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Influence of Migraine and of Migraine Aura on Balance and Mobility – A Controlled Study

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Migraine, especially migraine with aura (MA), appears to be a risk factor for ischemic lesions in the posterior fossa. The clinical relevance of the lesions is uncertain. Accordingly, herein, we identified individuals with MA, migraine without aura (MO), and without migraine (controls) in order to investigate their balance and mobility.

Participants were selected among patients seen in an outpatient headache clinic. Controls had no history of headache. Balance was assessed by measuring the oscillation area using force plates and mobility was assessed with the Timed Up and Go test.

Of 92 volunteers, 31 had MO (38 ± 10 years), 31 had MA (37 ± 8), and 30 were controls (33 ± 9). Subjects with MA had larger oscillation area (2.5 ± 1.4 cm2 and 3.7 ± 2.9 cm2) relative to those with MO (2.0 ± 1.7 cm2 and 2.1 ± 2.2 cm2, P = .02) and controls (1.5 ± 0.8 cm2 and 1.7 ± 1.2 cm2, P < .001) when standing in the bipodal position, respectively, with opened and closed eyes. MA was different with MO while standing in the unipodal position with eyes opened (right leg 6.7 ± 2.5 cm2 vs 4.9 ± 1.7 cm2, P = .002; left leg 6.5 ± 2.7 cm2 and 4.8 ± 1.4 cm2, P = .008). No differences were seen between MA and MO regarding the Timed Up and Go, although both groups were different than controls (8.5 seconds. and 6.5 seconds, P < .001; 8.2 and 6.5 seconds, P < .01, respectively). Dizziness symptoms happened in 25/31 (80%) of those with MA and 20/31 (65%) with MO, relative to 2/30 (6.5%) in controls (P < .0001 and P < .001).

Aura negatively affects static balance and mobility in individuals with migraine. Dizziness is a prevalent symptom in this population.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: July 1, 2013

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