The aim of the present case–control study was to investigate the role of migraine as a potential risk factor for a delayed ischaemic neurological deficit (DIND) after subarachnoid haemorrhage (SAH). A telephone interview was performed in patients or their relatives to determine the prevalence of migraine. Thirty-six women aged <60 years had SAH with Hunt & Hess grade I–III and DIND (group A). This group was compared with an age-matched group of 36 female SAH patients, Hunt & Hess grade I–III without DIND (group B). The two populations were also characterized regarding hypertension, smoking, diabetes mellitus and alcohol use. A significant difference was only found for the prevalence of migraine with 47% in group A and 25% in group B (P < 0.05; odds ratio: 2.68, confidence interval: 0.99–7.29). Migraineurs revealed similar prevalences of risk factors independently of the presence of DINDs. This retrospective study suggests that women with migraine have a higher risk to develop a DIND than women without migraine.