Can Migraines Cause Fevers?

Migraines are debilitating headaches accompanied by a range of symptoms, including sensitivity to light and sound, nausea, and vomiting. While these symptoms are well-known to migraine sufferers, some individuals also report experiencing fever-like symptoms during migraine headaches. This leads to the question: Can migraines cause fevers, or is there another explanation? In this blog post, we will delve into the world of migraine headaches and fevers, exploring the potential connection between the two.

Understanding Migraines

Before we explore the possible link between migraines and fevers, it’s essential to understand what migraines are and how they typically present themselves.

Migraines are a type of headache disorder characterized by intense, throbbing pain, usually on one side of the head. These headaches are often accompanied by a variety of common symptoms but can vary from person to person, such as:

Nausea and Vomiting

Many migraine sufferers experience significant nausea, and some even vomit during an attack.

Sensitivity to Light and Sound

Bright lights and loud noises can exacerbate migraine symptoms, making sufferers seek a dark, quiet place to rest.


Some individuals experience neurological symptoms, such as visual disturbances, also known as auras, before or during a migraine attack. Auras can include flashing lights, double vision, blind spots, or zigzag patterns.

Aura-Free Migraines

Not all migraines come with auras; these are called “aura-free” or “common” migraines.

Neck Stiffness

Stiffness in the neck can contribute to discomfort and can sometimes be severe enough to worsen the overall migraine experience. 

up close of a person reading a thermometer

The Fever-Like Experience

While typical migraine symptoms are well-documented, some individuals report additional symptoms that are reminiscent of a fever occurring during their migraine episodes. These symptoms may include:

Increased Body Temperature

Some people with migraines experience a slight rise in body temperature during an attack, leading them to believe they have a fever.


Feeling unusually cold or experiencing shivers can mimic fever-like symptoms.


Excessive sweating, especially in the early stages of a migraine, can add to the perception of fever.

It’s important to note that these fever-like symptoms are not present in all migraine cases. Still, they can be concerning for those who do experience them and raise questions about whether migraines can cause fevers.

The Connection Between Migraines and Fever

The link between migraines and fevers is not straightforward, and researchers have differing views on the subject. To better understand this connection, let’s explore some possible explanations:

Inflammatory Response

One theory suggests that migraines may trigger a localized inflammatory response in the brain, which could lead to fever-like symptoms. Inflammation is often associated with an increase in body temperature, so this process may contribute to the perception of fever during migraines.                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

Hypothalamic Involvement

The hypothalamus, a small region in the brain, plays a crucial role in regulating body temperature. Some researchers believe that the hypothalamus may be involved in migraine attacks and that its dysfunction could lead to temperature fluctuations resembling a fever.

Overactive Nervous System 

Another theory proposes that an overactive autonomic nervous system, which is responsible for regulating bodily functions like heart rate and body temperature, may contribute to the fever-like symptoms experienced during migraines.

Misinterpretation of Symptoms

Sometimes, individuals may misinterpret the sensations they experience during a migraine as fever-like symptoms. For example, the sensation of intense heat or cold could result from the body’s response to the pain and discomfort associated with a migraine.

Coincidental Illness

Some individuals who experience migraines and fever-like symptoms may be fighting off an unrelated illness, such as a viral infection or a bacterial infection. In these cases, the fever-like symptoms could be unrelated to the migraine.

Seeking Medical Advice

If you experience migraines with fever-like symptoms or are concerned about your migraine attacks, it’s crucial to consult a healthcare professional. They can help you determine the cause of your symptoms and develop an appropriate management plan.

During your medical evaluation, your doctor may consider factors such as your medical history, the frequency and severity of your migraines, and any other symptoms you experience. They may also order tests to rule out other potential causes of your symptoms, such as infections.

In rare cases, migraines and fevers can occur as a result of autoimmune disorders where immune system dysfunction can trigger headaches resembling migraines and fever. If you experience migraines and headaches simultaneously, please call your doctor to be evaluated and rule out underlying medical conditions. 

We advise you to seek immediate medical attention when experiencing migraines and fevers, especially if your migraines have increased in intensity or frequency.  

Managing Migraines and Fever-Like Symptoms

Regardless of the exact cause of fever-like symptoms during migraines, finding relief from these episodes is a top priority for many individuals. Here are some strategies that may help manage both the headache and fever-like sensations:


Find a quiet, dark room where you can rest during a migraine attack. Lie down and try to relax as much as possible to ease the headache and any fever-like sensations.

Stay Hydrated 

Dehydration can exacerbate migraine symptoms, so be sure to drink plenty of fluids.

Over-the-Counter Pain Relievers

Some people find relief from mild migraine symptoms with over-the-counter pain relievers like ibuprofen or acetaminophen. However, following your doctor’s recommendations for pain relief is essential.

Prescription Medications 

For more severe or frequent migraines, your doctor may prescribe specific migraine medications to help alleviate symptoms.

Identify Triggers

Keep a migraine diary to track potential triggers for your attacks. Certain foods, stress, or hormonal changes could trigger a migraine. Identifying and avoiding triggers can help reduce the frequency and intensity of migraines.

Lifestyle Modifications

Make healthy lifestyle choices, such as exercising regularly, managing stress, and getting enough sleep, to help reduce the frequency and severity of migraines.

Migraine and Fever Relief at Altus ER

So, can migraines cause fevers? No, while there can be overlap in symptoms, seeking medical guidance is crucial if you experience migraine and fever simultaneously, as it could indicate an underlying medical condition requiring attention. Remember that most migraine episodes do not involve fever-like symptoms, but any significant change in your migraine patterns should be discussed with a healthcare professional.

In times of uncertainty, Altus ER can provide invaluable assistance. Our commitment to patient well-being ensures you receive the best care possible, especially during challenging medical emergencies. Don’t hesitate to rely on Altus ER if you’re experiencing migraines, fevers, or a combination of both to receive the necessary evaluation and treatment to ensure your health and comfort. Your well-being is of the utmost importance, and seeking timely medical care is the first step towards finding relief and managing your symptoms effectively. Find your nearest Altus ER location by visiting our website.