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Triggers and Causes

Genetic and Congenital Causes

  • By Carolyn

    I just started seeing a new headache specialist, and he’s brought up things that I’ve never heard another doctor discuss. I got blood work back today, and I have the MTHFR gene variant that puts me at risk for migraines (not a risk for me – more like a reality) as well as Fibromyalgia.

    I also have an extra cervical rib, and am slightly hyper mobile.

    I’ve had migraines for over twenty years now but I’m starting to feel as though I have all of the puzzle pieces. I can’t quite put them together though, and I know there are other factors on top of these items like diet and exercise.

    Is anyone else researching the connection to this genetic mutation, or odd bone structures in relation to migraines? I want to learn more but I keep finding some conflicting stuff online.

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  • By Ellen Schnakenberg

    I’ve been looking at MTHFR for a while, and there looks to be some evidence for it to be a potential trigger, but more info needs to be discussed about it. Hypermobility definitely complicates Migraine and Migraine treatment. I have hypermobility myself. Super grosses people out when I move my arms and my ribs pop in and out, lol. There is research on this. Odd bone structures? Hmmm, unless they’re cranial or cervical I haven’t heard of anything. Is interesting though. Do you have anything to share?

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  • By Lexie

    Carolyn, I had 2 fully formed cervical ribs that had to be taken out. Unfortunately, they didn’t impact my migraines at all. However I have abnormalities at C1 that none of the neurosurgeons, orthopedic surgeons, neurologists, etc have ever seen or heard of. I have seen almost every specialist that is at the top of their field, and was told that I am 1 of maybe 3 people in the world that have this congenital birth defect. Unfortunately the structural abnormalities in my cervical spine effect my vertebral artery so, when my neck and trap muscles spasm badly the cervogenical migraines are unbearable and can’t be treated by normal migraine meds. That being said, I have found (and my docs have verified) that increasing my normal muscle relaxants and combining migraine meds can help break the cycle. Now, I DO NOT advocate that for others-everyone has to talk with their doctors. Depending on your situation, you could talk with your neuro about this possibility and see if it helps you. I hope it does. I know how bad these types of migraines are. Good luck!

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