Vol 51, No 5 (2017)

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New-onset hemodialysis-related headache presenting as migraine aura

Domenico Chirchiglia1, Michele Andreucci2, Attilio Della Torre3, Serena Marianna Lavano4, Pasquale Chirchiglia4, Angelo Lavano1
DOI: 10.1016/j.pjnns.2017.06.003
Neurol Neurochir Pol 2017;51(5):419-420.


Hemodialysis headache (HDH) is an infrequent new-onset symptom, occurring mainly in old uremic patients. Type of pain is nonspecific, occurs during hemodialysis treatment, assuming features similar to tension-type headache and representing a problem, also as regards the therapy to be taken. International Headache Society (IHS) has placed this form of headache among the headaches disorders of homeostasis. We found a case of new-onset HDH in old uremic man, presenting with migraine aura features. A similar case has not been reported in literature, placing us some questions: why and how does this happen? What are the mechanisms involved? Role of trigeminal-vascular system and cortical spreading depression as regards the aura could be considered, through the activation of neuroinflammatory events, lastly causing migraine aura. Moreover, the administration of flunarizine strongly improved migraine symptoms in our patient, as happens in migraine syndromes. Definitely, this case leads us to think that some mechanisms involved in headaches will need to be further clarified.

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Neurologia i Neurochirurgia Polska