this one lasted only two DAYS. She also noted that it was much more severe than before as well.   

       It could all be coincidence, or mental, or perhaps there is some corrolation between LASIK & migraines (for some people).
XSarenkaX, Feb 06 2004

       I used to get migraines with aura while I was going through puberty. I'm 28 now, and haven't had one in about 10 years. As they'd begin, they seemed like mild tension headaches with pressure behind my eyes. The changeover from mild pressure and aching to severe, extremely light- and sound- sensitive pain would happen very quickly.   

       The aura was usually full-field, much like looking through a kaliedoscopic rainbow photo filter, with lots of colorful flashing triangles completely filling my view. They were large at the periphery of my vision, spiralling down and getting smaller and denser toward the center of my vision, much like the seeds on a sunflower. Even though the pattern was full-field, I could still see through it. Any high-contrast light (it didn't have to be bright) would set off sharp pain and aggravate the flickering in that portion of my field of vision, in a fashion similar to a photostrobe, in that the disturbance was fixed on my field of vision after the fact.   

       These events would typically last two or three hours, going completely away all at once (where'd the pain go? I can see again!) During the event, doing anything other than lying still in a completely darkened room in near silence (the gurgle of water in the heating pipes was enough to cause excruciating pain) was unbearable.
Freefall, Feb 27 2004

       I never had anything like this happen until today. I was walking to Borders on my lunch hour and thought I noticed water on my sunglasses. There was a blurry, prismatic area right below the center of my vision. I took off the shades and noticed that there was still a rounded blurry area in my vision and I thought "Damn! an eye floater". I closed one eye and then the other to see which eye had the floater and noticed that the "floater" was present no matter which eye I was looking through. Though the shape was a little to the left and south of my center of vision it was disorienting as the blurriness at center was ringed with prismatic ever-shifting rainbow stripes. There were more colors and more activity at the bottom part of the circle (which was really kind of amorphous - not a complete circle). I realized that I was having trouble seeing where I was was going and I was really frightened that I was having a brain anyeurism or a stroke. I have added a link to the best attempt I could make at animating this phenomenon. http://www.grislyremains.com/images/aura.gif The aura lasted about 15 minutes and then disappeared. I haven't experienced any headache pain but I did notice tingling in one arm right after the incident.
artamnesia, Jun 23 2004

       Not bad, [artamnesia]. Thanks for sharing your experiences with us. Hopefully we can help others who experience this weird phenomenon seek the proper help, as well as educate those who don't know anything about migraines/auras.
XSarenkaX, Jun 28 2004

       My opthomologist assured me that my auras were migraines even though I didn't get the pain. They are of the herringbone / zigzag pattern and are always colored. They are quite pretty and entertaining except for the fact that they are also annoying and interfere with my vision for the time they are "on". I have never had the pain but I have felt a little tired and sometimes nasueous after the show is over.
hoho223, Jul 12 2004

       It was awesome to come across this web site three days after having seen a neurologist and been told I was having migraine with aura. It may sound weird but I was relieved as I was expecting the worst....that it would have been something more serious. I had a difficult time describing my "visual disturbances" to the Dr. but as I did he totally understood and was quite definate this is what it was. Reading your comments I am like "yeah, that's what I see, it is like a keiladiscope (spelling?) and there is a hole in my vision in one eye (first time lt eye, second time rt eye) it was like I had to look around to see things...weird!!! I got a headache after both episodes, and both "disturbances lasted appx 20-25 minutes. Both ended with losing peripheral vision momentarily then it was over and the headache came and went. it was nice to know that others have experienced the same things (you know what I mean!). it puts me out of commission for about an hour or so but completely goes away. My first one was July 21st and the second was six days later....none since but a few times a day it FEELS as though it is going to occur but doesn't, does anyone else have these "sensations"?
dmm, Aug 14 2004

       [dmm]: I can relate to feeling like an aura is just around the corner, but doesn't happen...at least when I first expected it. I remember telling one of my coworkers, a fellow migraineur, about having had that feeling for the third time in one workday, but not getting the visual aura. It just kind of hovered, making me think about it. I ended up finally having it after the third one that day, right after talking about it.   

