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Author: Markus Dahlem and Klaus Podoll 23. February 2006
Edited by: Markus Dahlem and Klaus Podoll

Readers' Feedback


"'migraine-aura.org'?!? Omigosh, I never thought I'd see the day. Thank you ... So .... that's it, I think my work is done here. I'm kidding. Seriously now: I really don't want your comment to get buried in another sea of comments! The next time I get an SS attack I think I'll start a new thread and feature your link in the body of the post so people won't miss it? The funniest part of your site is this: Etiology (the cause of a disease) [PENDING] ...ha ha. The suspense is killing me! - When that page gets filled in, that will be HUGE news for all of us? Again, thank you Dr. Podoll for sending the link over, it's quite amazing."

(Edith Frost's Website, June 4, 2004)

"Please know how much I appreciate your kind attention to the issue of migraine aura. I never thought I'd live to see the day that describing visual and other sensory disturbances could be discussed openly and without shame. 'I know this sounds crazy but...' is such a heavy load to carry."

(Ina Rubloff, Email to Klaus Podoll, June 7, 2004)

"I think the website is coming along nicely, and I am delighted to be a part of this 'outlet' for creative migraine sufferers."

(Peter Gachot, Email to Klaus Podoll, July 7, 2004)

"I have put together a short survey of my life as a migraineur with the Lilliputians as well. I have looked at your website and am fascinated, I must say. The art connection is particularly interesting to me, and I have long wondered about the neurological links to both painting and writing. I have long felt that my neurological vulnerabilities can't be separated from my personality or from my work. I am also attaching an autobiographical piece that deals in part with my migraine experiences... I am delighted to be a part of your remarkable work. Sincerely, Siri Hustvedt"

(Siri Hustvedt, Email to Klaus Podoll, July 23, 2004)

"It is very interesting what you are doing. Thank you."

(Christine LeBlanc, Email to Klaus Podoll, August 27, 2004)

"Your site is most interesting."

(Sherry Miller Hocking, Experimental Television Center, Newark Valley NY, Email to Klaus Podoll, August 27, 2004)

"I was very excited to find your information 'Migraine Art on the Internet' on the web yesterday. I am a part-time fine art student in my 4th out of 5 years. About 18 months ago I decided to embrace my migraine instead of fighting it and to base my art practice on it. Since then my results have been good & I am also about to start on thesis on Migraine Art. Part of my excitement was finding a list of contemporary artists, because before I could not seem to get beyond van Gogh (& I see from your writings that this has not been proved anyway)."

(Teresa Habberfield, Email to Klaus Podoll, December 9, 2004)

"I received an email this morning from Klaus Podoll, an MD at the Clinic for Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, University Hospital, Aachen, Germany. He is doing research on symptoms and migraine art. We had a fascinating communication, culminating in a questionnaire designed to explore the relationships between migraine experiences and art-making activities, used for the scientific study which accompanies the project of building up a Migraine Art website. He is including some of my comments and reflections upon the creative process involved in my paintings, together with images of 'Triumph of the Human Spirit' and 'Vertigo,' both related to the migraine headaches I experience from time-to-time."

(Merlin Emrys, artist's website, February 5, 2005)

"Your website looks great. I look forward to seeing further developments."

(Sarah L. Williamson, Email to Klaus Podoll, February 15, 2005)

"I checked out your website, and I am really interested in your research. The relationship between migraines and the creative process is definitely worthy of investigation."

(Terry Cuddy, Email to Klaus Podoll, February 23, 2005)

"One of my cartoons appears on this site: http://www.migraine-aura.org/EN/Linda_Causey.html. I'm proud that my work is listed among serious artists."

(Toonhead, A Perfect World, March 28, 2005)

"I have looked at my revised webpage on www.migraine-aura.org and am well impressed, as I am by the whole site. The Migraine Art section contributes greatly to the understanding of migraine as well as making the site more dynamic − well done."

(J.J. Ignatius Brennan, Email to Klaus Podoll, April 7, 2005)

"Hi, my name is Melanie van Winkle. I found my art on the migraine art website. I had never heard of such a thing, and was just e-mailing that yes, I have migraines, and yes, I did that photo when I was having one. There are other pieces I have done with a migraine. I never thought of a connection between the headaches and the art being a huge deal, so I was surprised to find my art on the website. Weird."

