Psychological aspects of migraine in childhood.

G. Lanzi, U. Balottin, N. Gamba, E. Fazzi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Experimental data indicate that certain unconscious emotions cause modifications of the brain stem neurotransmitters, inducing neurohumoral and vascular changes which underlie the migraine attack in biologically predisposed subjects. The present study investigates, with patient interviews, psychodiagnostic tests (Rorschach, Blacky pictures, Thematic Apperception test, drawings, Wechsler) and parental interviews in 20 pediatric migraine subjects. In 85% of the cases, a condition of repressed anger preceding the attack is seen. In 40% of the subjects, events such as a death in the family, separations, angry quarrels among parents, and scholastic problems, are seen just before onset of the disease. In conclusion, migraine may be considered a psychosomatic disorder, with the phenomenon of pain as a somatic extrinsication of psychological distress.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)218-220
Number of pages3
Volume3 Suppl 1
Publication statusPublished - Aug 1983

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology


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