       Mine have been happening a little less often lately, and I wonder if it's my being able to sense an oncoming aura. When I sense one coming on, I make myself get up, walk around the office, and not look at the computer for at least 5 minutes. I'm still on preventative drugs, too, so they may be kicking in now. Who knows?
XSarenkaX, Aug 17 2004

       i've had migraine with aura for a long time now i think (undiagnosed for a long time). mine start out with a couple of 'floaters' in my field of vision that are twitching. by twitching, i mean the just jiggle about like they are vibrating. maybe 3-4 small floaters. then they slowly increase in numbers in the peripheral and get to the point there are so many ,it turns into tunnel vision. then, i get blind spots in the center of my field of vision in addition to the tunnel vision, making it hard to see anything. i also get numbness, tingling, slight paralisys in my arms/hands, slightly slurred speach, inability to concentrate, mild nausea.   

       this lasts about 45 minutes and a headache comes on. the headache is a dull aching headache.   

       most recently, i had a migraine that came on and after about 3 hours, it started over! a doule whammy. i never had that before. and the worst of it was i got double vision during my aura, which never happened. that day was miserable.   

       anybody else ever have a one-night stand with a double-whammy aura like that? i've had them 10+ years, but this is the first time i've had them 2 in a row. always, i have at least a few days between episodes, usually several weeks.
vader1000, Oct 06 2004

       Hey, the HB is back online!! Celebrate with a happy dance! :)   

       Anyway, yeah, once I had two auras, both about 30 minutes each, one right after the god-damned other. I was pissed. Another time I had 3 auras in one day, with headaches mingled in there somewhere, as I recall. Mine are very unpredictable.   

       I actually had a rare occurrence happen to me today: I had an aura followed immediately by a migraine headache. My Rx seems to be working on it now, as it's feeling better now, but it's rare that I get the aura and headache in sequence, like they're "supposed" to do.
XSarenkaX, Oct 06 2004

       Migraine Aura Foundation (http://www.migraine-aura.org/) is a a non-profit organization running a new website, one of its most important goals being to provide material that helps patients to recognize and understand their neurological symptoms during migraine. One section of the webpage deals with Migraine Art, providing numerous examples of pictorial representations of visual migraine aura symptoms (http://www.migraine-aura.org/EN/Migraine_Art.html). Readers are encouraged to submit illustrations and descriptions of their own migraine aura experiences to Dr Klaus Podoll, a migraine researcher working at the University Clinic Aachen in Germany. A single webpage is devoted to Jim C. Hasstedt’s illustration „My Migraine Aura“ from this halfbakery website, a webpage featuring David A. Cook's images is in preparation, and we would also like to present artamnesia’s beautiful painting [http://www.grislyremains.com/images/aura.gif] on the Migraine Art website, but unfortunately we were not able to contact her ... maybe she will give a feedback?!
Klaus Podoll, Oct 06 2004

       Hi Everyone, Im glad i found this website. I hope im posting in the right spot..I started getting ocular migranes when i was 11 I am now 40. they are very very scary. When i was younger i would lose my vision for 40 minutes and then i would regain my site and then i would have the worst headache imaginable for another 40 minutes..out of nowhere i stopped having them around 13. and then they started up again in my twenties maybe once a year. from 30-40 i usually get them monthly. And lately i have been getting them daily minus the headache. i have gotten them in the worst situations.. on a first date,while driving and stuck in traffic,on a job interview,while bartending(and i was responsible for the entire place)what a nightmare. "On stage while giving a speech" I have lost jobs over this because people don't understand and assume im on drugs or something. I lost a boyfriend over it. he didn't understand what i meant when i said i couldn't see.It has been really tough living with this and im so glad i found people on here that experience the same thing. I live on tylenol daily and try to prevent them but im afraid im going to kill my liver..i am up to 8 tylenols a day.. I went to a nerologist years ago and had cats scans etc.. dr put me on nerotin seizure medication but i was afraid to take it. i feel like a disabled person. im just trying to learn how to live with it still!
fxlisamarie, Oct 16 2004

