From the Center for Psychological Studies, Nova Southeastern University, Ft. Lauderdale, FL (Dr. Kibler); Department of Psychology, University of Tulsa, Tulsa, OK (Dr. Rhudy); Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior, University of Mississippi Medical Center, Jackson, MS (Drs. Penzien); Elliot Hospital, Dartmouth University Medical School, Center for Sleep Evaluation, Manchester, NH (Dr. Rains); Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Mississippi Medical Center, Jackson, MS (Drs. Meeks and Bennett); and Department of Psychology, Jackson State University, Jackson, MS (Ms. Dollar).
Hormones, Menstrual Distress, and Migraine Across the Phases of the Menstrual Cycle
Article first published online: 15 SEP 2005
Headache: The Journal of Head and Face Pain
Volume 45, Issue 9, pages 1181–1189, October 2005
How to Cite
Kibler, J. L., Rhudy, J. L., Penzien, D. B., Rains, J. C., Meeks, G. R., Bennett, W. and Dollar, K. M. (2005), Hormones, Menstrual Distress, and Migraine Across the Phases of the Menstrual Cycle. Headache: The Journal of Head and Face Pain, 45: 1181–1189. doi: 10.1111/j.1526-4610.2005.00241.x
- Issue published online: 15 SEP 2005
- Article first published online: 15 SEP 2005
- Accepted for publication March 10, 2005.
- menstrual cycle;
Objective.—The primary objectives of the present study were to (1) contrast reproductive hormone levels and ratings of menstrual distress of female migraineurs with those of a control group in each menstrual cycle phase, (2) examine correlations between hormone levels and migraine frequency, severity, and migraine-related disability, and (3) examine correlations between menstrual distress and migraine frequency, severity, and migraine-related disability. A secondary objective was to evaluate the validity of a migraine disability measure modified to reflect 7-day recall.
Background.—Further controlled, prospective study is needed regarding the temporal relationships between reproductive hormones at each stage of the menstrual cycle and fluctuations in migraine activity across the cycle.
Methods.—Twenty-three women (17 with migraine, 6 control participants) completed laboratory hormone assays and measures of menstrual distress and disability at each phase of one menstrual cycle, and monitored their headache activity daily during the same cycle.
Results.—The migraine group evidenced lower premenstrual luteinizing hormone and more menstrual distress symptoms at each phase of the menstrual cycle. Hormones were associated with migraine activity and disability within cycle phases, and across phases in a time-lagged manner. Menstrual distress was associated with ovulatory phase migraine activity and with migraine-related disability across the menstrual cycle. A retrospective 7-day migraine disability measure appeared to be a consistently valid index.
Conclusions.—Both reproductive hormones and menstrually related distress appear to predict migraine activity and disability. These associations were evident not only for perimenstrual migraine, but also for migraine at each phase of the menstrual cycle.