Washington, Apr 18 : Women having weekly migraine are more likely to have a stroke than those with fewer migraines or no migraine at all, says a new study.
An American study involving 27,798 women health professionals aged 45 and above revealed that migraine frequency was associated with women's risk of cardiovascular disease
The participants included women who did not have cerebrovascular disease at the beginning of the study and were followed for an average of 12 years during which 706 cerebrovascular events, 305 heart attacks, and 310 ischemic strokes occurred.
Out of 3,568 women with migraine at the start of the study, 65 percent reported migraine less than once a month, 30 percent reported one migraine a month and five percent reported at least weekly migraine.
The findings revealed that women who had at least weekly migraines were three times more likely to have a stroke, but those with a migraine frequency of less than monthly were one-and-halftimes more likely to have a heart attack.
However, those with lower migraine frequency were likely to face increased risk of heart attacks.
"Our findings suggest that migraine frequency may be an indicator for increased risk of cardiovascular disease, particularly ischemic stroke," said Dr Tobias Kurth, study author, ScD, with Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston, and member of the American Academy of Neurology.
"Future studies are needed to address whether migraine prevention reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease.
"Our results may indicate that the mechanisms by which migraine associates with specific cardiovascular events may differ.
"More research is needed to determine the reasons for these results," Kurth added.
The study will be presented at the American Academy of Neurology 60th Anniversary Annual Meeting in Chicago.