Migraines and Birth Control Increase Stroke Risk

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Women who get migraines with aura and also use birth control may be at a significantly higher risk of suffering stroke from blood clots than migraine patients who don’t use hormonal contraceptives, according to a recently released study. Here are some of the details of the Brigham and Women’s Hospital report on migraines with aura.

Migraines and Birth Control Increase Stroke Risk- Migravent

To treat hormonal migraines, look elsewhere

For the study which was published by Neurology, scientists wanted to know if your chances of experiencing thrombotic events such as stroke are higher for female migraine patients with aura (MwA) or without aura (MWoA), and if the usage or recent or older birth control methods has any effect, as well.

What they discovered is that female migraine with aura patients who use combined hormonal contraceptives (CHCs) are at a considerably high risk for suffering stroke or deep vein thrombosis, especially when compared to migraine patients who don’t use birth control.

Beat Menstrual Migraines, Naturally!

Study author Shivang Joshi commented on the safety of using birth control to treat migraines triggered by hormones, noting that “combined hormonal contraceptives are sometimes recommended to treat migraine, but they are not approved by the FDA for this indication.”

Which contraceptives are most dangerous?

Combined hormonal contraceptives examined for this study on migraine patients included:

•Etonogestrel-ethinyl estradiol vaginal ring (Nuvaring)
•Drospirenone-ethinyl estradiol (Yasmin)
•Norgestromin-ethinyl estradiol transdermal patch (Ortho Evra)
•Levonorgestrel-ethinyl estradiol
•Norethindrone-ethinyl estradiol (Ortho-Novum)
•Norgestimate-ethinyl estradiol (Ortho-Tri-Cyclen Lo)

Scientists confirmed increased risk for stroke when migraine patients used newer CHCs, such as the Nuvaring and the Ortho Evra patch, as opposed to some of the older birth control tablets.

While this research is still in the preliminary stages, health experts recommend avoiding the birth control patch or ring if you get migraines with aura, particularly if you are obese or suffer from hypertension.

To reduce your risk for stroke while managing migraines more effectively, consider increasing daily exercise, following a low-fat diet, and supplementing with vitamins, minerals, and herbs that help to regulate circulation and sustain neurological health.

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