Idiopathic means of unknown origin, occurring spontaneously and not traceable to a direct cause.
When discussing Migraine disease and other headache disorders, probably the most common use we see of the term idiopathic is idiopathic intracranial hypertension. In this condition, The body is either producing too much cerebrospinal fluid or not processing it correctly, and the cerebrospinal fluid pressure becomes too high. The reason this happens is unknown, making it idiopathic.
You can read more about idiopathic intracranial hypertension in Pseudotumor Cerebri (IIH) - The Basics.
Teri Robert is a leading patient educator and advocate and the author of Living Well with Migraine Disease and Headaches. A co-founder of the Alliance for Headache Disorders Advocacy and the American Headache and Migraine Association, she received the National Headache Foundation’s Patient Partners Award and a Distinguished Service Award from the American Headache Society. Teri can be found on her website, and blog, Facebook, Twitter, StumbleUpon, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and Google+.