The effectiveness of cognitive-behavioural therapy for post-traumatic headaches

  • Gurr B
  • Coetzer B
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Abstract

Post-traumatic headache is one of the most common symptoms following mild and moderate head injury. Psychological factors are believed to play a role in the cause, maintenance and relief from chronic post-traumatic headache. This research evaluated the effectiveness of a multi-dimensional cognitive-behavioural approach towards rehabilitation of post-traumatic headaches. The sample included 20 participants with post-traumatic headaches from an original sample of 41. Participants acted as their own controls. Outcome measures consisted of self-rating questionnaires to assess headache severity, intensity, duration, functioning and emotional well-being. Emotional and functional headache characteristics were studied using a multi-dimensional investigation which included relatives' perceptions of the sufferers headaches. The intervention proved effective and beneficial for the 20 therapy participants. It is concluded that cognitive-behavioural therapy provides a useful supplement to the treatment of post-traumatic headache.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Cognitive-behavioural therapy
  • Head injury
  • Post-concussional symptoms
  • Post-traumatic headaches

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Authors

  • Birgit Gurr

  • B. R. Coetzer

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