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Diagnosis of Migraine & Headache Types

New Here – Migraine or Stroke?

  • By keech

    Hello,
    Two weeks ago my husband (65) suddenly was unable to read the computer screen or from a book. He was in no pain and could hold a conversation with no difficulty. I rushed him to the ER suspecting stroke. At the ER he could still answer questions correctly but not read…the words came out wrong or not at all. The doctor suspected TIA, did CT scan and who know what all else. Over the course of about an hour the reading got worse and he lost his ability to correctly answer questions. At that point they said he was having a stoke and gave him the clot-busting t-PA.

    At that time the headache (which he barely remembers now) began, so intense that he was holding his head and swaying. Then the vomiting began. We were ambulanced to a larger hospital and ICU. For almost 20 hours he couldn’t respond verbally to most questions. Headache and vomiting continued until they gave him two doses of Fentanyl. At no time did he lose strength on either side of his body of face. He also had strong pain in his right abdomen that they x-rayed (no cause found).

    After about 20 long hours, he began to get his speech back, answering questions accurately. By 24 hours he was up, talking, eating, walking…no problem. MRI showed NO signs of stoke. Neurologist suspects migraine with aphasia. He’s only had one possible migraine in his life several years ago (headache and vomiting).

    He has coronary artery disease, so we are naturally cautious. They put him on Plavix and aspirin with follow ups with a neurologist and a vascular surgeon in about two weeks. A-fib monitor showed no problems.

    My question…has anyone ever heard of aphasia symptoms from a migraine lasting so long?

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  • By Nancy Harris Bonk Moderator

    Hi keech,

    Thank you for your question. That sounds like a scary episode, I’m sorry your husband went through that but happy to hear he is OK now.

    Yes, a migraine attack can last anywhere from 4-72 hours and aphasia (along with many others) can be migraine attack symptom. You can read more about the symptoms of a migraine attack here; https://migraine.com/living-migraine/patient-perspective-migraine-symptoms/.

    We don’t like to see migraine attack symptoms last longer than 72 hours as this can increase our risk of stroke and a condition called status migrainous. We have more information in this article; https://migraine.com/blog/what-is-emergency/.

    I hope this helps. Please keep us posted on how your husband is doing,

    Nancy

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  • By missarach

    Hello,
    I just recently got out of the hospital because I went in to the er with a pounding headache am not left sided facial droop i had the headache at the point for 4 days with mo relief over the course of being there first they did a ct of my head and seen nothing. But bye this point my left leg and arm had lost strength I was still talking fine answering questions fine so on but they where worried I was having a stroke. So they decided to do a MRI all this time my head is still killing me and all they want to give me for pain is toredol witch is barley touching it my gf whom is a np yells them why don’t you five her some fiorecet it would help better than the toredol. Nope would not do it .took them 4 days of this to do my MRI and diagnose me with a complex migraine with stroke like symptoms.and periscope fiorecet to go home with maybe they should have listened to my gf. Now I have to go to see the neurologist for further treatment.

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  • By Nancy Harris Bonk Moderator

    Hi missarach,

    Thank you for reaching out to us. I bet that was a scary event. Are you feeling better now?

    Let me share with you information on migraine disease that you can share with your doctor. https://migraine.com/living-migraine/those-complex-complicated/.

    And this information can help you get ready for your next appointment; https://migraine.com/getting-help/prepare-docto-visit/

    Keep us posted on how you are feeling,

    Nancy

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