       [fxlisamarie]: My neurologist recently gave me Neurontin to try, too, and I am taking it every night before bed. It seems to be the one thing that is making a difference, as I have not had very many auras or headaches since I started taking them. Why are you afraid to take Neurontin? I'd be afraid to take 8 Tylenols a day like you're doing now!
XSarenkaX, Nov 16 2004

       is there actually a aura simulator. i want to show my husband. i have auras every few months its very scary.
tara, Dec 30 2004

       Just wondering if anyone still gets on this site?
Annette, Feb 06 2005

       Of course we do! Have you something to say? Don't be shy...
XSarenkaX, Feb 09 2005

       I think if someone could animate it, it could make a pretty good screensaver, kerching! I'm sorry bout your migraines, though.
froglet, Feb 09 2005

       Can you have a migraine without a headache? I have had three episodes of light sensitivity with wavy lines in my peripheral vision. The lines look like a ceiling fan in peripheral vision. Like a screw turning, sort of. There are no colors, but it seems way too bright and although that makes it more difficult to see, I lose no vision. I don't have a headache after, though. I just wondered if anyone knew if this was a migraine? I have no other symptoms.
steen719, Feb 14 2005

       i haven't read most of the comments, but any idea that makes health care more patient-involved is a good idea. the more familiar a person is with what they have, and how it affects others, the better they are. and we all know how much our discomfort is really in our heads.
changokun, Mar 10 2005

       Status Update: I have been doing well with the Neurontin as a preventative and so my doctor and I agreed that I should try to wean myself off of it. I am now off Neurontin completely for about a month with promising results.   

       I've also been contacted by a doctor (Klaus Podoll MD) with an organized website dedicated to migraine auras, complete with various artwork about and inspired by the phenomenon. (See link.)
XSarenkaX, Aug 15 2005

       I just realized I hadn't updated you all on my condition. There is good news! My neurologist and I can only conclude that the Neurontin must have helped something. Since I started taking it daily in November of '04, my migraines and auras have drastically been reduced. In June of '05, she and I agreed to take me off the stuff. I have been off daily meds for migraines now since then and am still doing well. During my last visit to see the doc in November of '05, she concluded that I only need to see her on an as-needed basis, instead of every few months. I told her I felt like I'd graduated. :)   

       Anyway, I wonder if anything else I'd been doing may have affected my personal success. At any rate, I'm glad I'm not being bothered by the bizarre occurrences as much any more.
XSarenkaX, Jan 03 2006

       glad to hear you are better.   

       i inherited the condition from my mum. i always have a period of visuals at the begining that i describe to people as the Millenium Falcon hyperspace jump, but it is much, much better than that, the light sparks are so incredibly white and the pattern is structured like tunnelvision yet also randomn. like [bristolz] i would really enjoy it if it wasn't followed by the sickening.   

       both my mum and i found diet helps. she has reduced the frequency of her attacks by avoiding cheese and chocolate. i found even better success by detoxing and eating vegan (i think - could be coincidence). i have them rarely now but can make one happen almost on cue by ingesting 10 marlboro redtops and three pints of strong, hoppy ale before bedtime.
rainbow, Jan 04 2006

       I'm very late joining this discussion, now July 2006. I experienced my first migraine aura yesterday and was terrified. I have suffered from migraine for years and never had aura. I rushed to the eye doctor and he said many people as they age develop the aura. So I'm getting old and now know what it is to see the aura.   

       My experience lasted all day, however. Or perhaps it was a matter of frequent occurrences throughout the day. It seemed to be constant though. I also found that it was in only one eye. If I shut my right eye, my vision was clear. When it first began though I could see it from both eyes, I think.   

