TUESDAY, March 1, 2022 (HealthDay News) — Prepregnancy migraine is associated with higher risks for preterm delivery, gestational hypertension, and preeclampsia, according to a study scheduled for presentation at the upcoming annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology, to be held from April 2 to 7 in Seattle.

Alexandra Purdue-Smithe, Ph.D., from Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, and colleagues examined associations between prepregnancy migraine, aura phenotype, and risk for adverse pregnancy outcomes among 30,555 pregnant women participating in the Nurses’ Health Study 2 (1989 to 2009).

The researchers found that women with prepregnancy migraine (11 percent) exhibited higher risks for preterm delivery (relative risk [RR], 1.17; 95 percent confidence interval [CI], 1.05 to 1.30), gestational hypertension (RR, 1.28; 95 percent CI, 1.11 to 1.48), and preeclampsia (RR, 1.40; 95 percent CI, 1.19 to 1.65) compared with women without prepregnancy migraine, when adjusting for age, adiposity, and other behavioral and health factors. There was no association observed between prepregnancy migraine and low birthweight (RR, 0.99; 95 percent CI, 0.85 to 1.16) or gestational diabetes mellitus (RR, 1.05; 95 percent CI, 0.91 to 1.22). The risk for preeclampsia was somewhat higher among women with migraine with aura (RR, 1.51; 95 percent CI, 1.22 to 1.88) than those with migraine without aura (RR, 1.29; 95 percent CI, 1.04 to 1.61) compared with women without prepregnancy migraine. There were no other differences observed in risks for other adverse pregnancy outcomes by aura phenotype.

“While the risks of these complications are still quite low overall, women with a history of migraine should be aware of and consult with their doctor on potential pregnancy risks,” Purdue-Smithe said in a statement. “Women with migraine may benefit from closer monitoring during pregnancy so that complications like preeclampsia can be identified and managed as soon as possible.”

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