Migraine refers to repeated attacks of headache which are:

  • Moderately or severely painful
  • Frequent or infrequent
  • Last a few hours to a few of days
  • Often affecting one side of the head (but maybe bilateral in rare cases)
  • Often accompanied by loss of appetite, nausea and vomiting

What Are The Different Types Of Migraine?

Migraine headache can be classified as:

  • Classical migraine: This type is associated with ‘AURA’ -a paranormal activity consisting of neurological symptoms that maybe visual (related to sight), auditory (hearing related), or olfactory (unusual smells) etc.
  • Common migraine: This occurs without aura and is more common.

Who Gets Migraine?

Migraine aftects women more commonly than men. In childhood, however, migraine is more common in boys than in girls. It may begin or occur at any age but is rare after age 50. With increased age, attacks usually become less severe and less frequent.

What May Patients Feel Before An Attack of Migraine?

  • Talkativeness
  • Surge of energy
  • Hunger or decreased appetite
  • Drowsiness
  • Depression
  • Irritability
  • Tension
  • Restlessness

What Might A Patient Experience During An Attack Of Migraine?

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhoea
  • Sweating
  • Cold hands
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Sensitivity to sound
  • Scalp tenderness
  • Pale colour
  • Pulsing temple
  • Pressure pain

What Are The Triggers For An Attack Of Migraine?

Migraine headaches are often triggered by:

Changes in daily cycles:

  • Over sleeping
  • Working late hours
  • Missing breakfast
  • Menses

Environment or Diet factors:

  • Changes in weather
  • Altitude
  • Bright light/flashing light
  • Smoking
  • Alcohol
  • Some medications

Mental state:

  • Anxiety
  • Anger
  • Depression
  • Fear

Are There Warning Signs Of A Migraine Attack?

It is common to sense a migraine attack before it starts:

  • Common warning signs include nausea, vomiting and sensitivity to light, noise, or smells.
  • A patient may see an “aura” of flashing lights or colors.
  • Experiencing tunnel vision is also possible.
  • The warning signs may last about 15 – 30 minutes and are followed by the pain of the migraine itself.

How Can Migraine Be Treated?

Follow-up with a primary care physician and/or neurologist are important for patients with migraine. Common treatments for less severe Migraine include:

  • Avoiding precipitants of attacks, if possible.
  • Resting in a darkened, quiet room is helpful just before and during an attack.
  • Some patients find cold compresses to painful areas helpful.
  • Medications such as:
    • Analgesics (Aspirin, Paracetamol)
    • Triptans (in severe attack)
    • Ergotamine preparations
    • Anti-emetics
    • Beta-blockers (Gold standard for prophylaxis)

With the recent advances in medical technology, there are now quite a number of new treatment options available to most patients. It is best to discuss these treatments with your doctor.

If you are suffering from migraine, or if your condition has not improved despite standard treatments, we are able to help.

Simply call us at +65 6732 2397

or leave a message below for Dr Tan to discuss a customized non-invasive solution for you.

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painrelief clinicOur Doctor

Dr. Terence Tan

MBBS(Singapore), GDFM


Pain Association of Singapore,

Singapore Medical Association

acute painCall for Appointments

+65 6732 2397

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#10-00 Shaw House

Medical Suites @ Orchard

Singapore 238 868