How are migraine headache triggers managed?

Updated: Oct 21, 2019
  • Author: Jasvinder Chawla, MD, MBA; Chief Editor: Helmi L Lutsep, MD  more...
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Answer

Patients should avoid factors that precipitate a migraine attack (eg, lack of sleep, fatigue, stress, certain foods, use of vasodilators). Encourage patients to use a daily diary to document the headaches. This is an effective and inexpensive tool to follow the course of the disease.

Patients may need to discontinue any medications that exacerbate their headaches. If an oral contraceptive is suspected to be a trigger, the patient may be advised to modify, change, or discontinue its use for a trial period. [83] Similarly, when hormone replacement therapy is a suspected trigger, patients should reduce dosages, if possible. If headaches persist, consider discontinuing hormone therapy.


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