Changes dependent on hormones?

Basically this post is for the ladies mainly, but if anyone has any information that’d be great.

I’ve been noticing a certain trend with my flare ups. My symptoms seem to be getting worse around ~that time of the month (period, basically)~ do any ladies on here get that too? I’m assuming it has to do with all the hormone imbalances that happen right before.

Any special remedies or things that you do that help around that time of the month, extra meds maybe?


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Migraine/MAV seems very hormone related all round. I’ve made a bit of a study of MAV onset/progression through life cycle of women and can certainly see patterns. There seems to be a post partum type and a pre-puberty and post menopause type (that’s me). I went through exactly 40 years, all my fertile years, migraine-free. Within months of menopause, bingo! So although I’m past confirming your suspicions personally I think you are right. In fact I noticed alot of the younger sisterhood on here mentioning the connection. If you have a scout around the forum I’m sure you’ll soon find them. Not sure how they tackle it but no doubt they will soon be in touch to say. I think most of the migraine preventative drugs are supposed to be taken daily at the same fixed level dose and not intended to be increased to cover acute/increased symptoms. They work more long-term.
@turnitaround whilst wishing to spare yr blushes Think this thread may have been started in the wrong place.

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thank you @Onandon03!

Mine seems to be as well. Still trying to figure out exactly what is going on but I do have low iron. Have you had that checked?

I started with regular migraines immediately after I had my first child at the age of 34 and had migraines regularly for years around the time of my period. I took Imitrex for the regular migraines. Then I went thru menopause and my migraines subsided, but suddenly about 7 years after menopause the vestibular migraines started and always at the same time of the month. I did my own research and told my family doctor that I needed Effexor XR 37.5 mg for these headaches and she gave it to me. I have been MAV free for over a year now. I have on 2 occasions had a mild breakthrough MAV, but it usually only lasts an hour or 2. Mine are definitely hormonal. I should mention that my mother also had migraines.

One of my best friends from work now in her 80’s had straight forward headache type migraine from soon after birth of her first child until menopause. Never had one since. Her daughter seems as if she may repeat the pattern, and she has three daughters!

Strangely enough same best friend from work diagnosed my migraine, many years before the neurologist did and before I knew I had it. I described what I was experiencing at the time, constant vertigo, loss of balance, head pressure, D&V etc lasting up to 72 hours, and she said ‘that’s just like my migraine, only without the headache’, and we both laughed, and continued to wonder whatever it was I did have.

Interesting. My headache-type migraines started immediately after the birth of my first child and went on until menopause. About 5 years post-menopause was when I started with the vestibular part. I’m 10 years post-menopause now. I would love to go back to the regular migraines again. My mother also got migraines, but not the vestibular part.

Hello Sue
Are you still having strong MAV symtoms even 10 years post menopause? Do you take meds? I ask this as i along with others on this forum(Helen) experienced a similar pattern but im only 4 years in with 2 years post menopause…good lord…8 more years to go!!! Help!
Jo x

Hi Sue

Welcome to the unofficial ‘Womens Biz” (as you probably know there’s lots of historical WB’s posts, historical though still relevant and informative elsewhere on here), it’s just lately we seem to have a new little gang with many similarities relating to the dreaded Hormone word! There’s me, Jo, Janb off the top of my head, then there’s dizzy3 whose vestibular symptoms kicked in post partum about 9 months back. With apologies to those I’ve left out, sure there’s several more too.

So you are 10 years post menopause and Jo’s only a couple (come on Jo keep telling you you are only a baby in this MAV lark yet. Keep telling you!), and then there’s me. Let’s see it’s …er … longer than either of you …uum. Will it never end? Hence my username you will note. Retrospectively, and some time after it certainly was, I realised mine had actually kicked in just months after my last period. No medic has ever mentioned it one way or another. Read recently you might control it with HRT but you cannot have that once you hit 12 years post menopause (too high heart risk).

@jojo65, @janb - do come in here. I’ve searched, searched and searched and traced all the hormonal-type related MAV patterns (yes, one day I do intend to get a life!) and as yet been unable to find anything telling ‘us’ where we are going from here. Lots of refs to migraines getting less with age. Even saying post 65 they are extremely rare and with age intensity lessens etc, etc, but nowhere telling me they eventually stop. Or even revert to the headache type. No information at all so far. Menopause itself isnt well documented. Certainly not accurately documented. ‘Lasts a year’!! Ho! Ho! I wish. Hot flushes stop after 4-5 years max! Plus, the odd extra decade or so. My Granny was still having hot flushes (not a migraineur) at 70! I laughed when one sister-in-law told me I shouldnt be having hot flushes any more, I’m too old!

