What is the role of surgical intervention in the treatment of 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

Various procedures may be performed on trigeminal nerve or autonomic pathways, including alcohol injections and section or avulsion of nerves for chronic refractory cases. Surgical treatment may be initiated if the patient has contraindications to medications or if medications are not effective; it is employed only in strictly unilateral cases. Radiofrequency (RF) thermocoagulation of the trigeminal ganglion has had promising results in some patients with intractable pain.


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