Structural differences in interictal migraine attack after epilepsy: A diffusion tensor imaging analysis

Publication date: December 2017Source:Epilepsy & Behavior, Volume 77
Author(s): Qi Huang, Xin Lv, Yushuang He, Xing Wei, Meigang Ma, Yuhan Liao, Chao Qin, Yuan Wu
ObjectivePatients with epilepsy (PWE) are more likely to suffer from migraine attack, and aberrant white matter (WM) organization may be the mechanism underlying this phenomenon. This study aimed to use diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) technique to quantify WM structural differences in PWE with interictal migraine.MethodsDiffusion tensor imaging data were acquired in 13 PWE with migraine and 12 PWE without migraine. Diffusion metrics were analyzed using tract-atlas-based spatial statistics analysis. Atlas-based and tract-based spatial statistical analyses were conducted for robustness analysis. Correlation was explored between altered DTI metrics and clinical parameters.ResultsThe main results are as follows: (i) Axonal damage plays a key role in PWE with interictal migraine. (ii) Significant diffusing alterations included higher fractional anisotropy (FA) in the fornix, higher mean diffusivity (MD) in the middle cerebellar peduncle (CP), left superior CP, and right uncinate fasciculus, and higher axial diffusivity (AD) in the middle CP and right medial lemniscus. (iii) Diffusion tensor imaging metrics has the tendency of correlation with seizure/migraine type and duration.ConclusionResults indicate that characteristic structural impairments exist in PWE with interictal migraine. Epilepsy may contribute to migraine by altering WMs in the brain stem. White matter tracts in the fornix and right uncinate fasciculus also mediate migraine after epilepsy. This finding may improve our understanding of the pathological mechanisms underlying migraine attack after epilepsy.