(Melanie van Winkle, Email to Klaus Podoll, May 23, 2005)

"I just want to let you know that contact with you, with your site, has been enlightening, educating, and fun."

(Jayne d'Arcy, Email to Klaus Podoll, June 4, 2005)

"I think your site is great; I hope it helps a lot of people!"

(Joyce S., Email to Klaus Podoll, June 9, 2005)

"I have visited you site and found it to be extremely interesting, educational and enlightening. I consider your use of my material a compliment; thank you!"

(S. Leigh Marin, Email to Klaus Podoll, June 11, 2005)

"I have found your website very useful and am grateful for it as it is the best site I have found on persistent migraine aura ... Thanks for all your work!"

(Sofia Greene, Email to Klaus Podoll, June 16, 2005)

"Of course you can reproduce my painting, if there is anything else I can do for your organization, just ask. And thank you for ... the great work."

(Jacobo Bautista Reymundo, Email to Klaus Podoll, July 11, 2005)

"I thoroughly enjoyed touring your website. I'm fascinated with the information and images that you presented and will need to spend more time absorbing the information."

(Kate DeWitt, Email to Klaus Podoll, July 18, 2005)

"I have seen your website and am impressed by the range and thoroughness of the information you have collected. Thank you for sharing this material with such a wide audience. I wish you every success with this project."

(Randy M. Vick, MS, ATR-BC, LCPC, Chair - Art Therapy, School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Email to Klaus Podoll, July 30, 2005)

"Your website is very well constructed and interesting! I am amazed that there are so many artists out there who have rendered an expression of their migraines!"

(Roland Koch, Email to Klaus Podoll, July 30, 2005)

"I have one Poem that I would like for you to consider for your web page. It was written during a migraine and I find very apropos to my pain...

The Monster Within

There is this monster I cannot see
He lurks deep within inside of me
I know he's there, hiding deep
Waiting, watching without a peep
Sometimes I feel him, creeping inside
Stirring like an ocean tide
And I wonder is this the day
Or will he simply go away
There is this monster I cannot see
Waiting to be set free
The pain he will unleash I know
Will only steadily continue to grow
Until the moment when he's released
With each passing moment the pains increased
There is this monster inside of me
Please oh please just set me free

Sincerely, Shiela Stewart"

(Shiela Stewart, Email to Klaus Podoll, October 21, 2005)

"Best wishes for your project."

(Peter Bryenton, Email to Klaus Podoll, October
23, 2005)

"Actually, I'm being inspired by you & your Migraine Aura website, to keep a notebook of any migraine related (or even possibly migraine related) events, dreams, and the migraines themselves. I think maybe if I document it, it'll feel less overwhelming & random. I just need a small notebook I can carry with me, to get started!"

(Mella Wyrden, Livejournal for Support Group for Migraine Sufferers, Subject: migraine-o-rama, October 27, 2005)

"I searched on the web for information and your website was the first one that I came across. You can imagine my surprise when I saw the images that others has painted that are so similar to my experience. Thank you for creating a place where people can express themselves through art. It is incredibly helpful to see the similarities between the artwork and certainly helped me to feel like I was not going insane."

(Stephanie D., Email to Klaus Podoll, February 6, 2006) [more]

"I'm just getting my head around Adobe Photoshop, and am hoping to make some pictures for the site as well. Seems as if one could recreate the whole experience of all our vision problems in Adobe. When I first realised I was having classic migraines I was really blown away by the fact that I was seeing zig-zags which led me to believe that geometry is part of brain's chemistry. I had thought that we (humans) had invented geometry, but I think we just use what is hard-wired in our brains. So it is interesting that Adobe Photoshop seems to be an attempt to splice our brains and take vision apart (all in a very mechanical way). Unfortunately and fortunately for us aura status sufferes, we do not need Adobe Photoshop to break down vision into all its parts. Just a thought."

(Sofia Greene, Email to Klaus Podoll, February 24, 2006)

"Thank you for asking to use my image! You may certainly reproduce it. Your site appears to be very organized and I'm grateful for the attention given not only to all migraine sufferers, but those of use who use our art as an outlet for them."

