I found out recently the noun 'migraine' can be countable. So it basically means I can count migraines like two or three migraines, but I don't know what is the point to count migraines. Isn't 'migraine' supposed to describe a state not a countable thing?

2 Answers 2


One may say, "I had not just one, but two migraines today." Here's an example of "migraines" used by a fairly well-regarded website: https://www.webmd.com/migraines-headaches/guide/tyramine-and-migraines#1

A migraine is a condition, like a cold ("I've had three colds this winter!"), an infection, or pneumonia. It is interesting that one can have two migraines, two colds (just not two of either condition at the same time), or two infections (which you can have two of at once) but you may not have "two pneumonias". One may have suffered from two bouts of pneumonia, or two cases of pneumonia, but not from two 'pneumonias'.

See, http://www.whitesmoke.com/singular-plural-cases

  • Yeah, I've noticed that too. It's strange, but it may be this way because migraines and colds are common; the rest are not very common diseases. One can have two cancers if they happen to be different types of cancer or one can just say he's had two types of cancer.
    – Nick
    Dec 29, 2017 at 5:12
  • 2
    And then just to make English more difficult for learners, you can have two cancerous tumors that are caused by one or by two types of cancer. It's enough to give a person migraines. :)
    – Allen S.
    Dec 29, 2017 at 5:23
  • Yeah, that's about right. I have one now from all of this grammar that I've had to try to explain. It's like being back in high school.
    – Nick
    Dec 29, 2017 at 5:25

No, it can be counted.

I've had three migraines this past week.

It does describe a state, but the state can be counted because migraines go away and come back, so there are multiple forms of it.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .