Agonizing abdominal cramps, lower back pain, rollercoaster mood swings; these are just a few of the wonderful gifts “Aunt Flow” brings on her monthly visit. As if these ailments aren’t bad enough, many women also find their menstrual cycle is accompanied by debilitating migraines. Dr. Traci Purath, a leading Wisconsin migraine headache neurologist, has examined this very circumstance and found there is a direct relationship between menstruation and migraines.
It’s estimated at least 70% of migraine sufferers are women. Over half of these women report their migraines to be related to their monthly cycle. Research shows this is due to fluctuating levels of the female hormone, estrogen.
Each month, a woman’s body repeats a pattern of events all regulated by hormones. Levels of estrogen rise over the course of weeks one and two of a woman’s menstrual cycle in preparation for ovulation. In the first half of week three, estrogen levels dip and then begin to rise again. During week four, levels of estrogen drop drastically just before the start of a woman’s period, reaching their lowest level at the cessation of flow. These varying levels of estrogen trigger the onset of crippling menstrual migraines.
Menstrual migraines are similar to regular migraines but are often worse in severity, longer lasting, and more difficult to treat. Symptoms of menstrual migraines include the following:
Check out our migraine symptoms page for more details.
Dr. Traci Purath has a patient-centric approach to migraine treatment. While many doctors simply view migraine sufferers as “another number”, Dr. Purath is dedicated to providing migraine headache relief and offers treatment plans customized to your specific needs.
Here are just a few of the successful migraine treatments Purath Headache & Neurology, S.C. has to offer:
For many women, enduring “Aunt Flow’s” imposition - complete with unwanted gifts - is a necessary evil. Thanks to Wisconsin migraine headache neurologist, Dr. Traci Purath, menstrual migraines don’t have to be a part of her visit.