(Sarah Collins, Email to Klaus Podoll, March 28, 2007)


Entry to Migraine Art contest: Visual disturbances. © 2007 Migraine Action Association and Boehringer Ingelheim

"I just wanted to say thank-you for your website! My 10 year old has been a migraine sufferer for years but recently became very scared and afraid thinking he had seen a 'real' ghost! We were able to look on your website and he found pictures of migraine aura art and realized that was what he had seen - a prodromal aura.

When I could see and understand just what he was seeing, I could understand his fear. He had never had a visual aura before and we just were not prepared. This picture is similar to what he was seeing and indeed it could seem like a 'ghost' to a ten-year old boy, shimmery sheets! After many sleepless and frightened nights, my son is doing fine and back to sleeping soundly in his own bed. Just had to write and say thanks. I bet you never thought that your website would have this type of impact! Many, many thanks to you! Fondly, The Hancock Family"

(The Hancock Family, Email to Klaus Podoll, May 8, 2005)


"I will certainly link my website to yours! It looks like an interesting and useful project and will help remind some readers that there are many strange 'aliens' already among us."

(Marvin Minsky, Email to Klaus Podoll, July 8, 2004)

"Your website looks very useful."

(Anjan Chatterjee, Email to Klaus Podoll, September 21, 2004)

"On the other hand, your web[site] about migraine with aura is fantastic."

(David Ezpelata, Email to Klaus Podoll, September 21, 2004)

"Please be assured of my moral support for your much needed initiative!"

(Peter van Vugt, Email to Klaus Podoll, January 19, 2005)

"I think the idea of knowing more about medical conditions is quite important and your web site very helpful to people along those lines."

(James A. Reggia, Email to Markus Dahlem, January 28, 2005)

"Your site is informative, interesting, and graphically pleasing. It should be an excellent resource for doctors and patients."

(David C. Haas, Email to Klaus Podoll, April 23, 2005)

"I am enjoying the website."

(David T. Bradford, Email to Klaus Podoll, May 30, 2005)

"Congratulations on the website. I intend to spend some more time there."

(David T. Bradford, Email to Klaus Podoll, June 4, 2005)

"Do you know the paintings of American artist CHARLES BURCHFIELD. He has obvious fortification spectra and related features in his paintings. He was a somewhat major painter during he early 20th century. You may want to add him to your list, if you have not done so already."

(David T. Bradford, Email to Klaus Podoll, June 16, 2005)

"Some of my clinicians have meanwhile visited the website, too - with fun and interest."

(Peter Senn, Department of Ophthalmology, Kantonsspital Luzern, Switzerland, Letter to Klaus Podoll, July 12, 2005)

"A fascinating website discussing and illustrating the aura of migraine headache."

(Richmond Eye Associates, August 12, 2005)

"First of all, I would like to applaud you on the migraine website, it has proven to be a useful resource!"

(Coty Gonzales, Graduate Student Behavioral Neuroscience, Email to Markus Dahlem, September 19, 2005)

"The painting (www.visions-of-science.co.uk/winners2005/win-23.htm) does a very nice job of depicting the broken color appearance of the migraine visual aura, though it does not capture the crescent shape of the scotoma or the scintillating effect.

The best depictions of the crescent I've found are at www.migraine-aura.org/EN/Visual_Loss.html (scroll down to see the many images). If anyone knows of better ones or other great material on the Web about migraines please let me know and we can add them to the list of migraine resources (www.simulconsult.com/resources/c0149931.html) associated with our SimulConsult Neurological Syndromes diagnostic software.

The aura depictions are great for showing to patients to obtain a history of a visual aura. It would be even better if there were a good animation showing the scintillating of the scotoma."

(Michael Segal MD PhD, Child Neuro Mailing List, Subject: Migraine visual aura painting wins international photography/art contest, October 24, 2005)

"Your site is excellent; I particularly like the images on http://www.migraine-aura.org/EN/Visual_Loss.html... I posted something about your site to the listserv going to 1500 pediatric neurologists. You have a great collection of material. Keep up the terrific work... Ideally a doctor should let all migraine patients (and artists) know about material such as your site."

