Cervicogenic headache is defined as a headache caused by a disorder of the cervical spine (whether bony structures, disc, and/or soft tissue elements) usually accompanied by neck pain. Patients typically report unilateral headache pain without a side shift, pain elicited with external pressure over the ipsilateral upper neck, limited cervical range of motion, and an increase in symptoms caused by various awkward or sustained neck movements.
 
Cervicogenic headaches are frequently treated with spinal mobilization and manipulation, as past systematic reviews support their use. However, a recent trial appears to demonstrate that upper cervical and upper thoracic manipulation is more effective than non-thrust mobilization and exercise in patients with cervicogenic headache. In addition, although the use of dry needling for the treatment of cervicogenic headaches is inconclusive, recent systematic reviews have demonstrated low to moderate quality evidence that acupuncture reduces headache frequency in migraine and tension-type headache sufferers.
 
Typically, cervicogenic headache patients require a multimodal treatment approach. Therefore, the purpose of this randomized clinical trial is to determine the effects of thrust spinal manipulation and electrical dry needling compared to non-thrust spinal mobilization and exercise in patients with cervicogenic headache.

THIS WEEK'S RESEARCH REVIEW: “SMT & Perineural Electrical Dry Needling for Cervicogenic Headache – RCT”
 
This paper was published in The Spine Journal (2021) and this Review is posted in Recent Reviews, Headache - Cervicogenic, Acupuncture - Headache and the 2021 Archive.
 
 
Cervical manipulation

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