Managing Hormonal Migraines Through Menopause

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Key Questions
  • Are hormones the reason why more women experience migraine?
  • What happens to hormones as a woman ages?
  • How many women with migraine have a strong hormonal connection?
  • What is menstrually-related migraine?
  • What is pure menstrual migraine? How is it different?
  • What is the secret to understanding your hormonal pattern?
  • How is it diagnosed? [6:10] How do hormones affect migraine?
  • Can menstrual migraine be treated?
  • Which treatments are effective for hormonal migraine?
  • Can hormonal migraine be effectively managed?
  • What type of hormone replacement therapy (HRT) might be used?
  • How might treatment be adapted for hormonal migraine?
  • What doses are required?
  • What can you do if you are contraindicated for HRT?
  • What other treatment options are there that could be effective?
  • What are some inexpensive ways to manage hormonal migraine?
  • What is a proactive strategy that can be implemented to prevent hormonal migraine?
  • Who are the experts that can really help address hormonal migraine?
  • What happens to hormonal migraine attacks during pregnancy?
  • What treatments can be taken safely during pregnancy?
  • What treatments can be taken safely during breastfeeding?
  • How do you juggle all the different healthcare professionals that you might need to work with for hormonal migraine?
  • What natural alternatives can be effective for migraine prevention?
  • What are the most difficult life stages for hormonal migraine?
  • How can we prepare for this?
  • Which treatments can address both hormonal symptoms and migraine together?
  • What is menopause and the implications for hormonal migraine?
  • Which surgical alternative is not recommended for managing hormonal migraine?
  • What treatment types do you prefer for hormonal migraine and why?
  • What are the telltale signs of hormonal migraine?
  • What advice do you give to your patients with hormonal migraine?
  • Is there a link between endometriosis and migraine?
  • What mistakes are often made by inexperienced doctors when treating hormonal migraine?
Interview Notes

Find more about Susan Hutchinson, MD and her work here:


Susan Hutchinson, MD

Author - The Women's Guide to Managing Migraine
Orange County Migraine & Headache Center

Dr. Susan Hutchinson is a headache specialist and board-certified family practice physician. In February 2007, she founded Orange County Migraine & Headache Center, dedicated to serving patients with headache and mood disorders. Although she is not a psychiatrist, she has developed a special interest in treating mood disorders as well as headache. The mood disorders she treats include depression; anxiety; bipolar disorder; ADHD; and panic attacks. Dr. Hutchinson suffers from migraine headaches which gives her an empathy with her patients.

She felt such a calling to help patients with headache and mood disorders that she decided to specialize and devote her career to alleviating the suffering caused by both headaches and mood disorders. She lectures nationally on the subject of headache; has written dozens of articles for medical journals; participated in headache research projects and is very active in numerous professional organizations such as the American Headache Society and the National Headache Foundation.

She is the immediate post-chair of the Women’s Issues section of the American Headache Society after serving in the chair position for 5 years. Dr. Hutchinson is a dynamic and sought-after speaker. She speaks for community groups as well as professional groups. In 2010 she became the President of The Orange County Chapter of the California Academy of Family Physicians.

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