(Michael Segal MD PhD , Email to Markus Dahlem and Klaus Podoll, October 24, 2005)

"Your webpage looks interesting and I would like to link to it from our website. I would like to look at your website content in more detail and will get back to you in a few weeks..."

(Grant T. Liu, MD, Professor of Neurology and Ophthalmology, Neuro-ophthalmology, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia)

Other readers

"I was approached by Dr. Klaus Podoll about using one of my 'stories' on a website he is involved with. I checked out the site and thought others might be interested in the site. It deals with migraine aura and art. Some pages are still in progress but there is some good information and links."

(Joe Seagull, Newsgroups: alt.support.headaches.migraine, Subject: Migraine art website, August 11, 2004)

"I was able to take a look at the 'Symptoms' section - looks like it's off to a great start! I was also not aware that you had featured the art from SM Musgrave [from Ronda's Migraine Page]. Thanks for pointing that out. It was interesting to read the history behind the image."

(Ronda Solberg, Email to Klaus Podoll, January 26, 2005)

"You can look at some nice aura-arts and more here: http://www.migraine-aura.org/EN/"

(Luz, AskShelley.com Forum, Subject: A new symptom, March 23, 2005)

"Here is a site I found useful, especially with all of the strange perceptual stuff: http://www.migraine-aura.org/EN/"

(Sunnybluesky, Brain Talk Communities, March 30, 2005)

"How about William Blake with his zigzags? e.g. the Book of Job (1825) black & white illustrations... JS, A bemused admirer of my own aura (better than drugs!)"

(JS, Email to Markus Dahlem, March 30, 2005)

"The first person you quote on your website from the internet on forced reminiscence is me. I would be happy to speak with you about it, and even happier to hear of others with similar experiences other than those I have already encountered online."

(Simon Marwood, Email to Klaus Podoll, April 5, 2005)

"I want to thank you for your website on migraine aura. Reading the various descriptions of the different types of auras, I can see that there are other things that I have experienced in my lifetime of migraines that I would not have considered to be aura... One of my employees also suffers from migraines and has found the migraine aura website to be a relief. Being a migraine sufferer often means suffering alone, as you feel as if no one shares your experience. Sites like the migraine aura site go a long way to saying 'you are not alone' to us... Thank you, Robert"

(Robert S., Email to Klaus Podoll, April 18, 2004)

"Hello Gentlemen, I just wanted to say a big thank you for the website migraine-aura.org which I discovered only today... The stories and examples you have included in the website, people's auras in their own words, has almost reduced me to tears. I feel incredibly relieved. It explains so much to me. I see myself in their words. Vielen Dank aus Australien, Irene Schymitzek"

(Irene Schymitzek, Email to Markus Dahlem and Klaus Podoll, May 6, 2005)

"What a relief to know that I'm not the only one with this problem. I live in a smalll town and our only neurologist hasn't seen alot of migraine symptoms like mine... Thanks for this site... It's comforting to know that others go through this too."

(Tammy S., Email to Klaus Podoll, May 19, 2005)

"De website van de Duitse Migraine Aura Foundation is een prachtige website. De site geeft allerlei achtergrond en gelieerde informatie. Variërend van lijsten met beroemde schilders die aan hoofdpijn lijden via muziek en literatuur naar kunst."

(Hoofdpijn-PCN Nederland, June 16, 2005)

"Great site, by the way! This is a much-needed service to the migraine community. Thanks for the work you are putting into http://www.migraine-aura.org."

(Catherine Yronwode, Newsgroups: alt.support.headaches.migraine, Subject: What form do auras take?, July 1, 2005)

"'Artists are keen observers,' says Dr. Klaus Podoll of University Hospital in Aachen, Germany, 'and we owe to them some of the most interesting descriptions of the sometimes very weird migraine aura symptoms, some of which have only rarely been studied in the medical literature.' ... More information about famous migraineurs is available at the Web sites of MAGNUM and ... Migraine Aura Foundation."

(Ian Hodder, Celebrities and migraine, lost webpage at MSMBC Website, July 3, 2005)

"Vi propongo un sito sull'emicrania, interessante, per coloro le cui problematiche visive non si limitano alle miodesiopsie: http://www.migraine-aura.org/EN/Symptoms.html. Il sito è in Inglese. Come sempre, e come sempre gestito anche da Medici Italiani scappati dal Bel Paese alla velocità della luce. Un saluto a tutti!"

