What are the pharmacologic treatment options for cluster headache (CH)?

Updated: Jun 07, 2019
  • Author: Michelle Blanda, MD; Chief Editor: Tarakad S Ramachandran, MBBS, MBA, MPH, FAAN, FACP, FAHA, FRCP, FRCPC, FRS, LRCP, MRCP, MRCS  more...
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Answer

Pharmacologic management of cluster headache (CH) may be classified into 2 general approaches as follows:

  • Abortive/symptomatic (eg, oxygen, triptans, ergot alkaloids, and anesthetics)

  • Preventive/prophylactic (eg, calcium channel blockers, mood stabilizers, and anticonvulsants)

Olanzapine [11] and kudzu [12] have also been used to treat CH, but their effectiveness has not been determined. Antihistamines, such as chlorpromazine, do not appear to be helpful in relieving CH symptoms. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) may be given for pain relief.


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