Poor Sleep in Premenopausal and Perimenopausal Women Linked to Migraine History


History of migraine may be associated with poor sleep in premenopausal and perimenopausal women, according to research presented at the North American Menopause Society Annual Meeting.

Women with a history of migraine are more likely to also experience poor sleep, especially during the menopause transition, according to research presented at the North American Menopause Society (NAMS) Annual Meeting.

Not only do women experience migraines and poor sleep more often than men, but poor sleep also costs the US economy roughly $411 billion per year, affecting work productivity, absenteeism, and impairment on women’s quality of life.

While an association between migraines and sleep quality has been established in previous studies, studies are lacking when it comes to poor sleep and migraines during the menopause transition.

In an effort to investigate the relationship between poor sleep and migraines during the menopause transition, researchers from the Mayo Clinic studied and compared 2000 perimenopausal and premenopausal women, considering potential confounding variables.

"To our knowledge, this is the first study to examine the association between migraine and sleep quality in pre-compared to perimenopausal women using validated tools in a large cohort of women across three geographical locations,” said Summer Ghaith, lead author of the study from the Mayo Clinic School of Medicine.

Results of this cross-sectional study demonstrated a link between the history of migraine and poor sleep quality in both premenopausal and perimenopausal women.

“Given the rise of both migraine and sleep disturbances during the menopause transition, we were interested to see whether the relationship between these two entities changes as women advance through the reproductive stages, and that is exactly what we found. In contrast to the findings in premenopausal women, the association appears to be driven by other factors in perimenopausal women,” said Ghaith.

Study results also found that in perimenopausal women compared to premenopausal women, the relationship between poor sleep during the menopause transition can be influenced by body mass index, depression, anxiety, and hot flashes compared

"Clinicians caring for women with migraine should ask about their sleep quality regardless of menopause status, although management strategies to address poor sleep in migraine sufferers may differ depending on menopause status," said Stephanie Faubion, MD, MBA, NAMS medical director.

This article originally appeared on Contemporary OB/GYN.


1. Ghaith S. Does a history of migraines mean you're more likely to be a poor sleeper. Presented at: North American Menopause Society Annual Meeting. October 12-15, Atlanta, Georgia.

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