(Conan, Vitreo.it Forum, Subject: piccolo flash, July 8, 2005)

"In an attempt to show friends and family what I mean by 'aura' or 'going blind' when I get my migraine, I found some amazing migraine art online. Does anyone in the community do migraine art? Or have any favorite pictures? What do you guys think of migraine art? ... I'm glad some people can use migraines to create something. Unfortunately I am so inept at art that I am doomed to suffer without any creative benefits."

(athenadax , Livejournal for Support Group for Migraine Sufferers, Subject: migraine art, July 11, 2005)

"I wanted to take a moment to say that this is the best site that I have located regarding migraines. The information about the varied symptoms defines what happens to sufferers, including myself, better than all the other sites that provide only basic information. Thank you for its creation."

(Rhonda L. Morris, Director of Administration, Make-A-Wish Foundation® of Northern West Virginia, Email to Klaus Podoll, July 14, 2005)

"This website was very helpful; please keep it going for all of 'us'! ... Maybe this site will benefit future generations; keep it going!"

(Sara S., Emails to Klaus Podoll, July 14-15, 2005)

"Anyway, I saw your website and it looks very impressive, it's certainly a comfort to know that there are people like you who are making the effort to research more about migraine and increasing awareness of the public."

(Lan Nihua, Email to Klaus Podoll, August 2, 2005)

"... an organized website dedicated to migraine auras, complete with various artwork about and inspired by the phenomenon..."

(XSarenkaX, halfbakery Migraine Visual Aura Simulation, August 15, 2005)

"First of all, a huge praise for the informative website. Like the other letter writers, I have not yet found anyone suffering from the same pathology, and so one starts brooding and doubting after all. The symptoms that are represented here quite exactly match mine..."

(YR, Email to Markus Dahlem, August 19, 2005)

"I have had a look at your website... and would be delighted to link to it from our new site ... I particularly liked the migraine art ... I think it is something that our readers would be very interested in..."

(Peter Murphy, Migraine Association of Ireland, Email to Markus Dahlem, August 23, 2005)

"Plaudit for your detailed information concerning migraine with aura."

(A.L. Riemer, Email to Markus Dahlem and Klaus Podoll, September 7, 2005)

"Painters and migraine. Last night I came across a website that examines depictions of migraine in art. One section lists painters commonly thought to be migraineurs but probably aren't, and artists who possibly, likely or definitely had migraine. In each category, the artists' names link to paintings influenced by auras or headaches. Some well-known painters included on the site are Pablo Picasso (probably not a migraneur), Georgia O'Keeffe (likely a migraneur), and Salvador Dali (a self-reported migraineur). Even though I don't get auras and don't recognize many of the artists, it's an interesting site to explore."

(Kerrie, The Daily Headache, Subject: Painters and migraine, September 8, 2005)

"Have you come across any information that states (or hypothesizes) that the celebrated American painter Charles Burchfield (1893-1967) had ocular migraines? It seems to me that he's the prime candidate for major artist influenced by visual auras." [See, for example, Burchfield's watercolour Decorative Landscape, Shadow (Willows on Vine Street), 1916]

(Elliott Goldberg, Email to Klaus Podoll, October 10, 2005; additions in square brackets by Klaus Podoll)

"The Migraine Aura Foundation (http://www.migraine-aura.org/EN/index.html) has a lot of interesting information about migraine auras, and a lot about basilar type migraines (or basilar artery migraines). They've compiled a significant amount of anecdotal experiences that helped me feel less alone."

"... cool website BTW!"

(~Sage, Newsgroups: alt.support.headaches.migraine, Subject: Alice in Wonderland syndrome, November 8, 2005)

(Xinc, Xinc's Domain - My Migraine Blog, Subject: Headache tonight - but still sharing info, November 13, 2005)

"The following is what appears to be an excellent web site on Visual Migraine Auras http://www.migraine-aura.org/EN/Modelling_Migraine_Aura.html Cheers, Dave"

(Dave, Board Co-Ordinator, Newsgroups: Paroxysmal Dykinesia, Subject: Visual Migraine Aura's, November 18, 2005)

Peter Adamson, Postcard to Klaus Podoll, November 28, 2005

"Dear Dr Podoll, At last I have learnt to use the internet. In my first session I looked at the Migraine Aura Foundation site. Excellent! I have referred my doctor to it - he too suffers from migraine with aura."

