This study needed to be done. Am I dumber than dirt during a migraine attack? Or we can phrase that as; am I cognitively compromised. Whatever. We need to know. Because it feels like the IQ was sucked right out of my ears.
Researchers in Brazil and Portugal took 39 people with episodic migraines to study if their thinking was impacted by an untreated migraine attack. That isn’t to say treating the migraine would be different, when in fact it can actually enhance the problem, it is just that it creates more variables they would have had to consider.
The resulting findings were that, yes, indeed, we have trouble thinking during migraines and this is actually significant enough to measure. Awesome.
The study concluded “Cognitive performance decreases during migraine attacks, especially in reading and processing speed, verbal memory and learning, supporting patients’ subjective complaints. These findings suggest the existence of a reversible brain dysfunction during attacks of migraine without aura, which can relate specifically to migraine or be a consequence of acute pain processing by the brain.”
“Trouble reading, processing, remembering . . . it’s all very common during a migraine attack.
We know that even some severe forms of temporary memory loss are connected to migraine attacks. The symptoms can be quite serious, and sometimes will show up in very noticeable ways, such as difficulty recognizing faces, or slurred speech.
The question remains whether or not there is permanent brain damage from migraine. Although there does seem to be some cumulative damage from migraine, study after study seems to confirm that permanent cognitive problems are rare. In fact, one study even suggested that migraine brains stay sharper than other brains in the long run!” Headache and Migraine News
It might seem like this study is unnecessary since we All Know this. Yet, knowing it and proving it are different things. We all just say it is the prodrome. Or it is the pain. or it is the brain fog. We really do not know what is causing this. We just know it is there. So looking into it verifies it is there. How it manifests. What areas of thinking are affected. And that it is mostly transitory in nature.
I do know that I have that temporary memory loss often at work. And I would have difficulty recognizing faces. Made it very hard in my job… in Sales.