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Maturitas. 2012 Jan;71(1):79-82. doi: 10.1016/j.maturitas.2011.11.001. Epub 2011 Nov 23.

Perimenopausal migraine in women with vasomotor symptoms.

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Centre for Neuroscience and Trauma, Blizard Institute of Cell and Molecular Science, Barts and the London School of Medicine and Dentistry, United Kingdom.


Migraine is affected by fluctuating estrogen levels so it is not surprising that the perimenopause is a time of peak rate of change of migraine prevalence in women. Evidence supports estrogen 'withdrawal' as one of the important triggers of menstrual attacks of migraine without aura, while high levels are associated with migraine aura. This mini review addresses the issues of diagnosing migraine, treating the symptoms of migraine, and controlling co-morbid migraine and hot flushes with hormonal and non-hormonal options. Maintaining a stable estrogen environment is the most effective treatment for vasomotor symptoms and can also benefit estrogen-withdrawal migraine. Using only the lowest doses necessary to control symptoms minimizes the risk of unwanted side effects. Non-hormonal options for both conditions are limited but there is evidence of efficacy for fluoxetine and venflaxine, with less evidence for gabapentin.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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