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OBGYN wants to do hysterectomy to cure migraines
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Hi, I'm absolutely new to this forum, but I've been suffering migraine headaches for 30 plus years. I'm a 45 year old female, and recently my OBGYN has recommended I get another workup from a neurologist, and if they concur, there is a possibility of her recommending a hysterectomy to get rid of my migraines? Anyone ever have much luck with that route?

A little about me, I'm 45, and have had migraines for as long as I can remember. I think I must have been 14-15 when they started. I took Excedrin for 20 years, and suffered from rebound headaches as well. Two years ago, I finally got myself off those, which was a none too pleasant experience, and haven't taken one since. I take a Zomig inhaler (5mg) when I get a migraine. Unfortunately, I always seem to run out of the medication before my insurance will pay for more, so every 3 months or so, I suffer through 3-4 supersized migraines that leave me in bed completely disabled and unable to do anything.

My new OBGYN (for past year) has been very sympathetic and has put me on NuvaRing for 4 weeks at a time (to prevent menstrual cycle), only having a period every 3rd month. That has helped some, and it is a real blessing not to suffer with my menstrual cycle and the inevitable SUPER MIGRAINE I would get, but it hasn't gotten rid of them. She has me seeing a new neurologist in 2 weeks, so we'll see what happens then. I had one several years ago, I loved him, but he moved away, and now my primary doctor prescribes me Zomig. I've tried Topomax, Inderal, antidepressants, etc. But I know there are lots more options out there.

Thanks for being here, its great to know there is so much support out there.
 
Posts: 3 | Location: texas | Registered: 03-05-2010Report This Post
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-:¦:-•:*'""*:•.-:¦:-•*Hello!*•-:¦:-•:*'''''*:•-:¦:-•*Welcome to the family!*•-:¦:- •:*'""*:•.-:¦:-

Hello and welcome to our forum family! Our goal is to provide everyone with the information and support that we all need to manage our Migraines and/or headaches. To that end, we consider this a “safe harbor,” where nobody tries to sell us anything, and we all use “family-friendly” language so parents are comfortable letting their children read the forum with them.

Please take a few minutes to review our policies and guidelines along with the other information in the START HERE folder. For information about Migraines, a good article to begin with is Learning About Migraines - Where to Start.

Migraine specialists would tell you NOT to have a hysterectomy in hopes of reducing your Migraines. It could help, BUT it could also make things worse or make no difference at all.

There is NO cure for Migraine. It's a genetic neurological disease. For some women, the hormonal fluctuations associated with their menstrual cycle can be a Migraine trigger. It's rare for someone to have just one trigger.

If your doctor isn’t able to help you, it may well be time to consult a Migraine and headache specialist. It’s important to note that neurologists aren’t necessarily Migraine and headache specialists. Take a look at the article Migraine and Headache Specialists - What's So Special? If you need help finding a Migraine specialist, check our listing of Patient Recommended Migraine and Headache Specialists.

Welcome again!



Teri Robert
Lead Health Guide, HealthCentral Migraine Community
terimmc@helpforheadaches.com

Author of Living Well with Migraine Disease and Headaches

Stay up-to-date on Migraine info with my free weekly newsleter. Subscribe here

visit me on or

 
Posts: 4220 | Location: West Virginia | Registered: 01-11-2007Report This Post
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Please add a welcome Group Hug from me!

Personally, I'd have to be pretty desperate and have exhausted all other options before I ever considered a hysterectomy. That's a huge risk, and a huge expense for something that might not help and might even make things worse. Messing with hormone levels can trigger some of us something fierce. I trigger enough whenever my thyroid hormones swing one way or the other even just a little. I also have menstrual migraine, and I would suppose that altering those in such a big way would wreak havoc, too.

There are so many, many preventative options out there, with good chances for finding success if we're dilligent and stick with fair trials. I'd much rather do less drastic things than a hysterectomy.