(Peter Adamson, Postcard to Klaus Podoll, November 28, 2005)

"Joaquin had an appointment with the neuro a little over a week ago and he gave me some info about ME that just blew me away. As we were wrapping up the appt, my husband mentioned that I'd had an MRI done recently because my migraines were becoming more frequent (1-2 a month instead of 1-2 a year). After a little chit-chat about that the neuro mentioned that he'd be interested in seeing the MRI films and asked that I bring it in next time if I remember. Then I said that I sometimes wonder if I had sz as a kid because I used to get the sensation of my tongue being huge -- literally it felt like it was the size of a car! It was the first time my husband had heard of it because I was embarassed by it (stupid, I know). Anyway, the neuro said that was from my migraines -- something called Alice in Wonderland Syndrome. I was so blown away by it. I came home and read about it and wow! it's really something. I later mentioned to my son's school nurse that the neuro had told me about some weird stuff with migraines (I didn't mention what exactly) but she said that migraines do some weird things that look like seizures. Anyway, it's all very interesting. I found lots more when I googled it but this is a good one: http://www.migraine-aura.org/EN/Alice_in_Wonderland.html. Peace, Anna"

(Anna, Epilepsy Foundation, Parents helping parents, Subject: Alice in Wonderland Syndrome, Kinda OT -- about my migraines, November 23, 2005)

"Delia Malchert - Migraine Aura Scintillating Scotoma. These are actually rather pretty as you may see on that site. I have had such attacks from time to time for at least thirty years, having one today soon after I got home from church. It lasted about twenty minutes. I note on my diary (offline now) that I had one on May 12, 2003, and I don't think I have had one since. It goes like that. Sometimes I have a few, once an episode starts; we shall see. It's OK now."

(ninglun, Lines from a Floating Life, November 20, 2005)

"For me it's like seeing through a soap bubble or a puddle of water with gazoline. I like some of your illustrations but they don't reflect the mental confusion that comes with the aura, like the impossibility to express any articulate thought both mentally and orally, as well as the partial paraesthesia of one side that feels like a temporary hemiplegy."

(R.V. Gronoff, Newsgroups: alt.support.headaches.migraine, Subject: Illustrations of migraine aura, December 12, 2005)

"Oh, please feel free! I actually found your site shortly after I had my first acephalgic migraine and made that picture. It was a great source of information for me at a time I was scared and needed a good resource, I'd love to participate."

(xjetgirlx, Livejournal for Support Group for Migraine Sufferers, Subject: Auras sans migraine, December 13, 2005)

"It was with great interest that I read the website on migraine aphasia that contained the link to your email... I do have to thank you for making the website available. It is reassuring to know that I am not the only one who has these strange aphasic episodes."

(A. Kathleen Vigil, Email to Klaus Podoll, December 17, 2005)

"Does anyone find that the 'color' works [at www.migraine-aura.org] hurt to look at? Also, do you find the black & white works tend to reflect the migraine in possibly a more realistic light? Art is many thing to many people so I'm not expecting there to be any 'right' answer, just thoughts."

(SC, Newsgroups: at.support.headaches.migraine, subject: Migraine and art, December 30, 2005; additions in square brackets by Klaus Podoll)

"Happy New Year and best of luck with your migraine website."

(Pat Raz, Email to Klaus Podoll, January 2, 2006)

"It really helped when you gave me the web sites about visual aura's: I showed them to my husband who has migraines, and he had experienced many of the visual symptoms: the persistance of objects. My daughter who has migraines that have a predominant vertigo component, has described the symptom of feeling like she's in a movie where the images are being played too slowly. That was on the aura site as well. Her vertigo is often an illusion of objects moving... Thank you for sharing and making us realize that these symptoms are 'legitimate' symptoms of migraine."

