| chronic pain

Update! Cluster Headache Data

Questionnaire Reveals New Information

A questionnaire answered by over 1600 cluster headache sufferers (who met the International Classification of Headache Disorders criteria) provided researchers with interesting information. The results, published in Headache: The Journal of Head and Face Pain, revealed that:

  • Even though pediatric onset of cluster headaches was seen in 27.5%, diagnosis before age 18 occurred in only 15.2% of participants
  • Almost all responders had ≥1 symptom autonomic nervous system reaction, such as red eye, restlessness, nasal congestion
  • About half also had sound and light sensitivity
  • About a third suffered from physical activity related pain
  • Over a fifth had nausea/vomiting

The study concluded, “chronic cluster headache is not only less responsive to newer treatments (like noninvasive vagus nerve stimulation and galcanezumab), but to traditional first-line treatments as well.” Lead researcher Mark Burish, MD, PhD, assistant professor in the Vivian L. Smith Department of Neurosurgery with McGovern Medical School at UTHealth Houston, stated, “I hope that this study will change the traditional thinking that cluster headache only affects adult men. Our study shows that it commonly starts in childhood, and that many children go years without the correct diagnosis, presumably suffering the entire time because they don’t have the correct treatments.”

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