A migraine aura is a warning sign of an oncoming migraine headache. An aura develops gradually, usually within 30 minutes before a migraine headache starts, and consists of visual disturbances and physical sensations.
Not everyone who suffers from migraines develops an aura. For those who do, common symptoms of a migraine aura include:
- Visual changes. For example:
- Zigzag or wavy lines
- Flashes or sparks of bright or colored lights
- Slowly spreading spots
- Distortions in the shape or size of objects
- Blind or dark spots in the field of vision
- Numbness or a "pins-and-needles" sensation in one hand or the other.
Other, less common symptoms of a migraine aura can occur, including:
- Tingling or numbness around the mouth and nose or in the arms or shoulders.
- Temporary weakness on one side of the body.
- Brief inability to put words in the proper order, or difficulty finding the right words.
|Primary Medical Reviewer||Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine|
|Specialist Medical Reviewer||Colin Chalk, MD, CM, FRCPC - Neurology|
|Last Revised||June 10, 2011|