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Changes in retinal nerve fiber layer thickness may be the cause of post-COVID-19 headaches.

Neurological Research 2024 April 17
OBJECTIVE: The prevalence of post-COVID headaches is not low. The eye can be affected by this infection, but it is not clear yet what the relationship is between persistent headaches and the thickness of the retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) after COVID-19 infection this study aims to investigate the relationship between these subjects.

METHODS: In this retrospective study, in patients who have had a persistent headache, SD-OCT analysis of RNFL was obtained, and RNLF thickness values before and after COVID-19 infection were analyzed.

RESULTS: A total of 26 eyes from 13 patients (nine (69.2%) females, four (30.8%) males) with persistent headaches after COVID-19 infection were studied. The average age was 47,35 years for females and 63 years for males. The mean RNFL thickness of both eyes between before and after COVID-19 infection decreased, which was statistically significant.

CONCLUSION: In this study, a correlation between headache and changes in RNLF after COVID-19 infection was found. It may have wider ramifications to look into the COVID-19-associated headache phenotype of people with a history of migraines, contributing to a more comprehensive understanding of migraine pathogenesis. This relationship can provide further insight into this infection.

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