Reporter Serene Branson Suffered from "complex migraine" During On-air Flap: What is a Complex Migraine?

by the Left Coast Rebel

Did you see this? While reporting on the Grammys recently, L.A. reporter Serene Branson suffered from what seemed to be a stroke, on-air:

That certainly looked like Serene Branson suffered a stroke as she spoke, didn't it? Not so, says a Los Angeles doctor who treated Serene Branson.

Via. CBS News:

"Her description of the events is really entirely typical of complex migraine," said Dr. Andrew Charles, director of the Headache Research and Treatment Program in the UCLA Department of Neurology, who saw Branson this morning.

A symptom of migraine aura is "dysphasic language dysfunction," in which people know what they want to say but they can't get the words out. This is similar to aphasia, which can signal a stroke or a tumor.

"Imaging studies ruled out other kinds of problems like a stroke or primary brain event," Charles said.

Read the rest. But what exactly is a complex migraine? More from
One theory about the cause of migraine headaches is that blood vessels in the brain suddenly narrow (or spasm) and then dilate; when the blood vessels dilate, the headache develops. During the spasm phase, certain parts of the brain may receive too little blood, and this may cause the stroke-like symptoms. However, unlike a stroke, blood flow is not permanently interrupted during migraine headaches, and the neurological symptoms are nearly always temporary.

Hat-tip Google Trends


  1. I used to get migraines, inexplicably they stopped when I was 18. They are really nasty, I used to get a headache for 2 straight days, often inducing vomiting following prolonged pain. The Dr. likely diagnosed this correctly, the video is a bit disturbing.


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