Migraine sufferers are more sensitive to odors, to the point of suffering from osmophobia. At least that is what an Italian study conducted at Aldo Moro University (Bari, Puglia) published in The Journal of Headache and Pain, on September 18, reveals.
An olfactory illusion
As a reminder, osmophobia is part of parosmias (olfactory illusion), a smell disorder linked to a medical condition, as researchers from the University of Tours point out. Literally, it refers to the fear of smells. Concretely, it causes an alteration in the perception of an existing odor, which turns out to be much stronger, that is to say that we are hypersensitive to certain scents. It can also be linked to the idea of hyperosmia (increased sensitivity).
Italian scientists have studied the prevalence of this disorder in just over 1,000 patients who suffered from migraines, between 18 and 65 years old. They did not all have the same type of migraine, some had tension headaches, some had auras, some did not, some had cluster headaches, others had chronic migraines. Everyone had to estimate their tolerance to odors based on headaches: if the patient was hypersensitive in 20% of his headaches, he was considered to be osmophobic.
A worsening factor for migraine
They noticed that 37.9% of patients (444 people) suffered from this disorder, against 726 who did not (…)
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