       It was like suddenly seeing a huge smear of iodine over my field of vision, deep amber red, like the mother of all floaters. It behaved like a floater, but my floaters are all gray or silver in color tone and much less noticeable. At the doctor's office, it had diffused and become thinner, also my field of vision was like looking through a veil of tiny bubbles.   

       Later in the day I had a C or Gaelic E framing the left side of my field of vision, still amber in color, a lighter amber than the dark reddish color of the morning. That huge deep color was terribly dramatic when it began, and I was terrified. I thought I had a torn retina.   

       Today I briefly experienced a dark black sort of slash in my field of vision. I have also had flashes of light around the right perimeter of my visual field when in a darkened room, all day long.   

       That's my experience. It is similar to many reports I have read here, but also a little different. My doctor said everyone experiences this differently.   

       Has anyone else experienced the aura for a 12 hour period? In only one eye? Thanks.   

appreciator, Jul 12 2006

       ouch. sorry to hear that. hope you feel better today!
po, Jul 12 2006

       The first time I ever had a migraine aura was when I was in my twenties. I was playing on a softball league and we had been practicing long and hard that day. Then, all of a sudden, I couldn't focus. And, I was behind the plate! Needless to say, I had to take a break. I went years after that before I had another one. I was sitting at a break table at work and I didn't know what was happening to me. I couldn't focus, but I began seeing blue and yellow zigzags in my view. Well, this scared me. All I could think of was retina displacement. I went to the eye doctor and he checked my eyes out. That was a visit for nothing. He told me I was having migraine auras and I would have to see another doctor. I went straight to a clinic and the doctor there gave me a shot of Imitrex. It was like a miracle worker. My headache left almost immediately. Last week, I had back surgery. I am now in my fifties. And, twice since then, I have had auras, but accompanied with no headaches. I thought this was very strange, but as I have read here and elsewhere, many others experience this as well. I have them in both eyes. It starts quickly. It is as if someone has dropped a large rock in my vision. And it is a rippling effect. Then, on the outside of my vision, I start seeing zigzags of blue and yellow. After about 15 minutes or so, they are gone. No headache. It is always in both eyes, never just one. I have enjoyed reading about other's experiences here. I will be telling my doctor today when I go for my one-week checkup. However, now, I am not too concerned because it looks as if many others have the same problem. Thanks for the info here, :-).
flowerchildfromthepast, Jul 19 2006

       I am female and get the "cluster" migraines. Cluster headaches are rare in females, more common in males. The first sign that I am getting one is a sharp pain over my left eye. I get a sudden feeling of congestion and the left side of my face sorta droops. My eyes look like I've been out all night. The pain is crushing and squeezing my forehead helps. The visual aura I get (as creative as I can describe) is the same as the reflection of water on a wall or ceiling. They sometimes look like invisible fans, swirlling from one side of my vision and then gradually fading off or out of the center of my vision. The odd thing is that when you close your eyes, the swirlling is still there. A quad dose of goodies powders helps, if caught in time. Not good for the stomach.... But helps the pain. Been on Topamax now for a year, and the migraines have slowed down. Maybe have a site that you can click on to breifly feel the pain that us migrainers get would help those that think that they are not real. I know a few people that I would like to try that out, maybe get their computer to lock up on it.... Ouch
smarable, Jul 21 2006

       [smarable] and other sufferers. There was BBC radio 4 programme recently focussing on cluster headaches. See link. You have my sympathy - my partner gets bad headaches just about every day (I think I'm the cause)
xenzag, Jul 21 2006

       actually someone posted just the same idea about a year ago, the only difference from our XsarenkaX here being that he also impemented a java simulation with graphics and sound and gave the bakery a link. "[marked-for-deletion]", they said. I clicked the link and got a headache defying all logic. So bad a headache now I've instinctively headed my mouse towards the [-] for this idea, because it almost has the same name.   

       But no, it's just a suggestion and as harmless as a text description can be.
sweet, Oct 24 2006

       I don't know if anybody comes on here anymore, but here goes... I'm only 14 years old and I've been having migraines with aura for three years. I only found out what was happening yesterday when I went to the doctor.   

