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Eye and Vision Care

Eye Color Change with Migraines

02/18/2010

Question:

I have noticed when I get a migraine, my eyes turn green. Am I crazy, or can this really happen and what causes it if so?

Answer:

I have never heard of this reported before and I am not aware of any scientific literature that provides any medical mechanism for your observation.

Migraine headaches result from rapid constriction and dilation of blood vessels in the brain. When the tiny retinal blood vessels are also affected, it is possible that the retinal cells that control color vision become temporarily hypoxic (loss of oxygen) which could result in a short-term change of your color vision?

If your eyes return to their normal color after a migraine, then it does not sound like any permanent damage has occurred.

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Response by:

Robert D Newcomb, OD, MPH, FAAO Robert D Newcomb, OD, MPH, FAAO
Professor Emeritus of Clinical Optometry
College of Optometry
The Ohio State University