• Written By: Michael G. Haas, MD
    Comprehensive Ophthalmology

    This prospective study found that choroidal thickness increases significantly in migraine patients during attacks. This finding can be valuable in understanding the pathophysiology of migraine and its association with glaucoma.

    The authors believe this is the first study to investigate choroidal thickness in migraine patients. They used enhanced-depth OCT to compare choroidal thickness at various locations in 29 migraine patients during the peak of attacks and during pain-free intervals.

    In patients with unilateral headaches, choroidal thickness was significantly increased compare to base levels only in eyes on the headache side (P < 0.001). In patients with bilateral headaches, choroidal thickness was increased at five out of the seven measured points in right eyes (P < 0.05) and at all seven measured points in left eyes (P < 0.05).

    The authors write that these findings seem to be in accordance with most of the theories describing the pathophysiology of migraine. Increased choroidal thickness during the migraine attack period may reflect an alteration of ocular circulation or may be related to autonomic reflexes.

    They note that this study is only a preliminary report. Larger studies investigating the neurovascular structures of the eye in migraine patients may provide further insights into both the pathogenesis of migraine and the association between migraine and glaucoma.