Hemicrania continua (HC) is characterised by a strictly unilateral continuous headache with ipsilateral autonomic features and migrainous symptoms that is exquisitely sensitive to indomethacin.1 As more than 30% of patients report side effects with indomethacin, there is need for an effective and safe alternative. Although several drugs have been used in open-label studies, none offer the same magnitude of response.
Chronic cluster headache is rare and some of these patients become drug-resistant. Occipital nerve stimulation has been successfully employed in open studies to treat chronic drug-resistant cluster headache. Data from large group of occipital nerve stimulation-treated chronic cluster headache patients with long duration follow-up are advantageous.
Occipital nerve stimulation (ONS) has raised new hope for drug-resistant chronic cluster headache (drCCH), a devastating condition. However its mode of action remains elusive. Since the long delay to meaningful effect suggests that ONS induces slow neuromodulation, we have searched for changes in central pain-control areas using metabolic neuroimaging.
Chronic headache represents a very significant public health and economic issue. One treatment modality for chronic refractory headache involves the use of subcutaneous implanted neurostimulator leads in the occipital region. Varied types of headache etiologies including migraine, transformed migraine, chronic daily headache, cluster headache, hemicrania continua, occipital neuralgia, and cervicogenic headache have been studied with peripheral nerve field stimulation and found responsive to stimulation of the suboccipital region, known commonly as occipital nerve stimulation (ONS).