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IHC 2021 | Patient perspective of complementary and integrative medicine for migraine treatment

Deena Kuruvilla, MD, Westport Headache Institute, Westport, CT, gives an overview of a recent study on the use of complementary and integrative medicine (CIM) in migraine prevention. CIM consists of supplements, meditation, and body-based maneuvers such as acupuncture. The study was based on a social media survey of around 400 participants with a prior migraine diagnosis. The vast majority of patients had tried a CIM approach, or a combination of CIM approaches. Most of the participants had reported CIM as ‘slightly effective’. Dr Kuruvilla discussed how this was expected as there is little evidence-based research on these treatments. However, they may be helpful when used alongside other treatments. The study also discovered that around 50% of the participants had tried cannabis to treat migraine, highlighting the importance of using these studies to find out treatments patients use without a physician’s recommendation. This interview took place during the International Headache Congress 2021.


Consultant: Cefaly, Neurolief, Theranica, Nowwhat media, KX advisors
Speakers Bureau: Abbvie/Allergan, Amgen/Novartis, Lilly, American Headache Society, Biohaven, CME meeting
Advisory Board: Abbvie/Allergan, Lilly, Theranica, Amgen/Novartis
Editor, Associate Editor: Healthline
Author: WebMD/Medscape, Healthline