Study Looks To Eliminate Menstrual Migraines

Posted on Mar 22, 2009 in Health & Wellness

HealthwatchPITTSBURGH, Pa. (CBS)
Study Looks To Eliminate Menstrual Migraines
Ten to 15 million women experience excruciating migraines around the time of their periods and researchers say hormone fluctuations are to blame.

So experts are studying a new drug combination that may completely eliminate monthly migraines, CBS station KDKA-TV reported.

Traci Fulmer, 38, says her debilitating headaches used to strike at the same time every month. Like millions of other women, Fulmer gets menstrual migraines from fluctuating hormone levels.

“Migraine headaches that occur around the time of the menstrual period are the worst migraine headaches that women get,” said Dr. Patricia Sulak, an OB/GYN.

Fulmer is participating in a groundbreaking study looking at a combination of continuous birth control pills and a prescription headache medicine called Frovatriptan.

Experts say the drug works by narrowing blood vessels around the brain and helps reduce nausea, light sensitivity and other migraine-related symptoms.

Every few months, Fulmer takes a break from the continuous birth control pills.

“But before they take that four day break, we’re gonna start this preventative medicine called Frovatriptan, or they’re gonna get the placebo,” said Dr. Sulak.

So far, Fulmer says she is convinced that she’s getting the real medicine. Her headaches are almost non-existent.

“I’ve been able to do a lot more with the kids,” says Fulmer. “I’m not spending time where I have to say, ‘Please go away. Mom’s got a headache today’. It really makes a difference.”

It’s important to note that currently, Frovatriptan is approved by the FDA for treating migraine headaches, but not for preventing them.
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