Menstrual migraines’, or catamenial migraines, are migraines that manifest during the menstrual cycle, in the presence of changing levels of estrogen in the body. This estrogen fluctuation occurs during the luteal phase and because of this trigger, the migraine can have different qualities or characteristics than ‘traditional’ migraines that occur in both men and women (which are often triggered by levels of serotonin in the brain). Menstrual migraines can occur in the presence or absence of PMDD symptoms and may or may not be accompanied by an aura. Women who experience PMDD with migraines might benefit from a course of treatment with fluoxetine or supplemental estradiol treatment.
Talk to your doctor about treatment options that might be appropriate for you.
-Gioia Guerrieri, DO, February 25, 2019