Interventional treatment for cluster headache: A review of the options

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16 Scopus citations


There is no more severe pain than that sustained by a cluster headache sufferer. Surgical treatment of cluster headache should only be considered after a patient has exhausted all medical options or when a patient’s medical history precludes the use of typical cluster abortive and preventive medications. Once a cluster patient is deemed a medical failure only those who have strictly side-fixed headaches should be considered for surgery. Other criteria for cluster surgery include pain localizing to the ophthalmic division of the trigeminal nerve, a psychologically stable individual, and absence of addictive personality traits. To understand the rationale behind the surgical treatment strategies for cluster, one must have a general understanding of the anatomy of cluster pathogenesis. The most frequently used surgical techniques for cluster are directed toward the sensory trigeminal nerve and the cranial parasympathetic system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)57-64
Number of pages8
JournalCurrent pain and headache reports
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2002


  • Chronic Cluster Headache
  • Cluster Headache
  • Gamma Knife
  • Microvascular Decompression
  • Trigeminal Nerve

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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