Recognizing Aphasia During a Migraine Attack

Recognizing Aphasia During a Migraine Attack

Recognizing Aphasia During a Migraine Attack

Aphasia is a migraine symptom that affects your language. It impairs one’s ability to process language, both in written and spoken words. People with aphasia have trouble putting words together to speak or write, understanding what others are saying, and comprehending what they read. When speaking, words may come out slurred and unintelligible. Symptom severity can vary from person to person and between attacks. Aphasia is linked to migraine with aura.

Migraine with aura occurs in about 25 to 30 percent of those who experience migraine. The most common signs of aura are visual disturbances, like flashing lights, or sensory experiences, like tingling in your arm. Another, but less common aura symptom you may have is transient aphasia. During an attack, aphasia symptoms can be debilitating but your speech and language skills are only temporarily affected.

Aphasia symptoms related to migraine aura should reverse completely on their own and don’t cause any permanent damage. However, having difficulty with your speech and language skills can also be symptoms of other conditions that require immediate attention. If it’s the first time you’re having aphasia symptoms, you should visit your doctor or neurologist for a full medical history and potential tests such as an MRI or CAT scan to rule out other conditions. Keeping a migraine journal to identify triggers and patterns is always recommended.

What triggers migraines to physically occur:

  • Over-dilated blood vessels and a decrease of blood flowing to the brain
  • When the trigeminal nerve found in the brain and responsible for sensation in the face becomes irritated

Living with migraine can be unpredictable, especially if you add in aura symptoms like aphasia that can interrupt your daily life. Episodes are not usually chronic or progressive. In some cases, aphasia episodes may be the result of certain medications prescribed for the treatment of migraines with aura.

When to see a Doctor:

  • Difficulty with word recall
  • Problems with reading or writing
  • Difficulty speaking
  • Trouble understanding speech

Work with your doctor to rule out other conditions and identify a treatment plan to minimize the effect of aphasia on your daily life.

For more information on how to help treat your migraine with aphasia or for any other inquiries, please call us at (631) 364-9119.

North Suffolk Neurology is a full-service Neurology, Headache Medicine, and Sleep Medicine practice consisting of dedicated, experienced staff committed to helping our patients and their families maintain and improve their health. For all in-office appointments & inquiries, please call (631) 364-9119. You can also schedule a telehealth appointment by calling (631) 886-4571

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