(Judy, Newsgroups: alt.support.headache.migraine, Subject: Migraine auras experienced as child, January 16, 2006)

"You have been so helpful in making me realize that the symptoms that (unfortunately) are present in myself, my daughter, my husband, are not just some weird thing unique to us, but actually common and described by others. Once you know you're not crazy, it goes a long way toward reassurance. Thanks"

(Judy, Newsgroups: alt.support.headache.migraine, Subject: Migraine auras experienced as child, January 19, 2006)

"I'm glad those sites helped. It really helped me to get Dr Podoll's input and see his web pages. I had tried researching the possibility of my problems being persistent migraine symptom online before but never discovered anything leading. There really isn't much information online about lasting migraine aura, at least not that is easy for lay people to find. I found this once because I was just typing my symptoms into google http://medhelp.org/forums/neuro/messages/32635.html. People with many of the same aura-like symptoms talking about so many possible indicated conditions and struggling to find a diagnosis. Medical limbo is such a horrible place to be, it's an awkward comfort to know that other people are there too."

(Lynsey, Newsgroups: alt.support.headache.migraine, Subject: Migraine auras experienced as child, January 19, 2006)

"Your site is so helpful: it allows people to share the
alterted perceptions that they feel without feeling like they are
crazy or alone. Thank you."

(Judy, Newsgroups: alt.support.headache.migraine, Subject: Migraine auras experienced as child, January 24, 2006)

"After reading through the migraine aura site I know I've experienced a bunch of those symptoms including the visual ones, but I haven't been keeping track of when they occur and when I get migraines."

(r monoxide, LiveJournal for Support Group for Migraine Sufferers, Subject: I guess I should introduce myself here, January 28, 2006)

"Wow! for the organization... I just want to tell you that the Migraine Aura Organization is soooo wonderful and fantastic. I love it. Thank you for sharing!!!!!"

(Caroline, Email to Markus Dahlem and Klaus Podoll, February 19, 2006)

"I haven't met any artists that deal with migraine influenced works. It seems very rare for that expression. I'm not an artist, more of an analyst who suffers horribly from migraines. Some years ago I saw some migraine art that I really identified with. It seemed to be about expressing the migraine pain, emotion, feelings, and overall despair. I'm not sure why it was appealing and though I wouldn't hang it on my wall, it certainly left me the impression that others knew exactly what I was going through. Helpful. The art that I've been reviewing in the last few years almost seems to have left that touch-point. It seems more artsy vice raw imagery. There is something missing when the works lean towards 'fine art.' I don't know if that makes sense, of course the works need to be done well, but it seems many works are just fancy renditions of shallow expression. The one's I've seen lately don't really speak to migraine trauma as much, that's what led to my question of color vs. B&W [see here].

I hope this has been something of interest. I'm having a bad migraine tonight (last 2 days too) and it's cooking me pretty good. How about a B&W fuzzy charcoal drawing of a split open head, eyes squinting and watery, with cerebral tissue spilling into a frying pan sizzling and with a hint of the clever ripping through one side of the head. Seems gross, dark, and extreme, but very much a graphical imagery of the experience (plus other dynamics of the picture). It won't hang well in the living room, but could maybe help someone who finds it and says, 'hey, that guy really knows what I'm dealing with...'

Just a thought."

(SC, Email to Klaus Podoll, February 20, 2006; see also here)

"Magnífico proyecto que se debe al entusiasta trabajo de Markus Dahlem y principalmente Klaus Podoll. La página, dirigida a médicos y pacientes, está enfocada en la migraña con aura y, especialmente, en determinados aspectos socioculturales del aura migrañosa, como su influencia directa en la creación artísica pictórica, musical y literaria."

(Sociedad Española de Neurología, December 31, 2006)

"Hello fellow migraineurs, Are any of you out there suffering migraine without pain? I have a boatload of symptoms! Nearly every one of them are on the http://www.migraine-aura.org/ website. I'm determined to be happy and at peace no matter my symptoms. I'm just curious how many out there are living with the weird 'other' symptoms that can occur with migraine. Any stories? My symptoms include auras, blind spots, déjà vu/dreamlike/amnesia episodes, auditory heightened, pain and numbness in the extremities. Many of these occur daily and have for about 6 years. I'm thrilled when I have a day or two without one of the symptoms. I recently took Aleve for a couple of weeks antiinflammatory effect. When I stopped taking it I had multiple symptoms per day. I had to start taking it again and wean myself off. Since I don't have head pain (dull ache once in awhile) with my migraines, I'm wondering if there are any meds out there that help anyone else? Thanks much!"

