What is the role of lithium 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

Lithium has been suggested as an option because of the cyclical nature of CH, which is similar to that of bipolar disorders. It effectively prevents CH (particularly in its more chronic forms) [22] and treats bipolar mood disorder, another cyclic illness. Responses vary (with chronic CH patients generally being more responsive), but lithium is still a recommended first-line agent for CH. There is a tendency for the effect to wane after dramatic relief is seen in the first week.


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