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Motion processing deficits in migraine


Allison M McKendrick, 35 Stirling Highway, Crawley, WA 6009, Australia. Tel. 61 893803468, fax 61 893801006, e-mail


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This study was designed to determine whether cortical motion processing abnormalities are present in individuals with migraine. Performance was measured using a visual motion coherence task (motion coherence perimetry, MCP) thought to depend on the operation of cortical area V5. Motion coherence thresholds were measured using stimuli composed of moving dots at 17 locations in the central ± 20° of visual field. Pre-cortical visual function was also measured using frequency doubling perimetry (FDP) at the same 17 locations. Several migraine subjects demonstrated significant pre-cortical visual functional abnormalities, however, most subjects had normal visual fields measured with FDP. Abnormal MCP performance was measured in 15 of 19 migraine-with-aura subjects, and 11 of 17 migraine-without-aura subjects. A decreased ability to detect coherent motion may possibly be explained by an increase in baseline neuronal noise, such as would be consistent with the concept of cortical hyperexcitability in migraine.