A Migraine Attack Isn't a Headache - MHAM Day 26

Patient Expert
Medically Reviewed

June is Migraine and Headache Awareness Month (MHAM), complete with a social media challenge to blog or otherwise use daily prompts in social media to raise awareness. Today is day 26, and the prompt is:

"A Migraine attack isn't a headache. It can occur with NO headache at all."

It's important to raise awareness of this point because the misconception that a migraine is, "just a headache," is still quite pervasive and only serves to increase the social stigma associated with migraine disease. ("Oh, come on. Get over it. It's just a headache, after all.")

Headache can be a symptom of a migraine attack, but it's just one of many possible symptoms. Headache alone isn't sufficient for a diagnosis of migraine; there must be other symptoms present as well.

Severe and debilitating migraine attacks can occur with no headache. When this occurs, it's described as "silent" or "acephalgic" migraine.

Related content:

How to Tell a Migraine from a Headache (video)

The Words "Migraine" and "Headache" are Not Interchangeable

Anatomy of a Migraine