If you have migraines preceded by a visual aura (such as flashes of light or intense patterns) special precision tinted lenses may help stave off headaches. The lenses have to be custom made for every patient, according to a researcher at Michigan State University who just published results of a small study.
The research demonstrated that the specially tinted lenses helped normalize brain activity that occurs when migraine patients experience auras of patterns and light. The clinical trial included only 22 participants, 11 of whom suffered from migraines and 11 who did not.
During the study, each participant was asked to wear precision lenses. By using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) the researchers were able to monitor the effects of wearing the lenses on abnormal brain activity (known as hyper-activation) that occurs with the visual patterns associated with migraines. The results showed that the migraine patients reported 70 percent less pain when wearing the special lenses.
The study was published in the May 26, 2011 issue of Cephalalgia. Larger studies with more migraine patients are now needed to confirm the positive results seen in this small group.