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Migraine Diagnosis

Migraine Diagnosis
Migraine headache

Your family doctor might be able to diagnose and treat your migraines.  However, when normal treatment does not work, or when your doctor suspects a certain underlying cause-such as a neurological problem, you may be referred to a neurologist.  Children should see a pediatrician, who may then recommend seeing a pediatric neurologist.  

Medical history
Your family physician may ask for your family medical history because you may be more susceptible to having migraines if it runs in the family.  So be sure to come to your appointment with information about cases of migraine among family members.  You'll also be asked to describe the symptoms, the circumstances when symptoms present themselves (e.g. stress) and any other details about your migraine experience that you can remember.  

Medical exams
Usually, a description of symptoms, medical history, and family's history of migraines will be sufficient for a diagnosis.  However, if migraines cannot be explained due to normal causes, or if they are very intense or severe, your doctor will want to explore further the causes of your migraine.  He/she may recommend one of several tests, which may include:

Computerized tomography (CT) - During a CT scan, a view of your brain is provided by X-rays that may reveal infections or tumors that could be the cause of your symptoms.

Lumbar puncture (also known as spinal tap) - Cerebrospinal fluid is removed by a needle injected between the vertebrae in your lower back in this procedure.  This procedure may be ordered if your doctor suspects that meningitis or other medical problems are the culprit.

Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) - MRIs allow for images of the brain to be taken that can be used to view the blood vessels in the brain, tumors, etc.

After understanding your symptoms and medical history, and perhaps with a test, your doctor will be better able to make a diagnosis of whether or not you are experiencing migraine headaches.  Once a diagnosis is made, you can then begin treatment, including migraine relief alternative options.   Read here for information regarding treatment options for mirgaine in the Treating Migraines section now.  

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Tags: migraine headaches, migraine relief, migraine, treatment options, lumbar puncture, pediatrician, alternative, Meningitis, infections, treatment, migraines, Headaches, procedure, diagnosis, symptoms, lumbar, Stress, brain, mri, tumors
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