They found a part of the cortex is thicker than in people who are free from the debilitating headaches. What is not clear is whether the difference causes, or is the result of migraine attacks. The neurology study, by Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, suggests the changes may make patients hyper-sensitive to pain in general.
Previous research has shown that the cortex becomes thinner with neurological disorders such as multiple sclerosis and Alzheimer's disease. Part of the cortex, although not the somatosensory area, is also known to thicken with extensive motor training and learning.