Migraine arteries – proof and measurement vs theory and fantasy

There is much debate about which arteries in the head face and neck are responsible for migraine pain in many sufferers. This paper by Prof EH Spierings, Department of Neurology, Harvard Medical School clears it up.

The debate has centered around whether it is the arteries inside the brain that dilate and cause migraine pain, or is it the arteries outside of the brain, outside of the skull, and just under the skin of the scalp?

The reason the debate has raged is that many of the most effective migraine drugs are not pain killers at all, rather they are vaso-constrictors. A vaso-constrictor has a very specific action in the body in that it causes certain arteries to constrict. We know this, quite simply because we can measure it. And we can measure it repeatedly, and the measurements are always pretty similar, decade after decade, in the country after country, from trial to trial, and in both men and women. No measurements have even shown otherwise.

Aside from a fair proportion of migraine sufferers pressing on these arteries and experiencing pain relief since the dawn of human evolution, as though that wasn’t enough of a clue, the arteries were first studied in Ernest by a famous researcher called Harold Wolff, back in the 1950s. Medical students today are still taught migraine from the book called “Wolff’s Headache” but pharmaceutical company agents purchased rights to the book and have long since deleted all of Wolff’s data. That is the subject of another story.

Why then has there been a debate over which arteries are involved in migraine pain given the consistency of the measurements sounds like the stuff of conspiracy theories. It isn’t though. It’s just science crime.

The measurements have only ever been performed on the arteries outside of the skull under the scalp. No measurements have ever been performed on the arteries inside the brain until a young researcher by the name of Schoonman finally measured them in 2008 and found they have no involvement in migraine what so ever.

No measurements what so ever for the action of vaso-constrictors on the arteries inside the brain exist at all. In fact, the most popular and effective vast-constrictors, known as “triptans” can’t even enter the brain at all because they can not cross the blood-brain barrier.

So why has the debate raged? The answer sadly is that those involved in science crime are being paid to expand the size of the pharmaceutical company’s markets. Their names are primarily Peter Goadsby, Jess Olesen, Steven Silberstene, and many others.

This study we are reviewing lays out all the measurements that have been done on the arteries outside the brain, and outside of the skull, just under the skin of the scalp. Patients should look at diagrams of these arteries, get their hands onto their heads, and begin the age-old process of self-diagnosis. It’s free!

You can read the original published migraine artery paper at this link: Role of the Extracranial Arteries in Migraine Headache: A Review

  • “The exact mechanism of how the perivascular trigeminal nerve terminals are stimulated is not completely known, but evidence suggests that local transmitters, such as calcitonin gene related peptide, are involved.”
  • ” In this article, the evidence is presented to support the view that in certain patients, the pain of the migraine headache originates in the extracranial arteries

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