Considerations for Women with Migraines During Pregnancy

We often notice valuable discussions taking place within our community forums or Facebook page that we like to highlight as a part of our Headlines. Below is a discussion on managing migraines when pregnant or breasfeeding that we thought our community members would find interesting. Please note that the opinions represented here are solely those of their authors.

As we know, migraines occur more frequently in women than in men, and attack frequency peaks between the ages of 25 and 55 years. Because much of this period of time broadly coincides with a woman’s childbearing years, considering the safety of migraine treatments for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding is extremely important. There are several migraine medications that are not recommended for pregnant women, so it is common that a woman's treatment regimen will have to be adjusted during pregnancy. We received the following question regarding migraine treatment and pregnancy from one of our community members:

I have a question for all the wonderful people here on especially the moms. I'm a 33 years old mom of two awesome kids. We are thinking about adding one more. My question would be what kind of medication could I take during my pregnancy that will be ok for the baby. Right now I jiggle between relpax, treximet and maxalt. The doctor put me on acetaminophen cod 3 and does not help me at all. I am looking for some advice from moms that live with migraine and also had them during pregnancy. I am currently on relpax and treximet, which I understand, are no good while pregnant or nursing but my migraines are severe and debilitating and this is the only thing that works for me. I want to know if anyone with bad migraine took something safe for the baby and if it helped. I am in my first trimester. Any advice is welcome.

Response from our moderator, Tammy Rome


There is some new research out on the safety of triptans during pregnancy, but most doctors still advise pregnant women to avoid all pain meds except Tylenol (which we all know do nothing for migraine).   You will probably need to get your OB to consult with your neuro and be assertive on how debilitating the attacks are. Anything you take will be a risk -- you just need your doctors to help you evaluate the risk vs. benefits. Take a look at this expert opinion on migraine during pregnancy and share it with your doctors. It might help them come up with a better plan.

Please keep us posted on how you are doing.

Tammy Rome

There are several other unique considerations for women who have migraines. To read more, check out some more of our articles, including the most recent research data suggesting that peripheral nerve blocks are both effective and safe for pregnant women and their unborn children.

If you have migraines and have been pregnant or are planning to be pregnant, please share your story with us in the comments!

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