Do I have Migraine with Brainstem Aura?

Migraine with Brainstem Aura

Migraine with Brainstem Aura (MBA) is a type of Migraine with Aura.
Formerly called Basilar Migraine, Basilar Artery Migraine, or Basilar-type Migraine.

MBA not only includes typical migraine aura symptoms (visual symptoms, language difficulty, etc), and usually headache, but also “brainstem aura”.

Brainstem aura may include:

  • vertigo
  • dysarthria (trouble controlling speech muscles)
  • hearing impairment
  • double vision
  • decreased level of consciousness

Each symptom lasts less than an hour.
(Motor weakness is not a part of MBA)

Note:  We will be starting to work through some of the changes that will be in the new headache classification document from the International Headache Society.  One of the changes will be a name change – from basilar-type migraine to migraine with brainstem aura.  MBA is a rare type of migraine which often includes very disabling and severe types of aura.  When motor weakness is present – muscle weakness which may make it difficult to walk – the diagnosis will instead be a type of hemiplegic migraine.

The graphic above is not intended to help you make a diagnosis, but just to point you in the right direction – to better understand from your symptoms what you may be dealing with.

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