Search For A Cure
Scientific Breakthroughs & Caregiver Tips
How Is Migraine Disorder Diagnosed?
To diagnose migraines, doctors look for a pattern of symptoms, risk factors, and family history. Because the symptoms of migraines often closely resemble the symptoms of other severe neurological problems, your doctor will likely focus on ruling out those other problems before moving on to treatment for migraines.
Diagnostic steps may include:
- A physical exam. This exam will be aimed at ruling out specific physical conditions that could be causing the symptoms.
- Blood and laboratory tests. These tests will look at the patient’s blood chemistry for issues that may be causing the symptoms.
- MRI scans. An MRI uses a strong magnetic field to create images of a patient’s brain and circulatory system. A doctor may call for an MRI scan in order to rule out other problems that may be causing your headaches if they are especially severe or they are getting worse.
- CT scans. A CT scan uses X-rays to create images of your brain. Again, your doctor may prescribe a CT scan to look for other problems–such as a tumor, bleeding, or infection–that could be causing your symptoms.
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