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September 12, 1999

Aches and Pains

Question from Cincinnati, Ohio, USA:

My daughter is 11 1/2 and had diabetes for 9 1/2 years. Twice within the past month she has complained of a severe headache and I have tested her blood sugar and she was somewhat low. Shortly thereafter she has complained of nausea and basically slept off and on until the nausea has passed and her blood sugars have stabilized (by shutting off her insulin pump). Anyway, is it possible that these are migraine headaches? How can I determine this? Are migraines common with low blood sugars during puberty? She has previously not complained of nausea when low with an accompanying headache.

Answer:

Good question. Migraines can present during puberty. Is there light sensitivity? Any aura (a sensation prior to the headache): flashing lights, strange vision, strange sensation? The telling moment will be a headache without a low, I’m afraid.

LD