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See detailEFNS guideline on the treatment of tension-type headache - Report of an EFNS task force.
Bendtsen, L.; Evers, S.; Linde, M. et al

in European Journal of Neurology (2010)

Background: Tension-type headache (TTH) is the most prevalent headache type and is causing a high degree of disability. Treatment of frequent TTH is often difficult. Objectives: To give evidence-based or ... [more ▼]

Background: Tension-type headache (TTH) is the most prevalent headache type and is causing a high degree of disability. Treatment of frequent TTH is often difficult. Objectives: To give evidence-based or expert recommendations for the different treatment procedures in TTH based on a literature search and the consensus of an expert panel. Methods: All available medical reference systems were screened for the range of clinical studies on TTH. The findings in these studies were evaluated according to the recommendations of the EFNS resulting in level A, B or C recommendations and good practice points. Recommendations: Non-drug management should always be considered although the scientific basis is limited. Information, reassurance and identification of trigger factors may be rewarding. Electromyography (EMG) biofeedback has a documented effect in TTH, whilst cognitive-behavioural therapy and relaxation training most likely are effective. Physical therapy and acupuncture may be valuable options for patients with frequent TTH, but there is no robust scientific evidence for efficacy. Simple analgesics and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are recommended for the treatment of episodic TTH. Combination analgesics containing caffeine are drugs of second choice. Triptans, muscle relaxants and opioids should not be used. It is crucial to avoid frequent and excessive use of analgesics to prevent the development of medication-overuse headache. The tricyclic antidepressant amitriptyline is drug of first choice for the prophylactic treatment of chronic TTH. Mirtazapine and venlafaxine are drugs of second choice. The efficacy of the prophylactic drugs is often limited, and treatment may be hampered by side effects. [less ▲]

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See detailA comparative study of oral acetylsalicyclic acid and metoprolol for the prophylactic treatment of migraine. A randomized, controlled, double-blind, parallel group phase III study.
Diener, H. C.; Hartung, E.; Chrubasik, J. et al

in Cephalalgia : An International Journal of Headache (2001), 21(2), 120-8

This study was a multinational, multicentre, double-blind, active controlled phase III trial designed to investigate efficacy and safety of 300 mg acetylsalicyclic acid (ASA) (n = 135) vs. 200 mg ... [more ▼]

This study was a multinational, multicentre, double-blind, active controlled phase III trial designed to investigate efficacy and safety of 300 mg acetylsalicyclic acid (ASA) (n = 135) vs. 200 mg metoprolol (n = 135) in the prophylaxis of migraine. In total 270 (51 male and 219 female) patients, aged 18-65 years, suffering between two and six migraine attacks per month were recruited. The main objective was to show equivalence with respect to efficacy, defined as a 50% reduction in the rate of migraine attacks. A run-in phase was carried out with placebo for 4 weeks, followed by a 16-week drug phase. In both treatment groups the median frequency of migraine attacks improved during the study period, from three to two in the ASA group and from three to one in the metoprolol group; 45.2% of all metoprolol patients were responders compared with 29.6% with ASA. Medication-related adverse events were less frequent in the ASA group (37) than in the metoprolol group (73). The findings from this trial show that metoprolol is superior to ASA for migraine prophylaxis but has more side-effects. Acetylsalicylic acid is better tolerated than metoprolol. Using a strict responder criterion ASA showed a responder rate comparable with the placebo rate in the literature. [less ▲]

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