|Migraine with aura (classical migraine)|
|Classification and external resources|
An aura is the perceptual disturbance experienced by some migraine sufferers before a migraine headache, and the telltale sensation experienced by some people with epilepsy before a seizure. It often manifests as the perception of a strange light, an unpleasant smell or confusing thoughts or experiences.
When occurring, auras allow epileptics time to prevent injury to themselves. The time between the appearance of the aura and the migraine lasts from a few seconds up to an hour. Most people who have auras have the same type of aura every time.
Auras can also be confused with sudden onset of panic, panic attacks or anxiety attacks creating difficulties in diagnosis. The differential diagnosis of patients who experience symptoms of paresthesias, derealization, dizziness, chest pain, tremors, and palpitations can be quite challenging.
An aura sensation can include some or a combination of the following:
The specific type of sensation associated with an aura can potentially be used in an attempt to localize the focus of a seizure.
Auras share similar symptoms with strokes, but onset is more gradual with auras. Auras can last from several seconds to several minutes and can sometimes end with feelings of extreme tiredness, weakness, heart palpitation, sweating and warmth throughout one's body.