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Keywords:

  • Aura;
  • Cortical hypersensitivity;
  • Cortical spreading depression;
  • Episodic disorders;
  • Familial hemiplegic migraine;
  • Gene mutations;
  • Kainate receptors;
  • Seizures;
  • Trigger factors

Summary

Migraine and epilepsy are comorbid conditions that have many clinical similarities. There are also cellular physiologic similarities, and some antiepileptic drugs are prophylactic in migraine, suggesting common pathophysiologic elements. The most compelling evidence comes from familial hemiplegic migraine, in which migraine and epilepsy can be caused by mutations in the same gene. For an expanded treatment of this topic see Jasper’s Basic Mechanisms of the Epilepsies, Fourth Edition (Noebels JL, Avoli M, Rogawski MA, Olsen RW, Delgado-Escueta AV, eds) published by Oxford University Press (available on the National Library of Medicine Bookshelf [NCBI] at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books).