Headaches during pregnancy

Clin Obstet Gynecol. 2013 Jun;56(2):317-29. doi: 10.1097/GRF.0b013e31828f25e6.


Headache is a common symptom in pregnant women. Although most headaches seen in women are primary headache disorders (migraine, tension-type headache), complications or conditions associated with pregnancy can present with a secondary headache. Headaches are common symptoms in idiopathic intracranial hypertension, eclampsia, and reversible cerebral vascular syndrome. Migraines may begin or worsen during pregnancy, but pregnancy tends to reduce migraine frequency and severity. Although it is desirable to avoid medications for headaches during pregnancy, treatment should be considered when headaches are severe and cause significant disability. Being aware of possible treatments for migraine and headaches during pregnancy is essential.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cerebral Arteries
  • Female
  • Headache Disorders* / etiology
  • Headache Disorders* / therapy
  • Humans
  • Hypertension, Pregnancy-Induced / diagnosis*
  • Intracranial Hypertension / complications
  • Intracranial Hypertension / diagnosis*
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications* / etiology
  • Pregnancy Complications* / therapy
  • Vasospasm, Intracranial