What is the role of percutaneous radiofrequency (RF) ablation 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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Percutaneous RF ablation may achieve success in 50% of patients, with fair-to-good results in 20% and failure in about 30%. Side effects include facial dysesthesia, corneal sensory loss, and anesthesia dolorosa. Gamma-knife radiosurgery is a less invasive alternative for pervasive CH but is associated with a significantly increased risk for facial sensory disturbances. [23] Botulinum toxin injections to manage CH have produced limited success. [24] Greater occipital nerve block may be beneficial in aborting CH. [11, 25]

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