Last edited 03/2023 and last reviewed 03/2023


  • visual aura in migraine that is described as
    • the fortification spectra, or teichopsia
      • this phenomenon -so characteristic that it may be considered almost as pathognomonic of migraine
        • is characterized by a series of complex interlacing angulated black-and-white (less frequently colorful) flickering and scintillating lines and bars that start as a small greyish spot in the visual field, more often paracentrally, less frequently at the center, growing over time from near the center towards the periphery, leaving a scotoma behind (1)
        • also known as "fortification spectra" because of its resemblance to the fortifications of a castle or fort seen from above

      • term, Greek for "town-wall vision" based on a series of descriptions of the positive phenomena of aura being angular, like those of fortifications, dating back to a 1778 paper by the physician John Fothergill (2)


Dr Mukesh Mistry, GP with Specialist Interest in Diabetes and Lipids (March 14th 2023)


  • Hadjikhani N, Vincent M. Visual Perception in Migraine: A Narrative Review. Vision (Basel). 2021 Apr 28;5(2):20.
  • Weatherall MW. From "Transient Hemiopsia" to Migraine Aura. Vision (Basel). 2021 Nov 5;5(4):54. doi: 10.3390/vision5040054.