Watch out for secret stroke risk
If you're young , you
probably don't think about suffering a stroke. But in some cases, youth is no
protection against this killer.
Many migraine sufferers are familiar with the added agony of auras --
stabbing or flashing light during a migraine that can make the simplest activity
a nightmare. Now scientists are saying there may be a link between migraine
auras and strokes, no matter what your age.
Almost half of all people experiencing migraines plus auras may also suffer
from a dangerous heart condition -- one that could allow blood clots to flow
directly into the brain. This condition, called patent foramen ovale, means you
are a prime candidate for a stroke. In fact, an Italian study found that having
migraines with auras was the only risk factor for the women under 35 who had
suffered a stroke.
Here's the evidence of a connection between migraines and stroke :
• Many people report their strokes occur during a typical migraine attack.
severe headaches occur in 25 percent of strokes.
• Researchers found that during the aura phase of young migraine sufferers,
blood flow to the brain was severely restricted -- almost reaching
• Many people suffering from migraines also have blood that's more likely to
clot. This could be due to a defect in the cells lining the heart and blood
If you are a young woman who has migraines plus auras, most doctors will tell
you not to smoke or take birth control pills -- two factors that will raise your
risk of stroke even higher. And anyone with migraines plus auras should see a