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Interictal Pattern-Induced Visual Discomfort and Ictal Photophobia in Episodic Migraineurs: An Association of Interictal and Ictal Photophobia

Authors

  • Min Kyung Chu MD, PhD,

    1. From the Department of Neurology, Sacred Heart Hospital, Hallym University College of Medicine, Anyang, Korea (M.K. Chu); Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Sacred Heart Hospital, Hallym University College of Medicine, Anyang, Korea (H.-J. Im); Department of Neurology, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea (C.-S. Chung); Department of Neurology, Korea University Guro Hospital, Korea University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea (K. Oh).
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  • Hyoung-June Im MD, PhD,

    1. From the Department of Neurology, Sacred Heart Hospital, Hallym University College of Medicine, Anyang, Korea (M.K. Chu); Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Sacred Heart Hospital, Hallym University College of Medicine, Anyang, Korea (H.-J. Im); Department of Neurology, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea (C.-S. Chung); Department of Neurology, Korea University Guro Hospital, Korea University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea (K. Oh).
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  • Chin-Sang Chung MD, PhD,

    1. From the Department of Neurology, Sacred Heart Hospital, Hallym University College of Medicine, Anyang, Korea (M.K. Chu); Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Sacred Heart Hospital, Hallym University College of Medicine, Anyang, Korea (H.-J. Im); Department of Neurology, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea (C.-S. Chung); Department of Neurology, Korea University Guro Hospital, Korea University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea (K. Oh).
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  • Kyungmi Oh MD, PhD

    Corresponding author
    1. From the Department of Neurology, Sacred Heart Hospital, Hallym University College of Medicine, Anyang, Korea (M.K. Chu); Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Sacred Heart Hospital, Hallym University College of Medicine, Anyang, Korea (H.-J. Im); Department of Neurology, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea (C.-S. Chung); Department of Neurology, Korea University Guro Hospital, Korea University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea (K. Oh).
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  • Disclosures: None

  • Sponsorship: This study did not receive financial supports, provision of materials, or a discount from current rates.

  • Conflict of Interest: None

K. Oh, Department of Neurology, Korea University Guro Hospital, 97, Gurodong-Gil, Guro-gu, Seoul, 152-703, Korea, email: okyungmi@korea.ac.kr

Abstract

Background.— Pattern-induced visual discomfort and photophobia are frequently observed symptoms in migraineurs. The presumed pathophysiologic mechanisms of pattern glare and photophobia seem to overlap anatomically within the central nervous system.

Objective.— To assess the relationship between interictal pattern-induced visual discomfort and ictal photophobia in episodic migraineurs.

Methods.— We compared pattern-induced visual discomfort among 3 groups: controls, migraineurs without ictal photophobia (MwoP), and migraineurs with ictal photophobia (MwP). Photophobia was assessed with a validated photophobia questionnaire. Visual discomfort tests were performed using 3 striped patterns with different spatial frequencies. After viewing the patterns for 10 seconds, subjects were asked to report the severity of visual discomfort using 4 scales (none, mild, moderate, and severe) and using a 0-10 visual analog scale (VAS). We compared the proportion of subjects choosing moderate-to-severe discomfort and the median values of VAS scores for each pattern among the 3 groups.

Results.— We enrolled 35 controls, 18 MwoP, and 44 MwP, and there were no significant differences in clinical features among the 3 groups. MwP reported a significantly higher proportion of moderate-to-severe discomfort and higher median VAS scores than the controls and MwoP did. The intensity of discomfort increased with higher frequency of visual stimuli.

Conclusions.— We conclude that MwP experienced more severe pattern-induced visual discomfort as compared with the controls and MwoP.

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