Dragondrool
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~~8=:>>>>
 
Posts: 6478 | Location: Montana | Registered: 01-11-2007Report This Post
Apprentice
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My HA specialist says he has heard of a person getting relief after hysterectomy, but again says it is a huge risk that it will not help or make things worse. The person he was referring to was needing one for other reasons, but just went for the radical to try to help the HA.

There are even other hormonal options besides the Nuva, like the IUD Mirena. I was reading in Foods that Fight Pain about a natural progesterone cream from yams that might help bring down estrogen levels during spikes. I am giving the Nuva a try now, but kind of thinking of the cream. I tend to have reactions to progesterone (moods, acne) so not sure, but I'd definitely give it a go before a surgery, as well as exhaust other options you'd get from a neuro.

So, it's not unheard-of, but all HA books I've read discourage that as an option.

~Cristy
 
Posts: 157 | Location: USA | Registered: 02-06-2010Report This Post
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Hello!Hello!
I'm sorry to say but at 53 I hoped menopause would help with my migraines more - not so! Just letting you what has happened with me (and a few others I know). I wish it was so, but unfortunatly not. Hope you are having a good day!
 
Posts: 3 | Location: Minnesota | Registered: 11-22-2009Report This Post
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Hi...

Have you tried going off any and all birth control? My migraines (with aura) started when I was 21. I battled them for 8 years before I went to see a great migraine specialist in the area who told me of several steps I needed to take to control my migraines....step number 1, no more estrogen. Since quitting the pill (and any other birth control) I have reduced my migraines to once or twice a year...and I no longer get auras. I dunno, this may or may not apply to you, but thought I'd just mention it.
 
Posts: 2 | Registered: 05-20-2010Report This Post
Grasshopper
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Not a doctor but that seems so bizarre to me. Also, has your ob/gyn told you about the health risks of a hysterectomy? Higher risk of osteoporosis & heart disease, among others. Not to mention all the fun side effects of going into instant surgically induced menopause -- insomnia, night sweats, hot flashes, joint pain, bladder control issues, weight gain, memory issues, etc.? Please research all of the above or discuss it with a doctor before deciding to proceed.

Also, there's a less invasive procedure -- oophorectomy (removal of ovaries only; of course, still has same health risks as above).

I had a prophylactic bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy (removal of both ovaries & tubes) 1 1/2 yrs ago at 37 because I have a genetic mutation that puts me at high risk for ovarian cancer & I had severe endometriosis that complicated monitoring for ovarian cancer, as well as caused severe pain. My neurologist was fully aware that I was having the surgery & I asked him if it would help my migraines & he said no.

If anything, it has made them far worse because of the insomnia issues. And the early menopause symptoms have been awful to deal with on top of my migraines. Only plus side has been that the endometriosis is gone & my risk of ovarian cancer has gone from about 50% to 2%. For that, I'm happy I did it but would not have if I didn't have the genetic mutation.

If it were me, I'd get a 2nd, 3rd... & consider less drastic alternatives first.
 
Posts: 35 | Registered: 02-01-2010Report This Post
Master
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A hysterectomy sounds like a mighty drastic option that might not even help. Trying other birth control or maybe non-hormonal versions would defintely be worth a shot.


Amy
 
Posts: 360 | Location: Virginia | Registered: 06-22-2009Report This Post
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I had a hysterectomy (complete--ovaries out too), but due to adenomyosis! I did decide on my own to take the ovaries as well due to monthly headaches, mood swings, etc. (I was 47 then, 50 now). For the first few months, the headaches were better, but overall, it didn't help. I'm still struggling and looking for answers. I wouldn't choose a hysterectomy solely for headache relief. In my case, it was a good decision due to other issues, and I'm not sorry. But unfortunately, it didn't change the headache situation.
Best of luck!
kimSmiler
 
Posts: 71 | Registered: 08-12-2009Report This Post
Fledgling
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I would check everything esle out first before doing something so drastic as doing a hysterectomy, for the simple reason having a whole new set of problems that you would have to deal with along with the chance of still having to deal with the migraines anyway. I would just check everything out first, because there is nothing that says that doing that would work, no guarantee that is. I do feel for you because these headaches are something esle and when they start up they just sometimes take my breathe away. I hope things work out for you and yes this is the right place to be because everyone here knows truly just how these headaches are along with the problem on how to live with them. If you can pick-up Terri's book on Living well with mirgraine, there is a lot of good information in her book that can help. shimmeringdragon
 
Posts: 15 | Location: Iowa | Registered: 05-11-2010Report This Post
Maven
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Clarice,
Welcome!

