MRI finds no migraine link to brain infarcts

Dutch researchers have found no link in MR images between silent brain infarcts and migraine headaches with aura, according to a study published online on 3 May in Brain.

The large cross-sectional study contradicts previous research that suggested a possible link between migraines and an increased risk of silent brain infarcts, as well as white matter hyperintensities, particularly in women suffering from migraine with aura. Silent brain infarcts and white matter hyperintensitiess have been reported to increase the risk of dementia.

This theory prompted a team led by Dr. David Gaist of the Odense University Hospital and University of Southern Denmark to evaluate whether women who suffer from migraine with aura might be more likely to have evidence of silent brain infarcts and an increased load of white matter hyperintensities on their MRI brain scans.

Researchers evaluated 172 women between 30 and 60 years of age who had migraine with aura and 139 unrelated women in the same age group with no migraine and served as control subjects.

The study found no evidence of an association between migraine with aura and silent brain infarcts or white matter hyperintensities.

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