Is this what’s causing your migraines?
A recent study out of Germany attributes migraine cause to sodium level in Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF).
Cerebrospinal fluid surrounds the brain and spinal cord, providing a cushion for the brain while also helping to ensure chemical stability for proper brain function.
Using a cerebral sodium MRI, researchers discovered a connection between migraine patients and increased levels of sodium in cerebrospinal fluid. They are hopeful the discovery will make migraine diagnoses easier.
Typically, migraines can be quite difficult to diagnose because there are different types, and not all patients experience the same symptoms.
“Migraines are currently diagnosed after performing a thorough history and physical examination,” says Dr. Smriti Wagle of Advocate Medical Group. “The characteristics of the headaches experienced by the patient are compared with diagnostic criteria to label a headache as a migraine.”
As for the study, Dr. Wagle suggests there are still many unanswered questions regarding the utilization of sodium levels to diagnose migraines. She also points out that it doesn’t outline how to reduce sodium levels for those individuals whose sodium is too high.
“There are definitely many unanswered questions regarding the relationship between sodium and migraines that would need to be addressed prior to utilizing sodium levels as a way to diagnose migraines,” Dr. Wagle adds.
She wants individuals to keep this in mind: “If you are experiencing debilitating headaches associated with nausea and sensitivity to light or are having headaches for more than 10 days per month, be sure to schedule an appointment with your doctor to discuss the best treatment options for you.”
About the Author
Patrick Ihnat, health enews contributor, is a public affairs intern at Advocate Health Care in Downers Grove. He is currently completing a Master’s degree in Public Health from Benedictine University. When he isn’t interning, Patrick enjoys spending time with friends and family, playing hockey and cheering on the Blackhawks.