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Monday, May 22, 2017

Complementary and integrative medicine for headache: a review


Abstract (as presented by the authors of the scientific work):

"Headaches, including primary headaches such as migraine and tension-type headache, are a common clinical problem. Complementary and integrative medicine (CIM), formerly known as complementary and alternative medicine (CAM), uses evidence informed modalities to assist in the health and healing of patients. CIM commonly includes the use of nutrition, movement practices, manual therapy, traditional Chinese medicine, and mind-body strategies. This review summarizes the literature on the use of CIM for primary headache and is based on five meta-analyses, seven systematic reviews, and 34 randomized controlled trials (RCTs). The overall quality of the evidence for CIM in headache management is generally low and occasionally moderate. Available evidence suggests that traditional Chinese medicine including acupuncture, massage, yoga, biofeedback, and meditation have a positive effect on migraine and tension headaches. Spinal manipulation, chiropractic care, some supplements and botanicals, diet alteration, and hydrotherapy may also be beneficial in migraine headache. CIM has not been studied or it is not effective for cluster headache. Further research is needed to determine the most effective role for CIM in patients with headache."


Covered topics (the letter size corresponds to the frequency of mentioning in the text):





Conclusion (as presented by the authors of the scientific work):

"The use of CIM therapies has the potential to empower patients and help them take an active role in their care. Many CIM modalities, including mind-body therapies, are both self selected and self administered after an education period. This, coupled with patients’ increased desire to incorporate integrative medicine, should prompt healthcare providers to consider and discuss its inclusion in the overall management strategy.
Low to moderate quality evidence exists for the effectiveness of some CIM therapies in the management of primary headache.
The evidence for and use of CIM is continuously changing so healthcare professionals should direct their patients to reliable and updated resources, such as NCCIH."


Full-text access of the referenced scientific work:

Millstine D, Chen CY, Bauer B. Complementary and integrative medicine in the
management of headache. BMJ. 2017 May 16;357:j1805. doi: 10.1136/bmj.j1805.
Review. PubMed PMID: 28512119.
http://www.bmj.com/content/357/bmj.j1805.long


Further reading:

Complementary and integrative medicine (MedlinePlus): "Many Americans use medical treatments that are not part of mainstream medicine. When you are using these types of care, it may be called complementary, integrative, or alternative medicine.
Complementary medicine is used together with mainstream medical care. An example is using acupuncture to help with side effects of cancer treatment. When health care providers and facilities offer both types of care, it is called integrative medicine. Alternative medicine is used instead of mainstream medical care.
The claims that non-mainstream practitioners make can sound promising. However, researchers do not know how safe many of these treatments are or how well they work. Studies are underway to determine the safety and usefulness of many of these practices.
To minimize the health risks of a non-mainstream treatment
*Discuss it with your doctor. It might have side effects or interact with other medicines.
*Find out what the research says about it
*Choose practitioners carefully
*Tell all of your doctors and practitioners about all of the different types of treatments you use
...read more".

Headache (Wikipedia): "Headache is the symptom of pain anywhere in the region of the head or neck. It occurs in migraines ( sharp, or throbbing pains), tension-type headaches, and cluster headaches.[1] Frequent headaches can affect relationships and employment.[1] There is also an increased risk of depression in those with severe headaches.[1]
Headaches can occur as a result of many conditions whether serious or not. There are a number of different classification systems for headaches. The most well-recognized is that of the International Headache Society. Causes of headaches may include fatigue, sleep deprivation, stress, the effects of medications, the effects of recreational drugs, viral infections, loud noises, common colds, head injury, rapid ingestion of a very cold food or beverage, and dental or sinus issues.
Treatment of a headache depends on the underlying cause, but commonly involves pain medication. Some form of headache is one of the most commonly experienced of all physical discomforts.
About half of adults have a headache in a given year.[1] Tension headaches are the most common, affecting about 1.6 billion people (21.8% of the population) followed by migraine headaches which affect about 848 million (11.7%).[2]... read more".

Headache treatment options (WebMD): "There are many headache remedies. Medications can ease your pain, but changing your lifestyle to control stress or avoid triggers works well, too, and may prevent you from getting headaches. What works for one person may not work for another, so work with your doctor to find the best remedy for you.
Medications for Headaches
Different types of medicine treat different types of headaches.
Tension headaches:  Pain relievers such as acetaminophen, aspirin, ibuprofen, or naproxen,  usually help. But be careful. Taking too many of these pills can cause hard-to-treat rebound headaches. If you need to take these drugs often, see your doctor. Do not give aspirin to anyone under age 19 -- it raises their risk for a serious condition called Reye's syndrome.
Migraines: One type of drug, called triptans, is the mainstay of migraine treatment. They include eletriptan (Relpax), naratriptan (Amerge), rizatriptan (Maxalt), sumatriptan (Imitrex, Zecuity), zolmitriptan (Zomig), and others. You can take them as pills, injections, and skin patches.... read more".


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