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Abdominal Migraine In Children
Abdominal Migraine Treatment
Abdominal Migraine Symptoms
Abdominal Migraine In Adults
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Abdominal Migraines Affect Children.
An abdominal migraine is pain in the abdomen without the headache to go along with it. Also known as periodic syndrome, they occur mostly in young children (usually girls) between the ages of five and nine and occur rarely in adults. There does seem to be a certain connection between the abdomen and a migraine. That connection is the fact that abdominal migraines affect children in families with a history of migraine headaches. Unfortunately, most children who suffer from abdominal migraines will go on to suffer from migraines as adults, starting as early as puberty. Doctors cannot depend on the symptoms alone to diagnose abdominal migraines.
Symptoms and Diagnosis
The most common symptoms of an abdominal migraine are actually similar to the symptoms of a migraine headache, but without the headache. These symptoms are:
Pain in the mid range of the abdomen that is moderate to severe in intensity and lasting anywhere from 1 to 72 hours
Nausea Vomiting Diarrhea Sensitivity to light and sound
Dizziness Dark circles under the eyes
Diagnosing abdominal migraines based on these symptoms is not easy for doctors to do. Just like the normal migraine headache, there is no scientific test that can unequivocally prove what it is. The child may have all of these symptoms mentioned above or only one. The symptoms of abdominal migraines are sometimes mis-diagnosed as the flu, but the symptoms can come back 2 or 3 times in the same month.
Thats why finding the correct diagnosis is difficult and why the key diagnostic tool is often the childs family history. Doctors will often take blood and urine samples and perform tests to rule out any other more serious reasons for the pain. It is becoming more and more apparent to doctors that migraines of any kind can cause some permanent damage, so determining that the problem is an abdominal migraine and finding a treatment quickly is crucial.
Causes of Migraines
There is really no official known cause for abdominal migraines. Abdominal migraines, as with migraine headaches, can be averted by staying away from certain foods that can trigger a flare up. Some people believe caffeinated drinks, cheese, and chocolate, although there is no science to substantiate this. Stress is thought to be a possible cause of abdominal migraines.
Treating Abdominal Migraines
Abdominal migraines are considered a variety of migraine headache, so there is really no definitive treatment for them. Therefore, they are treated the same way a migraine a headache is treated.
Keeping the age of the child in mind, painkillers are used along with sedatives and anti-nausea drugs. Inderol is sometimes prescribed to treat migraines in children. Another drug called Propranolol is a preventative beta-blocker often used. Midrin, which is a prescription drug for adult migraines that has been used for years, is prescribed for children in milder doses. Midrin contains an ingredient that can help boost serotonin levels. It is thought that during migraines, serotonin levels in the brain drop. The most significant treatment, as with any migraine, is getting lots of rest and sleeping in dark, quiet room.
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