Case study ( 3350 views as of October 23, 2017 )
Nancy, a young medical student, is being seen in the office. She is on the pill for contraception and cycle control as her periods were very heavy. The level of bleeding each month is much reduced and she no longer needs iron supplements to maintain a normal hemoglobin. She is concerned however as she experiences menstrual migraines each month on the second day of her hormone-free interval. She is wondering about continuous use of the pill so that she can avoid her periods and hopes this would help her avoid her debilitating headaches.
Nancy can consult her pharmacist to review which pill she is on and if there is an option for ongoing use. She may also want to review the treatment options for migraine headaches, especially those that can be used early in the headache cycle and/or those that can be used prophylactically to prevent this cyclic headache.
Nancy could benefit from seeing her family physician about the long term safety of the birth control pill. She may also benefit from seeing her pharmacist about over-the-counter options for pain relief with regards to her headaches. It may also be wise to make sure she isn't experiencing tension headaches or neck-related headaches by seeing either a massage therapist or a physiotherapist.Author: Dr. Vivien Brown