Navigation Links
Migraine sufferers: More difficulty tuning out visual stimuli?
Date:4/8/2010

Rockville, MD When people feel the onset of a migraine headache, they may head to a dark, quiet room to rest. This instinct may be sound: A new study suggests that even without the headache, migraine sufferers may process visual cues better in an environment with few visual distractions.

In a study published in the April issue of Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science ("Visual Noise Selectively Degrades Vision in Migraine"), researchers from Scotland's Glasgow Caledonian University asked migraine sufferers to pick out a small disk of light amid visual noise, an effect similar to the black-and-white snow on an off-air television. Without the visual noise, people prone to migraine could identify the light disk about as well as the control group. When the noise was added, migraine sufferers ("migraineurs") performed significantly worse.

"Our visual environment is generally very busy and full of objects, many of which are important at some times but not at others. Normally, we can attend effortlessly to those items of interest and often do not even notice others," said lead researcher Doreen Wagner, Diplom-Ingenieur (FH) of Optometry, PhD student in Vision Science. "Migraineurs may be at a disadvantage when searching for details, especially in cluttered environments."

About a third of migraine sufferers experience neurological disturbances before a headache begins. These auras are frequently visual and can appear as shimmering lights or zig-zag patterns that move across the field of vision. The study showed that migraine sufferers with auras were the most adversely affected by the addition of visual noise.

Wagner said a current theory about migraines is that nerve cells in the brain of migraineurs are excitable and when exposed to certain triggers, the increased excitability may cause whole clusters of nerve cells to become overactive, similar to a spasm, and bring on the headache. In this study, "We believe that the noise on the display overexcites the nerve cells in the brain of the migraineurs. This in turn makes it harder for a migraineur to see the disk."

Although Wagner noted that further research should examine the connections between the severity and frequency of the attacks and visual problems, she said the results may have practical applications for migraine sufferers today.

"It might be helpful to avoid such 'noisy' environments which may impair their performance, scenes overloaded with visual distracters, for example computer screens and learning tools which have a lot of visual information on them." she said.


'/>"/>

Contact: Jo Olson
jolson@arvo.org
Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Concentrating on different aspects of pain leads to breakthrough in migraine genetics
2. Treating chronic pain, migraine & muscle spasticity through inhibition of neurotransmitter glutamate
3. Overuse of narcotics and barbiturates may make migraine worse
4. OptiNoses novel intranasal sumatriptan product highly effective in treating migraines
5. MIT: Why we have difficulty recognizing faces in photo negatives
6. Fine-tuning lasers to destroy blood-borne diseases like AIDS
7. Tuning in on cellular communication in the fruit fly
8. Brains timing linked with timescales of the natural visual world
9. The human brain: Detective of auditory and visual change
10. Researchers visualize complex pigment mixtures in living cells
11. Visual technology enables brain to learn in new ways
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/29/2017)... March 29, 2017  higi, the health IT company ... North America , today announced a Series ... acquisition of EveryMove. The new investment and acquisition accelerates ... tools to transform population health activities through the collection ... higi collects and secures data today on ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... The Controller General of Immigration from Maldives Mr. Mohamed Anwar ... the prestigious international IAIR Award for the most innovative high security ePassport ... ... Maldives Immigration Controller General, Mr. ... on the right) have received the IAIR award for the "Most innovative ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... Research and Markets has announced the addition of the ... to 2025" report to their offering. ... The Global Vehicle Anti-Theft System Market ... the next decade to reach approximately $14.21 billion by 2025. ... for all the given segments on global as well as regional ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/11/2017)... ... October 11, 2017 , ... ... in its endogenous context, enabling overexpression experiments and avoiding the use of exogenous ... RNA guides is transformative for performing systematic gain-of-function studies. , This complement ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... ... October 11, 2017 , ... Proscia Inc ., a ... Webinar titled, “Pathology is going digital. Is your lab ready?” with Dr. Nicolas ... practices and how Proscia improves lab economics and realizes an increase in diagnostic ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... Tbilisi, Georgia (PRWEB) , ... October 11, 2017 , ... ... disaster, taking the lives of over 5.5 million people each year. Especially those living ... the greenovative startup Treepex - based in one of the most pollution-affected countries globally ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... ... , ... San Diego-based team building and cooking events company, Lajollacooks4u, has unveiled ... bold new look is part of a transformation to increase awareness, appeal to new ... , It will also expand its service offering from its signature gourmet cooking classes ...
Breaking Biology Technology: