VM Study: Triggers

What brings on VM attacks

Triggers Overview

We posed questions about triggers for VM. These might be dietary, physiological or environmental. The responses reveal common triggers among respondents.

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Mixed reports on caffeine

Of those knowing it's effect, 8.8% reported caffeine as being positive, with 57.4% saying it had a strong or mild negative effect

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Salt not trigger for most

52.8% or respondents who knew the effect of salt said it made no impact on their symptoms

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Periods a strong trigger

More than 40% of women indicated that menstruation had a strong effect on their VM

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Cheese safe for most

57% of respondents said cheese had no impact on their VM, and only 16% rated it as having a 'strong effect'

Dietary triggers

Alcohol affecting 7 out of 10

More than a third of respondents reported a 'strong negative effect' with alcohol in general, with a similar share reporting a 'mild negative effect'.

While caffeine had relatively high levels of negative reporting, it was also the food that had the highest reporting of it being a positive factor.

It's possible that the reporting of these foods relates partly to their effect on feelings of general wellbeing rather than any VM-specific interactions.

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Menstruation, stress and sleep

Stress was the most likely trigger to be reported 'strong' among the respondents, with 69% of respondents indicating so.

A similar proportion of women reported mensuration had a strong influence on their VM.

Overall, too little sleep was reported as the factor that had the most prevalent influence on symptoms overall.More than 95% of respondents for whom the effect of this was known reported that it has a strong or mild effect on their VM.

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Respondents aware of their triggers

The survey gave the opportunity for respondents to mark the effect of any proposed trigger as 'unknown' in order to separate those who were sure there was no personal link from those who were unable to make such an assessment.

Taking a flight was the only factor to receive less than 50% definitive responses, perhaps due to the infrequent occurrence of the activity among the sample group compared to other more common factors.

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Want to dig into the data yourself?

There are many environmental and dietary factors that can bring on an attack of VM. The survey revealed which of these were the major triggers across the population.

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The information presented here is the result of a survey, and shows aggregated data submitted by VM sufferers. This information does not constitute medical advice, and MalaDIO does not endorse any medications or other treatments. Any changes to your treatment should be taken under medical advice.