       I always thought that the skull crushing headaches were a side effect of the visual disturbances. And it was so hard to explain to my parents what was happening. My mom always thought that it was just low blood sugar. And my dad thought I was exagurating.   

       My Aura is just a big blurry splotch in the middle of my vision. And then it moves to the side. It doesn't seem so bad compared to what some of you get. But it was still scary not knowing what was going on. And nobody taking me seriously.
gotvicky, Oct 25 2006

       [sweet]: "actually someone posted just the same idea about a year ago"   

       Check the date on my post - it's over 3 years old. I don't know of another idea that has been posted. If so, please provide a link.   

       Also, I beg that this post not be deleted, as I have received probably a hundred emails from people who accidentally find a description of their auras and thank me for giving them a hint as to what it is. I wish I'd found something this descriptive back when I didn't know what was wrong with "my vision". I would hate to have this resource and launching point to further information taken away from people who need it.
XSarenkaX, Oct 30 2006

       Anyone seen the movie Predator? That's what my aura looks like, before the Predator shows himself, he's a blury moving visual thing going on...thats toward the end of my episode in the beginning the first sign is the zip zag flasher. I'm having a migraine today, which is what brought me here. Today it seems the migrane hit on the speach side of my brain. I knew what I wanted to say but could night produce the words, much like a stroke. These are rare, only maybe 2% of my migranes are like this. I always have an aura, then a numbness runs through my body starting in the back of my nose and running down my throat and then into my arm. Then the headache comes, as I have gotten older the headache part is not nearly as bad. Camera flashes and bright light are definate triggers, but I think alot comes from hormone levels as mine are always extemly high, which is odd since I had a hysterectomy in 6 years ago, which seemed to reduce my migranes for awhile. Loosing the speach was quite freaky though, just wondering if anyone else out there has this symptom?
ddsquared64, Feb 28 2007

       I've read through about 1/2 of the annos and strongly feel I need to comment as I must sleep soon (will read more tomorrow).   

       When I was in my late teens, early twenties, I suffered blindingly debilitating horrific headaches with many of the symptoms listed above.   

       Intense physical pain of my head, vision problems, loss of sleep because of it and intense dysfunction in my personal life.   

       The solution that came to me by serendipity was that someone suggested I see a chiropracter.   

       I'm not going to say I know this is a solution, but it was something that worked for me.   

       Apparently, according to "them", a slip on a snowy hill I had a few years earlier had wedged the atlas bone in my neck and created a condition that caused this problem due to non-free transmission of neurochemicals?   

       Anyways, won't bore you further with the blah. That's my story.   

       Ten serious headaches in 20 years as opposed to daily for 5 years.   

       I feel for anyone that has this prob.
nth, Mar 01 2007

       That reminds me: I also know someone for whom acupunctures seems to have done wonders. Her migraines lasted days but she claims the treatments helped significantly. Not for me, but I thought I'd put it out there.
XSarenkaX, Mar 06 2007

       Holy cow! I get that EXACT SAME VISUAL! I also get migraines, but these two things never coincide. I get my visual disturbances in the shower or while swimming, which has always struck me as very odd, whereas, if I'm going to get a migraine, I always wake up with it. Coffee seems to help, but cigarettes start making me really nauseous, which sucks because I'm a pack-a-day smoker and, well, I'm drinking lots of coffee. Anyway, not here to whine, just to say that I sometimes see a big bright doughnut in my shower.
sqykly, Mar 07 2007

       mmm...donuts in the shower....mmmm <slobbering noises>
XSarenkaX, Mar 07 2007

       Wow, lots of us with bad heads! I get migraines, have done since I hit puberty. Blinding pain, slurred speech, photophobia, extreme fatigue, etc. But only rarely do I get the auras. The first time it happened it scared the sh*t out of me. Like Po, I find suspected triggers actually help! Caffiene often cures mine, the doc thinks it's due to its muscle relaxant capabilities. Pain pills generally don't do a thing. I'm for anything that helps explain the weird symptoms to people who don't get them. Can we make them want to crawl under the covers and die too?
esperance, Mar 08 2007

       Everyone, I was just diagnosed with Fibromyalgia on 2/28/08. It turns out that migraines can be one of the many symptoms of Fibromyalgia, so I want all you migraineurs to consider this possibility, so you can get the appropriate care.   