(Diana, MyMigraineConnection.com, February 10, 2007)

"Welcome, Diana! That's an interesting site. Somewhere there, they've quoted me about some of my Migraine symptoms. I sometimes have auditory and olfactory hallucinations during the aura phase. The most common auditory hallucination is hearing what sounds like a conversation in another room. Definitely voices, but not loud enough to make out what's being said. The olfactory hallucination I have is, fortunately, the pleasant smell of bacon frying."

(Teri Robert, MyMigraineConnection.com, February 10, 2007)

"One German artist, Delia Malchert, undertook to represent her aura’s visual hallucinations in paintings. Her migraine aura look like scotoma: points in her visual field where vision is absent or reduced. They usually begin with a small spot near or at the centre of her vision. The spot grows gradually, darkening her vision and developing a jagged, zigzag rim of black and white. The rim emits quick flashes as it rotates rapidly around the darkening center. Before long, the scintillating and darkening increase to become a temporary visual disorder that is almost like legal blindness. At that point in the aura, the center part of what she sees is very blurry. To her, the hallucinations of a migraine aura are irritating and annoying rather than entertaining, even though they are not always followed by migraine pain. She does admit, though, that they can be aesthetically pleasing."

(Anna Hart, What Does A Migraine Aura Look Like?, Ezine article, February 2, 2007)

Persistent aura sufferers

"Those of us with what we call 'VS' (visual snow/static) experience many visual problems, not just floaters. Afterimages, starbursts, trails, halos, palinopsia, etc. The condition is very similar to HPPD - except none of us have ever used hallucinogens. Why they are all connected, I couldn't tell you.

We are closely associated with www.migraine-aura.org, a site run by several doctors, who are involved in a study of persistent perception disorders. One doctor, who posts under the name 'ksomething,' calls the condition 'persistent migraine aura without infarction.' It's the closest thing we've got to a diagnosis, and I still don't think it explains all the symptoms - like why a migraine would cause my ears to ring. It just seems that for every question we answer, 10 more pop up."

(IanKC, Ezboard Tinnitus Forum, August 15, 2006)


Materials from www.migraine-aura.org are quoted in the following articles:

Blanke O. Astralreisen und außerkörperliche Erfahrungen. Nervenarzt 2005; 76 (Suppl 1): 378.
Bollig G, Undall E, Mørland T, Podoll K. Migrene og kunst. [Migraine and art. In Norwegian] Tidsskr Nor Lægeforen 2005; 125: 777-778. [PDF]
Dahlem MA, Chronicle EP. A computational perspective on migraine aura. Prog Neurobiol 2004; 74: 351-361. [PDF]
Dieguz S. De Chirico: l'art migraineux? Cerveau & Psycho 2006; (no. 13): 83-85.
Hart A. What Does A Migraine Aura Look Like? Ezine article, February 2, 2007.
Haut S. Differentiating migraine from epilepsy. Adv Std Med 2005; 5 (6E): S658-S665. [PDF]
Müller M, Senn P. Kopfschmerzen und Tauchen. Taucher Revue 2005; (no. 120): 48-51.
Podoll K. Subjektive visuelle Sensationen − Halluzinatorische Formkonstanten der Migräneaura als Schnittstelle zwischen Kunst und Neurowissenschaften. In: Könches B, Weibel P (eds). unSICHTBARes. Kunst_Wissenschaft. Benteli Verlag, Bern, 2005; 286-303.
Podoll K. Aurasehen und Migräneaura. Nervenarzt 2005; 76 Suppl 1: 377-378.
Podoll K. Migränekunst. Nervenheilkunde 2007; 26: 105.
Radat F. Migraines & migraineux. Cerveau & Psycho 2006; (no. 13): 66-69.
Wasser B. "Gewitter im Kopf". Aktuelle Behandlungsmöglichkeiten bei Migräne. CME 2005; (no. 2): 82-87.

Last modification of this page: February 23, 2007

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