It is not claimed that this paper will present a complete explanation of migraine; it is hoped, however, that it will start a suggestive line of thought bearing on a pathogeny which can be at the best only hypothetical.
The form of migraine to which I shall confine myself is the every-day type, the variety which I have found occurring in complete form in 17 per cent. of healthy young adults, and in incomplete form in many more. It reaches its greatest intensity in early life and generally disappears after middle life. It is often preceded by scotomata, by temporary aphasia and numbness, loss of memory, signs of mental incapacity and confusion, and even possibly, as Gowers suggests, by the peculiar feeling that the present is a reproduction of the past, the feeling thus described by Coleridge:
Oft o'er my brain does that strong fancy roll Which makes the present