New research suggests that women over 45 who experience migraines with aura are nearly twice as likely to have a stroke. Migraines with aura are headaches that are preceded by visual impairments such as blind spots and blurred vision. Of the 18 percent of females who have migraines, more than one-third of these women experience migraines with aura. Fortunately, while migraines with aura may help predict a stroke from occurring, it appears to have no influence on long-term damage following a stroke. Women with migraines with aura had comparable recovery rates to women without headaches who suffered from strokes.
While previous studies have linked migraines and strokes, the latest research is the first to record a heightened stroke risk for women specifically with migraines with aura. Since their stroke risk is nearly doubled, middle-aged women with migraines with aura should consider consulting a doctor to find ways to mitigate other risk factors, such as weight gain, sleep apnea, high blood pressure and smoking.
If you suffer from migraines, there are potential solutions to alleviate the pain: