Women with #migraines experience more headaches during the #menopausal transition

I am not sure why they needed a study on this when it was already established but then again neuros love their studies... and often do not believe a damn thing without them. So a good thing then.

So here we go with the obvious:

“Our study is the first to actually show that migraines tend to worsen during the peri-menopause and early menopause years,” said Vincent T. Martin, MD,  co-director of the University of Cincinnati Headache and Facial Pain Program.

Generally, women hit the peri-menopause years in their 40s, when their menstrual periods become irregular or more frequent. When periods stop for 12 consecutive months, they’ve hit menopause.

“In fact, we found that headaches worsen by about 50 to 60 percent during those time periods,” Martin said.  WCPO

If you suffer from frequent migraines during peri-menopause, new treatments could be on the horizon.
Dr. Martin pinponts a few ideas to blunt the pain caused by those falling estrogen levels:
  • Oral contraceptives taken continuously
  • Wear an estrogen patch around the menstrual period for about 7-10 days
  • Consider hormone replacement therapy, with an estrogen or progesterone-like medication

You can read more about the study itself in Science Daily.
"Given that migraines tend to worsen during menstruation, it may seem paradoxical that when periods become irregular during the peri-menopause or absent during menopause that headache become more frequent," said Richard B. Lipton, M.D., professor of Neurology and director of the Montefiore Headache Center at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. "We believe that both declining estrogen levels that occur at the time of menstruation as well as low estrogen levels that are encountered during the menopause are triggers of migraine in some women," he said.
"These results validate the belief by many women that their headaches worsen during the transition into menopause," Dr. Martin said. "We hope that our work spurs researchers to develop novel treatments for migraine during this time period given that many of the headaches encountered are thought to be hormonally triggered." ScienceDaily


It is important they establish these sorts of things with studies. Set it down so that a neuro can read that and understand when a patient comes into his office who is 45 or older with worsening migraines the cause of them. Because that is a significant increase in pain. Also we want to have established ways to help women with this increase in migraines related to the hormonal cycle.

Personally this freaks me out. I am trying to improve my migraines so that I can return to work in some fashion. And then, what? Bam peri-menopause will happen somewhere in about five or eight years and I will be back where I started from... or worse. And there can definitely be worse with hormonal migraines, since they are in fact my worst migraines as is and went completely nuts when I was working. So that is disturbing to think about for sure. That is a long stretch of time there.
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