       Fibromyalgia is a poorly understood condition, but basically it causes pain and sensitivities of all types and intensities in many areas of the body, and screws up sleep, resulting in fatigue. There are other symptoms, like IBS (see the link) as well. People can apparently have the potential to develop Fibro, but not have symptoms until an accident, illness, or event triggers it "on". This is apparently what has happened to me.   

       I was rear-ended at a red light in 2006. I developed pains and muscle spasms and sustained a concussion as well. I was expected to heal after some time, but years when by and my symptoms not only didn't go away after all my diligent physical therapy, but the pains spread to all over, I developed IBS, and my sleep has gone to crap. There are times when everything gets worse, which is known as a flare. This can be tough to handle, especially when you "don't look sick". I'm dealing with this new condition as best as I can by learning and reading about it, and being part of an online support group.   

       I don't meant to scare all you migraineurs with this news, but I do want to keep you aware of the possibility that your migraines may be part of a bigger diagnosis. Neurologists and Rheumatologists are qualified to diagnose Fibromyalgia, but not all of them understand it. If you have questions on Fibromyalgia, please feel free to e-mail me. (Please put some indication that you're from the Halfbakery in the subject line so my spam filter doesn't delete your message.)
XSarenkaX, May 14 2008

       [XSarenkaX], I'm sorry to hear that you're having such troubles. Keep me posted, let me know if I can be of any help.   

       I don't think I will complain about my hangover, then.
normzone, May 14 2008

       I have lived with this monster since I was about 13 and I used to get panic attacks with it but I leaarned how to cope with it
javierlopez1222, May 16 2008

       I am still getting contacted by strangers who see this post. I'm so glad to be helping people realize what the auras are - they can be scary without knowing! One recently mentioned a book that quotes this post. I posted a link. :)
XSarenkaX, Aug 22 2011

       [ marked never to be deleted ] however backed it gets.   

       The website mentioned above, where sufferers can post there own representations of a migraine aura is not quite the same as this idea. The data that would need to be collected from a large sample of sufferers, needed to accurately represent a non-subjective migraine aura might shed some light on the problem. So [+].   

       the colour combinations mentioned above are; blue and yellow, or black and white, there is one specific mention of red. And several references to rain bows. Some of the contributions to the web site have red in them, would one created by XserankaX also be red even though she perceives it as being blue /yellow.   

       The phenomena is often described as moving out towards the edge of the field of vision on the side on witch it starts. This would suggest only one occipital lobe is involve. Some times it is described on both sides. And some times it sounds as if the phenomena crosses the field of vision from one side to the other. This would suggest either; the cause of the problem lies at the level of the retina / optic nerve. Or that problem is at a higher level of the visual system, above the level of detecting; lines, curves, and angles.   

       That the visual phenomena started on the opposite side to the head ache, is this common or personal to who ever it was who described it?   

       some of the thing sited as triggers can cause a rise in blood pressure, but the symptom of tunnelling of vision described by one contributor is normally associated with low blood pressure.   

       Is this all the one phenomena?   

       Sorry if I come across as a bit voyeuristic, but I had never heard of migraine auras before, and I think there is something odd / interesting here.
j paul, Aug 23 2011

       Thank you, [j paul] for your "never" mark. I do think this post has become something of significant, intangible value to many who continue to happen upon it, most with many questions about what this is all about and why it's happening to them. I'm no doctor - just a patient. I am happy to answer what I know, which basically means you get my own personal experience, and some speculations based one what I've read about others.   

