migraine

noun
mi·​graine | \ ˈmī-ˌgrān How to pronounce migraine (audio) , British often ˈmē- \
plural migraines

Definition of migraine

1a : a condition marked by recurring moderate to severe headache with throbbing pain that usually lasts from four hours to three days, typically begins on one side of the head but may spread to both sides, is often accompanied by nausea, vomiting, and sensitivity to light or sound, and is sometimes preceded by an aura and is often followed by fatigue Migraine affects three times as many women as men.The Journal of the American Medical Association About 20 percent of migraine sufferers experience an aura as the first symptom of an attack. The aura may be a pulsing star of light, or a dance of geometric forms across the visual field …— Natalie Angier
b : a condition that is a variant form of the typical migraine but in which headache is absent or not a prominent symptom:
(1) : a condition in which an aura involving visual disturbances (such as diplopia, scotoma, or tunnel vision) is the main symptom and is not followed by headache

called also acephalgic migraine, silent migraine

(2) : a condition that is marked by episodic bodily dysfunction (such as cyclic vomiting, abdominal pain, dizziness, vertigo, or unilateral weakness or paralysis) and may be accompanied by headache abdominal migraine vestibular migraine In retinal migraine, repeated episodes of unilateral visual disorder occur with or without headache.— Sid Gilman
2 : an episode or attack of migraine Most patients use a class of drugs known as "triptans," to relieve occasional migraines. But triptans don't work for 20% to 30% of patients.— Tara Parker-Pope

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Other Words from migraine

migrainous \ ˈmī-​ˌgrā-​nəs How to pronounce migrainous (audio) \ adjective

Examples of migraine in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web At church, no one could see my migraines, my fluttering heart, my constipation, or my weird rashes. Health.com, "This Woman Was Bitten by a Tick in 2007—and She's Still Dealing With Chronic Lyme Disease Symptoms," 28 May 2020 Unfortunately, common triggers for migraines include stress and sleep changes, as the Mayo Clinic explains. Colleen Stinchcombe, SELF, "9 Ways People Are Getting Migraine Relief These Days," 28 Apr. 2020 My family doctor gave me Maxalt for migraines, inflammation meds, and suggested massage. Harper's Magazine, "Mammary Lapse," 30 Mar. 2020 My family doctor gave me Maxalt for migraines, inflammation meds, and suggested massage. Andrew J. Bacevich, Harper's magazine, "Mammary Lapse," 2 Mar. 2020 The company, a pioneer of biotechnology, is best known for its drugs for cancer, with other products targeting high cholesterol, kidney disease and migraines. ... Joseph Walker, WSJ, "Biotech Pioneer Amgen Joins Hunt for Coronavirus Drug," 2 Apr. 2020 Hundreds died in the immediate effects of the toxic environment, and thousands of others were left with neurological conditions, including chronic numbness and migraines or birth defects. Theresa Machemer, Smithsonian Magazine, "A Dead Cat’s Brain Revives Discussion of 1960s Mercury Poisoning Disaster in Japan," 26 Mar. 2020 If left untreated, later symptoms of the illness include migraines, joint pain, neurological problems and more. Brittney Mcnamara, Teen Vogue, "Justin Bieber Has Lyme Disease and Says He's “Overcoming” it," 9 Jan. 2020 Bridger said exercise has helped relieve her migraines. Marissa Cruz Lemar, chicagotribune.com, "Never exercised? It’s not too late to take steps toward an active life.," 21 Oct. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'migraine.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of migraine

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for migraine

Middle English mygreyn, from Middle French migraine, modification of Late Latin hemicrania pain in one side of the head, from Greek hēmikrania, from hēmi- hemi- + kranion cranium

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Time Traveler for migraine

Time Traveler

The first known use of migraine was in the 15th century

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Statistics for migraine

Last Updated

3 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Migraine.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/migraine. Accessed 5 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for migraine

migraine

noun
How to pronounce migraine (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of migraine

: a very bad headache

migraine

noun
mi·​graine | \ ˈmī-ˌgrān, British often ˈmē- \

Medical Definition of migraine

1a : a condition marked by recurring moderate to severe headache with throbbing pain that usually lasts from four hours to three days, typically begins on one side of the head but may spread to both sides, is often accompanied by nausea, vomiting, and sensitivity to light or sound, and is sometimes preceded by an aura and is often followed by fatigue

Note: Migraine tends to occur in more than one member of a family and is of uncertain origin though attacks appear to be associated with dilation of intracranial blood vessels and release of serotonin and other inflammatory substances.

Migraine is a common disorder that can severely affect patients' quality of life and daily function. The patients typically have attacks of unilateral, pulsating, severe or moderately severe headache aggravated by routine physical activity …The New England Journal of Medicine About 20 percent of migraine sufferers experience an aura as the first symptom of an attack. The aura may be a pulsing star of light, or a dance of geometric forms across the visual field …— Natalie Angier
b : a condition that is a variant form of the typical migraine but in which headache is absent or not a prominent symptom:
(1) : a condition in which an aura involving visual disturbances (as diplopia, scotoma, or tunnel vision) is the main symptom and is not followed by headache Approximately 20% of migraineurs may experience acephalgic attacks of migraine at one time or another. Indeed, that various symptoms can occur in the absence of any headache has been noted for some time; in fact, visual phenomena were described as early as the 12th century.— Donald M. Pedersen et al.

called also acephalgic migraine, silent migraine

(2) : a condition that is marked by episodic bodily dysfunction (as cyclic vomiting, abdominal pain, dizziness, vertigo, or unilateral weakness or paralysis) and may be accompanied by headache abdominal migraine vestibular migraine In retinal migraine, repeated episodes of unilateral visual disorder occur with or without headache.— Sid Gilman
2 : an episode or attack of migraine Most patients use a class of drugs known as "triptans," such as Imitrex, to relieve occasional migraines. But triptans don't work for 20% to 30% of patients.— Tara Parker-Pope Lynn Goldstein, a dietitian at Weill Cornell, advises patients to remove suspected "trigger" foods from their diet for a period of time and monitor how their migraines are affected.Food & Fitness Advisor

called also sick headache

Other Words from migraine

migrainous \ -​ˌgrā-​nəs How to pronounce migrainous (audio) \ adjective

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More from Merriam-Webster on migraine

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with migraine

Spanish Central: Translation of migraine

Nglish: Translation of migraine for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of migraine for Arabic Speakers

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