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  1. Link the Writer

    Link the Writer Flipping Out For A Good Story. Contributor

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    Ocular Migraines -- Need some fact-checking here...

    Discussion in 'Research' started by Link the Writer, Jul 3, 2017.

    M'kay, need some fact-checking here.

    Basically, in my Colonial Mystery Amos Garnier (my MC) has ocular migraines. He's already blind, yes, but he experiences brief periods of severe pain in his right eye that lasts for half an hour and makes him dizzy and unable to really do much besides gripe about it. It happens on and off, and it usually gets triggered by certain lighting situations (he is able to distinguish between light and dark)

    Thing is, I never had ocular migraines and in addition to my research of it, I wanted to hear personal experience from anyone here who has them. What's it like? Does Amos' migraines ring as realistic or complete bull?

    Thoughts?
     
  2. Michael Pless

    Michael Pless Senior Member

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    I tend to get what I am assured is a (rare) form of migraine, similar to what you describe. Mine are triggered by a glint of sunlight off metal (for example). They are often relatively painless, any headache is usually the result of my straining to see, because my vision is interfered-with. These have been going on for well over 40 years.

    It is very difficult to explain. There is an ever-expanding "haze" where I can see nothing - not black, not white, not anything. If I move my eye (to look elsewhere) the haze of no image remains stationary, and objects are visible. The haze continues to expand and I get vision in the center of it but not around the edges. Expansion continues until I get normal vision again. As I said, they are not truly painful any more - I've learnt to relax and wait the 20 minutes or so till it's cleared by not trying to see what I can't.

    Like others I get the regular sort as well, from time to time, but I've learnt to avoid most of the triggers for me.
     
  3. ChickenFreak

    ChickenFreak Contributor Contributor

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    The following may or may not answer your question at all.

    Googling seems to tell me that ocular migraines are the visual aura that comes with some migraines. So I'd just call this "migraine with aura" or "migraine with visual aura". I have these occasionally.

    What I'm wondering is whether he would see the aura. I'm inclined to think that he could, because I think that it's produced by the brain, not by anything actually in the visual field.

    For me, these tend to start with subtly unclear vision--I have just a little trouble reading, as I might if my eyes were very tired or if my eyes were watering, but blinking doesn't clear the "swimminess" as it would for watery eyes.

    The swimminess starts as a little spot, and it slowly grows, and at some point I say, "Oh. Migraine coming," and I email my manager that he's going to see a little sick time on my time sheet. :) Then I take the Excedrin Tension headache, washed down with a Coke.

    The spot grows until it becomes a boundary, clear vision outside and clear vision inside. By the time it more or less surrounds the outer edges of my field of vision, head pain and usually nausea follow it. I usually have clear vision for the main pain and nausea part.

    When I was younger, the head pain would get worse and worse until I stopped trying not to vomit and wished that the vomiting would hurry up already! because the headache almost always went away within minutes afterward. These days, the Excedrin and Coke and lying down for a couple of hours with a face mask, propped up about thirty degrees for the nausea, usually knocks it off within one to four hours.

    The cause for my migraine with aura seems, when I can identify a cause, to most often be "stress letdown"--I've been very stressed and then there's suddenly less stress. I used to reliably get one on the first day of a vacation until I started making a point of drinking extra caffeine on that day.

    I also have extremely frequent headaches that start with nausea but not visual aura, and are also knocked down with Excedrin/Coke/face-mask/thirty-degree-lie-down, but in that case half an hour is often enough to kill them. These happen on work days and not weekends and happen less often when I hate my job less. I would just call them stress headaches if it weren't for the nausea component.
     
  4. ChickenFreak

    ChickenFreak Contributor Contributor

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    Re-reading your post: half an hour is pretty brief, and I don't know that dizziness fits.
     
  5. Wreybies

    Wreybies Thrice Retired Supporter Contributor

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    I get them all - the - time. Thankfully, all I get is the visual anomaly, the crazy half-moon of distorted squiggly color and light that slowly crawls across my field of vision. I never get any of the other symptoms one thinks of with the word migraine. No image I have found on the internet really does it justice, but it's somewhere between these two. Mine are not triggered by any sort of lighting condition or visual stimulus. Sometimes lack of (or too much) caffeine will bring one one. Sometimes it just comes out of nowhere for no apparent reason. No dizziness. And if the top picture I linked below had dropped the transparency level a bit on the colors, it would be more accurate. You can see through it.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  6. I.A. By the Barn

    I.A. By the Barn A very lost time traveller Contributor

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    My ocular migraines come on when I've been looking at something white or grey for too long. The pain sits behind my eyes and then travels upwards. Vision wise, I get lots of black spots, you know, like the ones on old film reels. They flicker in and out, sometimes with a rainbow outline, sometimes getting bigger. Can't see a thing when it happens really, everything seems really gappy, like a jigsaw with only five pieces down.
     

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