[Skip to Navigation]
Clinical Challenges
February 2000

Visual Aura: A Useful Diagnostic Tool

Author Affiliations


Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2000;126(2):233-234. doi:10.1001/archotol.126.2.233

Distinguishing between headaches of sinonasal origin and those of migraine or vascular origin remains an important challenge to rhinologists and sinus surgeons. Differentiating the 2 sources can be impossible without extensive testing, but Dr Fornadley has postulated that vision disturbances provide a primary diagnostic distinction between migraine headaches and headaches of sinonasal origin. The importance of his hypothesis is underscored by the large numbers of clinically negative CT scans performed each year on patients with migraine headaches and no underlying nasal or sinus abnormalities. Conversely, the danger of assuming that a patient has a migraine headache without further investigation into possible sinonasal disease can result in catastrophic consequences.

Add or change institution