This last few months I’ve noticed the dizzies ramps up with every hot flush, it does die back but in the recent Heat Wave 10 hot flushes a day and I ended up dizzy all day too something I thought meds had under control. Reckon if ‘we’ could get rid of one the other might just go! I do so wish! Helen

You are funny Helen…i love reading your posts. I still seriously consider trying HRT but for some reason i talk myself out of it…no one will ever convince me that my MAV is NOT hormone related its just too much of a coincidence. I couldnt track exactly when menopause came into force as i had the mirena coil fitted so no periods was the norm…i actually at one point blamed it for my symptoms but realised after having it removed it wasn the culprit at all and i had gone through menopause while t was inserted. In fact my MAV ramped up even more after that…Helen im also getting hot flushes and dizzies hand n hand plus im just recoveing from my botox injections 11 days ago…ive been floored…
Its tough guys.
Jo x

Glad I made you laugh anyway. I’d always thought to see no point in HRT. Menopause is natural process, our ancestors survived it. It was years maybe nearly a decade before I made connection between MAV and menopause and had I known then what I know now, I’d have given it a go. Seemed overkill to take it ‘just’ for hot flushes but if it kept MAV away for as long as it was considered safe to take it - twelve yrs I believe, i’d have not hesitated to give it a go,

Thats my thoughts exactly!!
Jo x

Eagerly following this discussion with not much to add other than commiseration. I had headache migraines beginning with puberty that became severe during each pregnancy but resolved after childbirth. I was not much bothered by headaches throughout my 30s and 40s.

I’m 57 now, experiencing a rather late perimenopause. About 6 years ago I began having frequent migraine aura without headaches, scintillating scotoma and photophobia. That was completely new for me. That seems to have stopped, and now I’ve had VM symptoms for at least 2 years, just recently, finally figured out that all my seemingly unrelated maladies are migraine (thank you Dr Rauch@ MEEI).

I’m surprised that there is not more focus on if/how menopause is involved and what to do about it. My experience has been that doctors have a canned response that migraine often resolves AFTER menopause, but seem clueless that menopause might be the trigger for new and worsening symptoms.

Hello there
You fit into mine ( and others in our little group) to a tee!!! In my 30s and 40s life was wonderful after having migraine with aura in my teens and 20s…them BAM aged 49 i now how full blown MAV which so far has lasted 4 years. Mind you…i am well informed by Helen i’m just a baby of this MAV lark as you will be!!! :grin:
Its time, medication, lifestyle that seems to keep this beast under control…but im struggling to do that at this stage. Im not ruling out HRT.
Jo x

To be perfectly blunt, if I was still within the timeline, I’d rule it in! Pronto!. Helen

You know what Helen…i have some leave coming up i think i will make an appointment and see my GP. Ive already discussed it with a specialist and she said i could try a patch. Think i’ll bite the bullet.
Jo x

A gynae consultant friend suggested that I could have the Mirena coil fitted to see if things improved and then some strategic patches on top but that it would be a brave doctor who would do it given my migraine and MAV history (23+ years).

GP’s and consultants who I’ve seen about dizziness keep warning me that I could be in for a really awful time for the next 10-15 years or so (55 and still having regular but closer together periods, so more MAV and migraine) . Joy!

I do wish some proper research and help could be found and the role of hormones investigated and hormonal remedies trialled more. I’ve been told it’s hard for you but you can’t have HRT - wouldn’t it be dreadful if we have all had to go through this and taken myriad meds and some hormones could have sorted a lot of it?

My MAV also started a few months post partum (although I had migraines for a few years when younger) and is worse around my period and mid cycle.

Gosh and there was me complaining about tight lipped consultants who didn’t give me any information. If that’s the sort of stuff they dole out, I’m glad they kept it to themselves. They didnt happen to mention whether it would ever stop did they. Short of the Inevitable I mean. I read and researched and come up with nothing but vagaries.

Seconded. I’m 15 years in and the last 3 or 4 have been really bad. Totally life changing. Last 18 months a big improvement with meds but not ‘normal’. Its time somebody pulled their socks up and sorted it.

Have you read Dr Hain on the topic? Helen

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Thanks will read that.

I’ve been told I might be lucky and it will mostly clear up after the menopause or I could be unlucky and it’ll get worse!! This was by a woman GP specialist at the migraine clinic.

has anyone tried to resolve their issues with HRT? or are we all being offered meds? I have read that some SSRI’s seem to offer a lot of relief


That’s me. I had sick headaches til menarche, motion sickness and at menarche abdominal pains (remember wandering around with hot water bottle pressed against my tummy!) so possible abdominal migraine, all undiagnosed, uninvestigated even. Then clear as a bell, healthy as they can come, our GP’s practice actually moved location in town and it was years literally before I next booked an appointment and found out. Went to the previous location! Then, had vertigo onset just few months after what turned out to be my last period. And the attacks got longer, more severe, more often. Cleared entirely between for years and then one day the vertigo came, decided it really liked being with me and never left. 24/7 constant dizzy. Joy.

Nobody in 15 years has ever mentioned what might be causing this or that we should look for causes. For 12 years I was told ‘you have vertigo - BPPV - there’s no treatment. Nothing we can do about that. Just sit it out. Just give you anti-sickness meds so you don’t vomit to excess, dehydrate and end up taking up a precious hospital bed and send you on your way. No meds offered me until I paid to see neuro-otologist and got ‘probable MAV’ diagnosis.

If you check out historic posts on this forum under ‘womans Biz’, there’s lots on MAV and HRT. Positive and negative, Dr Hain has a good section.

Really. Relief from MAV. Might I ask where pls. Havent checked historic section for that here yet.

The more I think about MAV the more I feel there’s some additional something in each sufferer that just pushes us over the edge into this and our best bet for recovery is to find that ‘something’, and if it’s treatable, treat it. Otherwise we could wallow in this mire for eternity. We each need to learn as much as we can about our personal issues, be our own advocate and try to sort them. Helen