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Cervicogenic Headache

Suffering from Cervicogenic Headache?

There is widespread support in the literature that headaches are often multifactorial in their origins. If your assessment reveals poor posture, knots within the muscles, previous history of RTA, limited range of cervical spine movement, palpatory tightness or a reproduction of symptoms on cervical palpation you may consider referring to physio. Even a short trial period of treatment is often used to help with differential diagnosis provided medical review is arranged if symptoms remain unchanged.

 

PHYSIOTHERAPY TREATMENT

Treatment is guided by signs and symptoms but the literature supports a 2 phase programme:

  • Mobilisation of the upper cervical spine

Improvement in symptoms of a cervicogenic headache has been shown with attention to pain provoking structures (Edeling 1994, Jull 1994b, Schoensee 1995). However, whilst improvements were gained in the short term there was a plateau after mobilization.

  • Muscle Re-Training

Specific exercises isolating the deep flexors and addressing postural dysfunction. In a study by Beeton and Jull(1994) it was found by incorporating these into a more comprehensive programme that improvements were maintained 6 weeks after treatment had ceased.

 

References:

Edeling J (1994): Manual Therapy for a Chronic Headache (2nd ed.) Oxford: Butterworth- Heinemann.*Jull GA(1994b): Headaches of cervical origin. In Grant R(Ed.): Physical Therapy of the Cervical and Thoracic Spine (2nd ed.) New York: Churchill Livingstone).

Schoensee SK, Jensen G, Nicholson G, Gossman M and Katholi C (1995): The effect of mobilization on cervical headaches. Journal of Orthopaedic and Sports Physical Therapy 21(4): 184-196.

 Our client feedback

 ClaireH-98 17 Aug 2016 –
Relief After 25 Years
Having suffered from headaches for 25 years (and tried all sorts of unsuccessful treatments), I heard about trigger point therapy and decided to give it a go. The intense hands-on physiotherapy freed my neck and back up and reduced the severity of my headaches. Praveen gave me a number of short exercised to facilitate improvement and I found that combining these with his treatment has brought much relief from pain. I would highly recommend this treatment and in particular, Praveen who is very experienced and very pleasant.

East Grinstead Physiotherapists are involved in a comprehensive ongoing education programme including the management of acute and chronic headaches.

 

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