January Migraine Data

Several weeks ago I posted barometric pressure trends from December along with whether or not I was sick that day.  Unfortunately, I didn’t do a good job recording barometric pressure on days that I wasn’t sick.  I did a better job in January.

If you’re new to this blog, I have frequent migraines that I believe are influenced by barometric pressure.  I think that large and/or fast changes in barometric pressure are likely the cause of most of my migraines.

Below, I present barometric pressure trends on days that I didn’t have a migraine, days that I did have a migraine, and days where I captured a switch (migraine to no migraine or no migraine to migraine).  In these graphs, barometric pressure is on the vertical axis in millibars and the time is on the horizontal axis.  The last time on the horizontal axis is the time that I captured the graph from WolframAlpha and recorded my condition.  So, for example, on January 2nd at ~10pm I didn’t have a migraine, but on January 4 at ~8am I did have a migraine.

No Migraine Days

no migraines

Barometric pressure trends on days that I did not have a migraine

The largest pressure change on days that I did not have a migraine occurred on January 2nd and was approximately 9 millibars in 6 hours, or 3 millibars every 2 hours.  The highest number of rapid, but small changes, on a single day was 9 on January 30th.

There were more days in January that I had a migraine than days that I did not.

Migraine Days


Barometric pressure trends on days when I did have a migraine

All migraine days have sharp changes, or “teeth.”  If the teeth are very small, there are lots of them.  I think this is the biggest difference between migraine & non-migraine days. But some of those teeth just aren’t very toothy – based on the graphs on no migraine days, I wouldn’t necessarily have expected to have a migraine on January 4, 9, 18, 25, or 26.

This makes it interesting to look at the 2 days in January when I captured the switch from migraine to not-migraine or vice versa.  In the graphs below, the dotted red line shows where the graphs in a row would connect.  The red circle shows the pressure change on January 6th that I believe caused my headache.



Barometric pressure trends on days when I switched from having a migraine to not having a migraine or vice versa.

What do you think? Do you see a pattern I’m missing?


  1. helen says:

    What do you do with this data? Have you found it helpful for prevention at all, or is it just nice to know what sets you off?

    • sarcozona says:

      It’s definitely nice to know what’s causing them. Otherwise I tend to blame myself – did I get enough sleep? Did I get too stressed? I should have eaten a better breakfast. Etc.

      But the real reason I’m really trying to understand the ins & outs of how pressure is related to my migraines is so that I can find a grad school in a place where I’ll have many fewer.

  2. helen says:

    Aha. I was trying to track my own triggers recently, what with the hideous uptick in post-concussive headaches I’ve been having, and then found myself wondering what to do with the fact that my worst one was on a day when the pressure increased all day. Move! …I wish. Hunker down for now, I suppose, and just be glad that they’re supposed to go away somewhere between five months ago and 2 and a half years from now.

    But moving for grad school, that makes sense. I’m glad AZ has been better than NC, and I hope there’s somewhere good with an extremely constant dry climate for you to go for the next round of school.

What do you think?

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