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Ocular migraines
Ocular migraines can severely constrict and even frighten those affected. There are a variety
of causes – if in doubt, seek specialist advice.
30 to 60 people in every 100 000 (a number which decreases significantly with age and around
two-thirds of whom are women) suffer from a special type of migraine called an ocular migraine
or retinal migraine.
The symptoms are temporary
– Flickering
– Loss of field of vision
– Sensitivity to light
– Visual disturbances
– Nausea and dizziness
The symptoms often occur in both eyes at once, and unsettle or scare patients. They constrain
sufferers in the workplace and sometimes even leave them incapable of working until the
­symptoms subside. Research into the causes is based on shortcomings in our nervous system.
Hormones play a role, as do external substances which can affect them such as alcohol,
tobacco, or medication. Migraines often coincide with the menstrual cycle. If they last for
short periods of time then no treatment is required, but if they are longer-lasting, traditional
and more modern migraine substances are used. This condition does not cause any damage
or have any consequences.
It is extremely important that flickering vision is not confused with flashes in the vision, which
often marks the beginnings of a detached retina – an ophthalmological emergency which can
result in blindness if not treated.
If in doubt, consult your ophthalmologist immediately. Any reputable ophthalmic practice will
be permanently prepared for this situation.
Do you have any queries about this article or are you interested in another topic
­relating to the eye? Please contact the qualified team of AugenCenter Dr. Selde.
We are happy to take the time to advise you individually.
Dr. med. Ken Selde
Klosbachstrasse 37, 8032 Zürich
Facharzt FMH für Augenheilkunde
und Augenchirurgie
T +41 44 261 70 10
F +41 44 261 66 20
[email protected]