Migraine in patients with Patent Foramen Ovale: is there a link?

Author(s): Federico Cacciapuoti, Fulvio Cacciapuoti

Background: PFO is a hole between right and left atrium, that is normally present in human fetus, but that sometimes persists in adulthood. Migraine is a neurological disorder frequent in adult patients having Patent Foramen Ovale (PFO). Methods and Results: A variety of clinical manifestations, such as migraine (with or without aura), TIA or cryptogenetic stroke can be present in adult patients with PFO persistence. Echographic findings for diagnosis and percutaneous closure with an Amplazer or other devices for migraine improvement were described. Nevertheless, while some studies report a significant improvement of migraine after PFO closure, other trials refer uncertain or negative results on migraine symptoms after the placement of Amplazer or other devices inducing PFO closure. Conclusion: These uncertain results indicate the relationship between PFO and migraine not is clear and the evidences obtained till now testify both for causal or casual account between two events.