Doctors explain "complex migraine" that Kubiak suffered

Broncos: Coach Kubiak suffered 'complex migraine'
Posted at 6:44 PM, Oct 10, 2016
and last updated 2016-10-11 00:21:03-04

DENVER -- After being hospitalized following Sunday's loss, Broncos' Head Coach Gary Kubiak was diagnosed with a "complex migraine condition" that caused extreme fatigue and weakness, according to a Broncos statement.

While doctors say the term "complex migraine" is no longer used, about a third of all migraine sufferers have had a "Migraine with Aura." 

Elisa Depree, a Parker resident, has had migraines before, but nothing like what she experienced last week.

"it was like a little spot off the center of my vision that was sparkly," said Depree. "I've never had it before, so it scared me."

Her vision looked a lot like this simulation from the Mayo Clinic, ending in severe pain, disorientation and confusion.

Her doctor, Nuerologist Marius Birlea, dianosed her with a Migraine with Aura, which often has the headache pain of a migraine with additional symptoms.

"They can have vision trouble, trouble speaking, numbness or tingling on one side," said Birlea. "And it can have more complicated symptoms. They all fall under the umbrella of Migraine with Aura."

According to the National Headache Foundation, during a complicated migraine attack patients develop stroke-like symptoms with sensory and/or loss of strength of muscles. It can also result in dizziness, hearing changes and visual disturbance.

Triggers for complex migraines are the same as migraines, including stress, lack of sleep and dehydration.

The Broncos may be taking extra precautions, in part, because Kubiak's health history.

While head coach of the Texas, he collapsed during a game in 2013, suffering a Transient Ischemic Attack, or mini-stroke.

"The symptoms of a complex migraine can look a lot like the way a stroke presents," said Dr. Sharon Poisson, a neurologist with the University of Colorado Hospital. "But it's rare that a migraine is directly connected to stroke or TIA."

Unlike strokes, there is no damage to the brain and recovery is usually fast.

"Typically after a day or two, people feel recovered and back to themselves, and at that point I think they can get back to their typical activities," said Poisson.

Poisson said that most complex migraines are treated with a "headache cocktail," and if they are recurring, there is preventative medicine.

"Now, I'm not going to be afraid off it," said Depree. "When it happens again, I'll know to take some kind of preventative pain killers."

Kubiak issues statement

Please see below for a statement from Denver Broncos Head Coach Gary Kubiak:
“I’m feeling much better and am thankful for everyone’s thoughts and well-wishes. It’s tough not being there with our team this week, but I’ve got great confidence in Joe D, our coordinators and coaching staff, and all of our players.
“Greek and the medical team did an outstanding job taking care of me and getting this figured out. I’ve made a lot of positive changes health-wise in recent years and will continue to listen to doctors.
“I’ll be at home this week, resting and getting healthy, and I look forward to rejoining our team on Monday.”


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