Menopause and Migraine Headache


Menopause, the complete ending of ovulation and menstruation, does not happen in one day. Your body may undergo changes for months or years before and after this natural phenomenon. Some women do not notice any changes, except that their periods stop. About half of all women do experience slight physical or emotional changes as they progress through menopause.
Another 25% may suffer irregular heartbeat, joint pains, flushing in the upper torso, and headaches.

Estrogen Replacement Therapy
You should discuss the advantages and disadvantages of estrogen replacement therapy with your doctor. Many women going through menopause take female hormones (estrogen and progesterone or estrogen alone) to treat symptoms such as irregular or prolonged periods, osteoporosis, hot flashes, excessive sweating, vaginal dryness, or depression. While migraines tend to become less frequent as women get older, they can spontaneously increase or worsen during menopause. The drop in estrogen triggers the migraine. Migraine sufferers should realize that hormones may immediately worsen their headaches, or prolonged use may worsen them over time.