fMRI of Menstrual Migraine PDF Print E-mail
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Tuesday, 08 December 2009 03:22

This was a fascinating project that I worked on at the Olin Center from 2006 to 2008. My goal with this project was to induce a migraine in participants while they received a functional MRI scan. The goal from that is to observe migraine pathogenesis, or any interesting physiologic activity that occurs at the beginning of migraine. The biggest challenge was actually getting someone to get a migraine while the scanner was running. I had a self imposed time limit of about an hour for the participant to be in the scanner, because of expensive scan slots, scanner scheduling, and that no one with a migraine would want to be scanned for that long.

It took a lot of work to get the IRB to approve the protocol, but because I was going to scan menstrual associated migraines, the IRB eventually got the picture. Women with menstrual associated migraines get migraines like clockwork at the beginning of their menstruation cycle, so they would get a migraine whether we scanned them or not. It just happened to the best time to scan them. When I told a friend what I was doing in this project, he said "You have the greatest job in the world. You're going to find PMSing women, give them a migraine and then give them an MRI. Good luck". It actually turned out to be pretty difficult to induce a migraine, even in women with predictable menstrual migraine.

My initial recruitment goal was 15 subjects (6 migraine w/aura, 6 migraine w/out aura, 3 healthy controls). As of Fall 2007 I had recruited 12, scanned 7 (including test subjects to tweak protocol), and successfully induced and observed a migraine in one patient. I gave a talk at the Olin Neuropsychiatry Research Center on September 25, 2007 about the study and a summary of current migraine pathogenesis understanding. The talk is available in PDF. The most interesting finding for the single subject who got a migraine was a negative activation in the trigeminal ganglion during the visual stimulation from the flashing checkerboards. The subject who did not get a migraine had no activation there. The MR angiogram produced no significant changes in blood vessel diameter.

New site design! PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Monday, 07 December 2009 03:25

I've decided to redo gbook.org using a content management system to allow me to easily maintain the site. This frees me hand editing the pages, which is fun but very tedious. I'm also adding a woodworking section, where I'll post some articles about the CNC machine I'm building and other woodworking projects.


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