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Date of last update: 10/04/2017.

Forum Name: Headaches

Question: Experiencing aura, but no headache/migraine?

 mta41 - Sat Jan 05, 2008 11:39 pm

I've already tried reading about migraines and different types of headaches as well as looking through the forum. However, some of what i'm experiencing don't match. So i'm hoping someone might be able to help here.

I'm a 17 year old female and have had headaches since grade 8 although i never really paid attention to them until the last few years. My headaches usually occur on the left side of my head and may be accompanied by a stabbing pain in my left eye. Sometimes the headaches happen around my left eyebrow area. What really bothers me is that sometimes I see flashing lights in different shapes and sizes and they usually last about 30mins (sometimes only a few minutes). Once it occurs, I won't be able to get anywork done since it becomes difficult to read and write (can't judge distance). It used to happen more often (about once or twice per month), then less often (once a few months), but now they're occuring more often again. Usually it only happens in my left eye, but there have been some cases where it happens in both my eyes. I researched this and found out that it's called aura...due to migraines. However, my "aura's" aren't usually accompanied by headaches. I don't think I have migraines either since i don't experience any nausea and I don't have headaches bad enough that it will land me in bed.

I did go see a doctor at my university and she said that she doesn't think I have migraines either since my headaches aren't bad enough. She made an appointment for me to see an ophthalmologist, but I had class that day so I couldn't make it to the appointment.

What can I do to get rid of the flashing lights (It makes studying and concentrating in lectures difficult)? And if they're not caused by migraines, what else can they be caused by? Also, since sometimes my headaches are accompanied by a stabbing type of pain in my left eye, should I be concerned about this?
 Debbie Miller, RN - Thu Apr 03, 2008 6:10 pm

User avatar Hello,
I think seeing an eye doctor would be an obvious and easy thing to do to find out if there is any concern there. Flashing lights usually do not indicate any serious eye problem. If a large number develop or if they seem to be much worse over a period of time, an examination by an ophthalmologist is recommended. Also, if you see "floaters" or blacking out of some of your vision in addition to the lights, this might be a more serious eye condition such as retinal detachment so you would not want to delay.

It is also possible you have a mild form of migraine. Each person responds differently and they don't all get the same symptoms for any disorder. Ruling out eye problems is definitely the place to start. You may need to see a neurologist if it continues.

Best wishes.

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