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Seventy consecutive patients presenting with a clinical diagnosis of chronic muscle contraction headache over a two-year period were evaluated for depression and anxiety scores, along with other possible aetiological factors in this form of headache. Fifty-five of these patients (33 from a hospital neurology clinic and 22 from a local general practice) completed a double-blind study to evaluate flupenthixol 0.5 mg twice daily, diazepam 5 mg twice daily and placebo as prophylactic agents. Patients evaluated in the hospital neurology clinic had more frequent headaches of longer duration, higher analgesic consumption and higher depression, but no higher anxiety scores than those in general practice. Flupenthixol and diazepam were both significantly superior to placebo in reducing headaches and analgesic consumption. The trend was for flupenthixol to be superior to diazepam without reaching statistical significance. Flupenthixol was significantly better than diazepam and placebo in the reduction of Hamilton depression scores. This effect was independent of the effect on headache and analgesic reduction.