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Dr. Rick
Dr. Rick, Board Certified MD
Category: Eye
Satisfied Customers: 11175
Experience:  Ophthalmology since 1994 with Retina sub-specialty interest
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My 13 year old son told me that two days ago he started seeing

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My 13 year old son told me that two days ago he started seeing a "circle" in only his right eye after he reads for awhile. He said that in the center of the circle he can't see objects, but only the color of the objects he looks at. Should I be alarmed?

Dr. Rick :

Hi I can help you today.

Dr. Rick :

Are you available to chat?

JACUSTOMER-s0touqlr- :

yes

Dr. Rick :

Is there a family history of migraines, or does he have such a history?

JACUSTOMER-s0touqlr- :

I had migraines only when pregnant. No he has never had one. He said that he doesn't get a headache after seeing the circle.

Dr. Rick :

Did he say how long these episodes last?

JACUSTOMER-s0touqlr- :

He said for "a l.ittle while", so I don't really know.

Dr. Rick :

A typical migraine headache starts with shimmering lights, often times they surround a blurry area or have dots or jaggedly lines associated with them. They tend to progressively increase in intensity and sometimes march across the visual field causing difficulty with reading. Many times this is then accompanied by nausea, irritability, sensitivity to bright lights and/or loud noises. After the onset of the lights (called scintillating scotomas), the headache typically starts and the light show tends to progressively go away.


Many people can have this migraine phenomenon without the headache; it is called an acephalgic migraine. Some people even start having these late in life, or may have had a few much earlier in life that behaved differently and haven't had any for decades and then begin to have them; this is not uncommon. A family history of migraines is often present as well.

Dr. Rick :

Episodes can start at any age, but tend to begin with the onset of puberty, although at 13 he may not have started that yet.

Dr. Rick :

This is nothing to be alarmed about. For completeness sake it wouldn't hurt for him to see an ophthalmologist for a complete eye exam,although I wouldn't expect anything abnormal to show up.

JACUSTOMER-s0touqlr- :

Yes, he has started puberty. So, when it happens should he just leave it alone until it subsides, or should he take a headache medicine?

Dr. Rick :

If he is not getting any headaches, no Rx is needed. Should he start to have frequent, bad migraines treatments are available to make them occur less frequently, to stop them once they have started and relieve the symptoms once they are in full swing.

JACUSTOMER-s0touqlr- :

Ok, thank you for your help.

Dr. Rick :

My pleasure.

Dr. Rick :

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