Hemiplegic Migraine Symptoms

I recently shared a video of me in the middle of a Hemiplegic Migraine episode. After the fog lifted, I decided to share a video in a better state of mind to give you some examples of how Hemiplegic Migraines affect me.

 

Various symptoms of hemiplegic migraine

Hemiplegic Migraines can present in many different ways, which means no two patients might have the same exact symptoms with each episode. I often experience these two symptoms as indicators or preludes to my hemiplegic migraine: tingling in my hand that moves up my arm and feels like pain that moves up through my body & difficulty getting words out (aphasia).

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Comments

View Comments (7)
  • michelm
    8 months ago

    You certainly present with symptoms much more difficult than me. For about 40 years I have had lt sided headaches preceded by an aura of flashing light that includes a numb left arm and sometimes left eye “hallucinations” for lack of a better word – psychedelic light patterns, small people in a regular sized world, etc. All quite interesting. I don’t know if that is part of a hemiplegic migraine or not.

    However, about 5 years ago, just after lunch I was calmly sitting, when I had 3 very sharp and excruciating hits of pain into my left temple where I get migraines, then my left side went numb, no paralysis. I sat for a while, nothing changed. I did a neuro check and a stroke check (I’m a nurse) and all was well. I wanted to stay home but knew that I should check it out. The hospital and the neurologist that I was referred to insist it wasn’t a migraine (I was referred to the stroke neurologist, I have a low BP and all was well).

    I think it was a migraine. Does any one have any thoughts on this or recognize a headache like this?

  • elixabetta
    8 months ago

    I have this too. Has anyone found anything preventative or abortive that works for them? My doctor calls it basilar because i have pain in the back of my head as well as the left sided weakness.

  • michelm
    8 months ago

    Have you tried cold packs at the base of the head? I’m a nurse so let me explain why your doctor is calling your headaches basilar and what I mean. The basilar artery joins the arteries from the spinal column to the arteries from the brain. It’s a short blood vessel and it sits under the curve at the back of your head. So you may be able to stop that blood vessel from dilating, which is what causes the pain in migraines, by getting cold on that area right away. It’s worth trying.

  • #purpleproject moderator author
    2 months ago

    Helpful tip, Michelm. My suggestions to help with symptoms are a weighted blanket, heating pad, ice pack for my eyes & I use a certain Rx nose spray when they come on.
    Kelly, Team Member

  • mrst53
    8 months ago

    I have suffered from hemiplegic migraines for about 48 years. It took several years for the doctors to figure it out. I was lucky to find one at Walter Reed that was fantastic, who knew what I was feeling and what was causing it. What a relief. He gave meds to keep me from having them and something once they hit. I still have them if and when I am under a lot of stress. Christmas was really bad. At least I can take something and go to bed. Usually that does it.

  • DinaMay
    9 months ago

    I too have hemiplegic migraines. Before aphasia hits me, my speech slows down, a fact I was unaware of but which my husband saw as a sign a migraine was about to hit. My pain centers in my right eye or just behind it. But the hemiplegic effects mainly occur on my left side. My leg begins to feel alien to me, as if I had a wooden leg on that side. My left hand takes on a claw-like shape and I have great difficulty grasping things with that claw. It’s even harder to let go. Sometimes the toes,on my left foot clench, as if that foot wants to match the claw. All these symptoms are annoying. But the pain and especially the brain fog that surrounds it are disruptive in the extreme.

  • #purpleproject moderator author
    2 months ago

    It’s very hard to explain the prickly pain to anyone. They associate is with neuropathy right away, which I also have struggled with in the past. To me, HM prickles are the worst part of the whole condition. It’s so frustrating & all I can do is cry until it’s over if I have control of my breathing.
    Kelly, Team Member

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