What is the role of intranasal treatments 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

Intranasal civamide and capsaicin have yielded good results in clinical trials. Application of capsaicin to the nasal mucosa led to a clinically significant decrease in the number and severity of cluster headaches; nasal burning was the most common adverse effect.

Intranasal administration of lidocaine drops (1 mL of a 10% solution placed on a swab in each nostril for 5 minutes) is possibly helpful; however, it requires a specific and, for many patients, difficult technique.


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