Comparison of self-reported cutaneous allodynia and brushing allodynia during migraine attacks

Chi Hsiang Chou, Jong Ling Fuh, Jaw Ching Wu, Shuu Jiun Wang*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


This study compares the results of brushing allodynia (BA) during migraine attacks to those of self-reported cutaneous allodynia. We recruited 100 patients (20 with chronic migraine, 80 with episodic migraine) and performed a gauzebrushing test to detect BA. A previous experience of cutaneous allodynia was queried. Seventeen patients reported having allodynia before, whereas 22 patients exhibited BA. The frequency of self-reported allodynia (12.5% vs. 35.0%, p =.040) but not BA (21.3% vs. 25.0%, p =.765) differed between patients with episodic migraine and those chronic migraine. Patients with aura (N = 8) had a higher frequency of both self-reported allodynia (62.5% vs. 12.2%, p =.003) and BA (87.5% vs. 17.6%, p <.001) than those without aura (N = 92). Some allodynia symptoms, including avoidance of washing hair, touching the head, combing hair and lying on the site of head pain, were associated with BA (all p <.05). Our study showed that BA during migraine attacks correlated well with prior allodynia symptoms. The frequencies of BA and self-reported allodynia depend on the composition of different migraine subtypes and the timing of the gauze-brushing test.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)682-685
Number of pages4
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2010


  • Aura
  • Brushing allodynia
  • Gauze-brushing test
  • Migraine
  • Self-reported allodynia


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