Neurology Consultants of Arizona
Luay Shayya, MD
Neurology & Concussion Specialist located in Scottsdale, AZ
Debilitating migraines affect about 19% of women and 9% of men, causing headaches that can last 4-72 hours if you don’t seek treatment. As a migraine expert, Luay Shayya, MD, at Neurology Consultants of Arizona has helped many patients in Scottsdale, Arizona, with treatments that help prevent migraines and reduce their severity. To get help for your migraines, call the office or schedule an appointment online.
Migraine Q & A
What causes migraines?
Migraines are throbbing, severe headaches caused by nerves that overreact to stimuli or triggers. The experts believe you inherit a susceptibility to hyperexcitable nerves. The triggers vary for each patient, but some of the most common include:
- Strong odors
- Bright or flashing lights
- Missing a meal
- Weather changes
- Hormone changes, such as women’s menstrual periods
- Certain foods and food additives
The triggers that affect you may also be inherited.
What stages and symptoms occur during a migraine?
For many patients, migraine symptoms begin before their headache pain and continue for a time after the pain is gone. Migraine headaches go through several stages:
In the days before your headache pain starts, you may develop subtle symptoms like food cravings, excessive thirst, and mood changes.
You may not experience aura because it only occurs in one-third of migraine patients. Aura symptoms start about 30 minutes before your migraine begins. The symptoms may affect your speech, hearing, or muscles, or may cause unusual sensations like tingling. The most common aura symptoms are vision changes. For example, you may see flashes of light or wavy lines.
The attack stage is when your migraine begins. These headaches cause an intense, throbbing pain that’s often around one temple, but it can spread to involve both temples. Untreated migraines may last 4-72 hours. During that time, you’ll also have symptoms such as:
- Pain that’s worse when you move
- Sensitivity to lights, sounds, smells, and touch
- Nausea and vomiting
You may also feel lightheaded, develop blurry vision, or faint during your migraine.
After your migraine pain subsides, you may continue to feel confused, weak, or have hypersensitivity to light, sound, and smells. These symptoms may last 24 hours after your migraine headache goes away.
How are migraines treated?
Several types of medications can reduce the severity of your migraine when taken at the first sign of a headache. You may also benefit from daily medications that reduce the frequency, severity, and length of your migraines.
Dr. Shayya also offers several specialized migraine treatments, including Toradol® injections and occipital nerve blocks to relieve the pain. An occipital nerve block is used to alleviate migraines that last longer than 72 hours or that don’t improve with other medications.
If you have chronic migraines, Dr. Shayya may recommend Botox® injections. Chronic migraines consist of having 15 or more migraine days a month, with each headache lasting at least four hours. Botox is a preventive treatment that reduces the frequency of your headaches.
You can get help for migraine pain at Neurology Consultants of Arizona. Call or schedule an appointment online.