Like you, I've had migraines for a long time - abdominal as a child, etc., etc.

I'm finally on a medicine and lifestyle that has reduced both the severity and frequency of my migraines. It's taken almost 16 years to get to this point, so, please be patient with yourself.

I had a partial hysterectomy 10 years ago, when I was 46, for very sound medical reasons. It did nothing to change my migraines. We did not know then that my thyroid was starting to give out on me.

Now, I've been on thyroid meds for about 4 years, and am on Vit. D3, and a host of other meds, as per my PCP, Neuro, Gyn and Therapist. I've managed to shed a few pounds, gain some energy, and keep the migraines down to 4's to 6's, once a week (usually.)

You are your own best advocate. Arm yourself with information. Take a "VIP" - Very Informed Person - with you to your appointments to help you remember what gets said. Stay assertive and cordial, never agressive and rude.

We may not yet have a cure, but we can take control over this Disease!

Rebecca, The Island Mama
 
Posts: 854 | Location: coastal South Carolina | Registered: 01-19-2007Report This Post
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hi! This is the 3rd time I have tried to respond to this so I apologize if my response popped up somewhere else..I am new here! Okay I had a hysterectomy 5 years ago because we thought my migraines were due to hormone-craziness. I had been having them constantly nonstop with no relief for over 2 years --I had been dismissed by several doctors (and plenty of "friends", too)--I had attempted suicide, been hospitilized for depression (constant pain for 2 years will depress ya!). One migraine would be lessening --or at least I could open my eyes...and then I'd get another aura, hands go numb, slurred speach, etc. LONG STORY shorter: I had the surgery. It was NOT a magic cure--in fact the headaches intensified for a couple of months. Then I found a headache specialist in Atlanta. I had to go off of some meds and on some new ones---now I am migraine free---my very last one was in March 2006 (hysterectomy was August 2005).--I think the surgery leveled out my hormones so that the meds could do their job. If I had it to do over again, I would discuss something I think is called uterine carterization---don't have a clue how to spell it. It is an outpatient procedure that gets the same results as a hysterectomy--I THINK. GOOD LUCK!! DONT GIVE UP!!!
 
Posts: 2 | Location: warner robins, georgia | Registered: 07-04-2010Report This Post
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-:¦:-•:*'""*:•.-:¦:-•*Hello!*•-:¦:-•:*'''''*:•-:¦:-•*Welcome to the family!*•-:¦:- •:*'""*:•.-:¦:-

Hello and welcome to our forum family, ryleeandhavensmom! Our goal is to provide everyone with the information and support that we all need to manage our Migraines and/or headaches. To that end, we consider this a “safe harbor,” where nobody tries to sell us anything, and we all use “family-friendly” language so parents are comfortable letting their children read the forum with them.

Please take a few minutes to review our policies and guidelines along with the other information in the START HERE folder. For information about Migraines, a good article to begin with is Learning About Migraines - Where to Start.

Nice to meet you! Flower



Dragondrool
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~~8=:>>>>
 
Posts: 6478 | Location: Montana | Registered: 01-11-2007Report This Post
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I see that Droolie got here before me to welcome you, ryleeandhavensmom!

But, let me toss my "Welcome!" onto the pile, and I'm happy that you got such great results from the procedure that you undertook- probably feeling like you were at the end of your rope! Glad it worked so well for you, and with proper meds, you're doing well!

Welcome again!


Jamie
Forum Moderator


 
Posts: 2886 | Location: north carolina | Registered: 01-12-2007Report This Post
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