Migraine is characterized by recurrent episodes of headache, whether or not combined with an aura. The headache usually has a beating character and is often localized to the side, front- and / or back of the head.
Migraine is more common in women, and there seems to be a genetic susceptibility. Also, environmental factors such as family and life (exercise, nutrition, smoking, alcohol, stress) are very important. Other symptoms include: neck pain, light- and sound sensibility, nausea, transferred veins dizziness. Symptoms may persist for a few days.
It has been shown that various foods may prompt the migraine attack. Products like: caffeine, sweeteners (Aspartame, Saccharine), monosodiumglutamaat (MSG), citrus fruits. Also, hormonal changes, stress, smoking, heavy light, weather changes, red wine, contraception and little sleep are seen as aggravating factors.
In the past, it was believed that migraine, especially a disease of the blood vessels concerned, because medication that works to vasoconstriction sometimes took away the headache, However, this did not explain the aura symptoms. They arise because of increased brain activity, after which reduces this activity within an hour. This spreading wave of brain activity was first by Leao in 1944 described and is also called cortical spreading depression (CSD) called.
Research has shown that a migraine neurovascular disorder (nervous system and circulation problem) concerns, where nerves are disturbed from the brainstem. This system (Trigemino-vasculair) thus becomes sensitive to irritation and inflammation via a mechanism different chemical messengers (Neuropeptides) release that increase the headache.
Within functional neurology we use interventions that optimize these structures in their function, to reduce migraine attacks. Een voorbeeld hiervan is de insufflatie methode van Sullivan.
This method encourages the affected system by means of a mild air pressure against the tympanic membrane. It is a painless and easily applicable method where the results so far are very promising.