by Dr. Sania Siddiqui on  May 17, 2011 at 12:49 PM Health Watch
Watch That Headache If You Are Pregnant
Recently a study was conducted in Peru, aiming to find the correlation and risk in pregnancy complications (such as placental abruption) associated with maternal headaches.

Placental abruption is a pregnancy complication in which the placenta peels away from the inner wall of the uterus before delivery. Studies suggest that hypertensive disorders, thrombophilia, increased maternal age, use of drugs such as cocaine, smoking, and injury to the abdomen may increase the risk of placental abruption.

Migraine, a common and severe debilitating headache and placental abruption share several pathophysiological characteristics. Dr. Sixto Sanchez from University hospital of San Martin in Peru and colleagues assessed the risk of placental abruption in relation to maternal history of migraine, before and during pregnancy in Peruvian women.

The study enrolled cases of 375 women with pregnancies complicated by placental abruption, and controls of 368 women without any abruption. For the study, women were asked if they had any physician-diagnosed migraine. After that the subject's headaches and migraine were classified according to a criteria established by the International Headache Society. To calculate odds ratios (aOR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) logistic regression procedures were used to adjusted for confounders.

Research reports reveal that history of headache or migraine was associated with an increased risk of placental abruption (aOR = 1.60; 95% CI 1.16-2.20). A lifetime history of migraine was associated with a 2.14-fold increased odds of placental abruption (aOR = 2.14; 95% CI 1.22-3.75). The odds of placental abruption was 2.11 (95% CI 1.00-4.45) for migraine without aura; and 1.59 (95% 0.70-3.62) for migraine with aura.

Study authors concluded, "Study adds placental abruption to a growing list of pregnancy complications associated with maternal headache/migraine disorders." Nevertheless, authors also feel the need for more prospective cohort studies for rigorous evaluation to investigate the extent to which migraines and/or its treatments are associated with the occurrence of placental abruption. They suggest that 'Preconception counseling, important for women with any medical conditions including migraine, may provide opportunities for optimizing control of migraine symptoms with the lowest effective doses of the lowest number of medications; or if appropriate, with non-pharmacological treatment including biofeedback-assisted relaxation, hydration, improved sleep hygiene and reductions in occupational and home activities'.

Reference Article

Source: Medindia

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