Background Migraine is amongst the top 10 most disabling conditions, and the disease burden is highest in young and middle-aged women. Another variant of the migraine headache, menstrual migraine (MM) is experienced by this cohort of patients. Former studies have done comparisons between various demographic and clinical features of MM versus menstrual-unrelated migraine (MUM) in patients presenting to various clinics with the primary complaint of headaches. We aimed to compare symptoms of migraine in women attending gynecology outpatient clinics, regardless of their presenting complaint. This would help lessen the selection bias and produce more generalizable results. Methods and materials A cross-sectional study was conducted in the outpatient gynecology clinics at a tertiary care hospital over six months. The clinic attendees were screened for sufferers of a primary headache of the migraine type. The migraineurs were then stratified into groups A, MM patients, and group B, MUM patients, using the International Headache Society (HIS) criteria. They were then questioned for the presence of various symptoms associated with their migraine attacks for comparison. Results One-hundred eighty-one women (between 12 years to 55 years) were found to have primary headaches; amongst these, 126 patients met the inclusion criteria and consented to participate; from these, 62 (49.2%) patients had MM and 64 (50.8%) patients had MUM. The symptoms of nausea (p=0.00269), photophobia (p=0.000088), and phonophobia (p=0.0281) were statistically higher in MM patients while vomiting was not a significant feature. Both groups had a predominantly unilateral headache. The average days of the attack had a significant difference between the two groups (p=0.000019), where the duration was longer for MM patients. Conclusions It was observed that patients with MM tend to experience more features associated with migraine headaches, including a longer duration of attacks, and have a worse experience overall.
Copyright © 2020, Abdullah et al.