Understanding Migraines

If you’re one of the millions of Americans (to be precise, 39 million adults and children) who suffer from migraines, you understand all too well the effect that this type of head pain can have on your life.

While there’s still some mystery surrounding migraines, the medical world has made great headway in finding effective solutions for better managing this neurological condition. 

Our team here at Pain Medicine Consultants closely follows the latest research, and we’re pleased to offer effective migraine services to our patients.

In the following, we explore what we know about migraines and how we can go about bringing you relief.

The four stages of a migraine

Migraines are a neurological condition that often includes four stages, though you may not experience all four stages, which include:


This stage often starts 24-48 hours before the head pain begins, and the symptoms usually include:

The indicators of an impending migraine attack can vary, but these are the most commonly reported signs.


This is a tricky stage that occurs in some, while not in others. Aura describes neurological side effects that can develop before a migraine attack or during one and often include:

Again, some people suffer from migraines without aura, so if these symptoms don’t apply to you, continue reading.

Migraine attack

During this stage, the pain in your head begins, which typically presents itself as throbbing on one side of your head. This pain can last up to 72 hours without treatment.


This stage is often referred to as migraine hangover, and most people feel exhausted after a migraine attack.

While researchers have been unable to identify the exact cause of migraines, we do know that 90% of migraine sufferers have a family history of the problem.

Treating migraines

If we diagnose your head pain as migraines, there are several steps we can take, depending on the severity and frequency of your migraine attacks.

If you suffer from 15 migraines a month or more, Botox® injections can go a long way toward reducing the frequency of these attacks.

We also offer occipital nerve blocks, which are effective if you experience pain in the back of your head or neck.

For those who are currently suffering from migraine pain, we offer spot medications, as well as magnesium IV infusions, which can stop migraine pain in its tracks. In fact, with regular magnesium infusions, we can also prevent migraines from developing again.

Lastly, we pay close attention to anything that might trigger your migraines so we can tailor a plan that will help you avoid these triggers in the first place.

If you want to find freedom for your migraines, please contact one of our three locations in Pleasant Hill, Pleasanton, or Corte Madera, California, to set up a consultation.

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