Pelvic Pain Support Network
9,881 members3,138 posts

Menstrual Migraines

I’m posting on behalf of my long suffering sister. She has monthly menstrual migraines just like my mum used to have. Can anyone advise me if stopping her periods will stop her migraines. Once my mum had completed her menopause her migraines stopped.

Is there a particular drug that is used to stop the period in relation to this or is there a natural remedy that could help her. She is at her wits end as she is now suffering with sinus pain too. Thank you x

8 Replies
oldestnewest

Hi Delphin,

It’s a tricky one as it would most likely come under the remit of a neurologist rather than a gynaecologist as there isn’t anything wrong gynaecologically if that makes sense, they would need to find a treatment that can either be used as a preventative although these are usually used if the migraines occur for a certain number of days at least. Treatments used to treat a migraine when they start could be used first. My neurologist has said I will hopefully get better once I go through the menopause and given a long list of preventative treatments to try as I get 4 individual attacks a month each lasting 4 days each time. I have a lot of sympathy with her over this. It’s unlikely a gynaecologist/gp would use the pill as these are contraindicated in migraine although the mini pill could be used, the mirena coil or implant in the arm can be used as these only contain progesterone which is safe in migraine sufferers. Treatment that puts her in a pseudo menopause wouldn’t be used as they are for those with gynaecological conditions and can usually only be used for 6 months due to bone thinning. I have these treatments long term due to adenomyosis and nothing working at all and I mean everything. But I’m under a very good hospital team including a rheumatologist to help protect my bones. But they have done nothing for my migraines at all which helps bring home the fact they can’t/ wouldn’t be used in migraines. These can be given or supplied by your gp or sexual health clinic- it’s where I had my implant fitted to help my adenomyosis and endometriosis which it didn’t. I went to the trust that treats my endometriosis and adenomyosis so they also had access to my notes which helped but I did mention my migraines and they mentioned they might help and they come across women in their clinics with hormonal/menstrual migraines. There is a group on here which I belong to about migraines. They are the National migraine centre in London which is private. I personally haven’t attended but you might find some good advice on there. I hope this helps (a bit of a waffle) and she finds something to help.

healthunlocked.com/migraine...

Reply

Thank you so much for replying and your advice, she has recently seen a consultant neurologist and he suggested stopping her periods but she wasn’t keen, I don’t know why, I’m seeing her at the weekend so hopefully can find out why she declined this option. I have to tread carefully when it comes to my sister as she can be a bit prickly at times and when she is in that mood she won’t talk about it and even worse won’t hear what I have to say. But thank you for taking the time to reply. I’m sorry to hear you are suffering and I wish you well xxx

1 like
Reply

Hi Delphin,

I had a sister like that so I can relate to the prickly moods 😊. It might be because he suggested the mirena which a lot of people decline but when they finally give it a go find they love it. The implant though is a good alternative though - the small scar has faded and only I know it’s there. Also it’s fitted after local anaesthetic- the mirena won’t be. Mine was but only because I was having a lap for endometriosis at the same time. It’s also ideal if you forget or don’t like taking tablets daily. The only reason I can think your sister might not like that option is that one of the listed side effects is weight gain. Plenty of people don’t suffer from weight gain myself included when I tried it. I do think sometimes it’s down to poor eating habits in some of those although not necessarily everyone. All of my medications I take daily list weight gain and I’ve never once been affected. I hope your sister finds something that helps but if she’s not necessarily happy with the advice given she can via her gp request a second opinion as it doesn’t seem like much of a choice he’s given her. For me it’s a much better option to take treatment for migraine for 3-4 days or however long each attack lasts. Good luck with helping your sister and let us know how she gets on

Reply

Thank you Alaine, it’s hard for me as I live abroad so I have to pick my moments well when discussing all this with her as it’s not in person! But I’m off home on Thursday so will be seeing her Saturday for a catch-up so hope to be able to chat openly then (everything crossed).

Did the merina coil help with your migraines at all?

Reply

No nothing - but it was given to me because of the endometriosis and adenomyosis and to help stop the very heavy 3 week long period each month. But it didn’t work for this or the above. But it might help your sister- there are lots of women it helps with their periods. The neurologist I saw said even though my periods have been stopped with the zoladex (your sister wouldn’t be able to have this as it’s for use only with endometriosis, adenomyosis and fibroids usually for 6 months only) which I’ve been only long term since late 2012 with a few breaks due to nothing working to control the periods or the endometriosis and adenomyosis there is still a hormonal component affecting my migraines. It’s one of the reasons I’m skeptical stopping her periods would work. If she gets 4 days a month it seems a little heavy handed to suggest stopping her periods when there aren’t that many options except mirena, implant in the arm or mini pill. It makes more sense to take treatment when an attack starts or finding a treatment that works for her migraines. There are other migraine options including Botox which I know someone who had it and it worked for her but it’s ongoing treatment. It’s also only available once other treatments have been used. I’ve still got a few more treatments to try before Botox becomes an option for me but I won’t rule it out if needed

1 like
Reply

Hi,

I used to have mainly menstual migraines, now much reduced due to menopause. I was treated with a variety of things. I took beta blockers for a couple of years because they are meant to prevent migraines, which they did to a certain extent. I also took some special migraine medication (Maxalt Melts) which was very expensive even on prescription and didn’t really work because it would stop a migraine in its tracks only to have it come back a day later. Even when I get the occasional migraine now my preferred medication is ibuprofen but I have to be careful because of stomache issues. I also find strong black coffee with a little sugar can help.

But anyway I wanted to say you should look up Professor Anne Macgregor (Barts hospital London) who specialises in menstrual migraine. I was lucky enough to have a consultation with her once (as part of a research project she was doing). She told me at the time if my migraines didn’t improve then I should try hormone treatment (HRT and she might have mentioned a Mirena coil) - it’s a few years ago now so I don’t remember clearly. I had other health issues at the time and now luckily my migraines are much less frequent or severe. She also said she often advocates aspirin and Coca Cola for migraine and said my use of coffee probably had a similar effect to coca cola.

I hope you find something useful for your sister.

Best wishes.

1 like
Reply

Prof Anne Macgregor has unfortunately retired. Which is s shame but she has written a very short but concise book for patients on migraines. It was one of those line of books that were written on different health conditions by different specialists. Very handy for using when having consultations with GPs or neurologists. It covers all the different types of migraines and treatments so might be worth your sister having a look for Delphin I remember having a brief look in WHSmiths and I remember it being about £7 so not expensive and not overly medical so suitable for everyone. I’m sure it would be available on Amazon

Reply

Thank you for taking the time to respond, I will pass this on to my sister. Xxx

Reply

You may also like...