       Perhaps the idea I propose should allow any and all members to join up and customize their own aura simulation, and allow the public to view/experience it and comment on it, much like this and many other social sites. I'm not sure if voting on or rating the simulation creations would be appropriate, but that's a possibility. We would be inspired by others' simulations to fine tune and create our own, personalized versions.
XSarenkaX, Aug 24 2011

       Check out XsarenkaX 's migraine aura / MaxwellBuchanan's RVR Glasses. There might be a useful link.
j paul, Aug 28 2011

       I've hardly ever get headaches but I've seen the visuals associated with migraine every minute of every day of my life as far as I can remember.
They call it visual snow [link].
I'm part of a small minority that is not debilitated by seeing this way. Others seeing the visuals 24/7 without pain would certainly 'not' pay for the experience.

       The \\spermy\\ looking squiggles are Entoptic phenomena [link] and can bee seen by most people if you stare into a clear blue sky for any length of time. It is the illumination of the white blood cells in the capillaries of your eyes by the skys' particular shade of blue.   

       The jerky/wavy line thing is, (and this is strictly my own theory), a variation of palinopsia, [link] in which the micro movements of the eyes leave stuttery after-images which are filtered out for most folks.   

       I don't have migraines, but my MS does some weird shit to my eyes. I tried to explain it to my physicians and finally came up with a way to demonstrate. I brought in a green laser pointer and an empty, plastic milk jug. By shining the laser through the plastic, it splits the beam into myriad "pixels" of light. I live in a pixelated world.
Klaatu, Feb 20 2013

       Did you have these visuals before MS [Klaatu]?
I know perception is not a common topic but I'm surprised it never came up when we met.

       [2fries] I was having some issues at that time. They have just become more pronounced as the disease has progressed. My MRI has shown *major* changes since then. The MI that I had while "car camping" certainly hasn't helped. A lot of the plaques are located in the visual cortex. I don't know if this is "typical" in MS or not. The pixelations that I experience have made driving no longer an option. My car has sat, gathering dust since March 2012 and I no longer have a license. I'm still a terror on my gimp-o- mobile, for now, but time and my disease keep marching on.
Klaatu, Feb 20 2013

       Much as a simulated acid trip, if you believe that you understand the experience without having it, you are fooling yourself.   

       As a sufferer of profound migraines thankfully without much pain, I can say that nothing else is a close comparison. Thankfully they are better than when I was young. Sound looping, light and vision disturbances, dizziness, vertigo, movement hallucination, tunnel vision, hallucinations of unpleasant flavors and smells, powerful "memory storms" of vivid experiences sometimes positive sometimes negative, vascular constrictions in the fingers toes, nose and ears, strange sensations in the extremities, lucid unpleasant dreams, weird sensations with orgasm, all with no distracting headache. A little perhaps like a minor seizure that can last for days.   

       Of all of these the light distortions and halos are pretty livable for me.   

       A rare objectionable feature is a sudden and violent causeless nausea accompanied with the hallucination of a strong bitter taste in my mouth.
WcW, Feb 20 2013

       I am sorry to hear that [Klaatu]. There are other folks on the visual snow website that attribute their visuals to ms as well. As I don't seem to have any secondary health issues I would be currious to see what a functional mri of my mind would reveal about the visual component of this condition.   

       //Of all of these the light distortions and halos are pretty livable for me.//   

       Every bright light I've ever seen looks like this [link]4   

       If the literature I read on the subject is correct then the halos around bright light sources are caused by a 'higher order aberration of the eye', [link5] and are not detected during standard eye exam. They show up on the pre-tests for lasic surgery though.   

       I realize that the symptom balance is different for different people which is why a "simulated migraine" will never really capture the experience.
WcW, Feb 21 2013

I would contribute money I really can't afford to the creation a half-assed decent simulator though. One with adjustable levels for the entire range of visual abnormalities, (don't much cotton to the word symptom), because I think that determining perception at a young age would go far towards early diagnosis of many illnesses/abilities.


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