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1.  Management of secondary chronic headache in the general population: the Akershus study of chronic headache 
Background
The prevalence of secondary chronic headache in our population is 0.5%. Data is sparse on these types of headache and information about utilisation of health care and medication is missing. Our aim was to evaluate utility of health service services and medication use in secondary chronic headache in the general population.
Methods
An age and gender stratified cross-sectional epidemiological survey included 30,000 persons 30–44 years old. Diagnoses were interview-based. The International Classification of Headache Disorders 2nd ed. was applied along with supplementary definitions for chronic rhinosinusitis and cervicogenic headache. Secondary chronic headache exclusively due to medication overuse was excluded.
Results
One hundred and thirteen participants had secondary chronic headache. Thirty % had never consulted a physician, 70% had consulted their GP, 35% had consulted a neurologist and 5% had been hospitalised due to their secondary chronic headache. Co-occurrence of migraine or medication overuse increased the physician contact. Acute headache medication was taken by 84% and 11% used prophylactic medication. Complementary and alternative medicine was used by 73% with the higher frequency among those with than without physician contact.
Conclusion
The pattern of health care utilisation indicates that there is room for improving management of secondary chronic headache.
doi:10.1186/1129-2377-14-5
PMCID: PMC3606965  PMID: 23565808
Secondary chronic headache; Chronic migraine; Medication-overuse headache; Health care utilisation; General population
2.  Study protocol: Brief intervention for medication overuse headache - A double-blinded cluster randomised parallel controlled trial in primary care 
BMC Neurology  2012;12:70.
Background
Chronic headache (headache ≥ 15 days/month for at least 3 months) affects 2–5% of the general population. Medication overuse contributes to the problem. Medication-overuse headache (MOH) can be identified by using the Severity of Dependence Scale (SDS). A “brief intervention” scheme (BI) has previously been used for detoxification from drug and alcohol overuse in other settings. Short, unstructured, individualised simple information may also be enough to detoxify a large portion of those with MOH. We have adapted the structured (BI) scheme to be used for MOH in primary care.
Methods/Design
A double-blinded cluster randomised parallel controlled trial (RCT) of BI vs. business as usual. Intervention will be performed in primary care by GPs trained in BI. Patients with MOH will be identified through a simple screening questionnaire sent to patients on the GPs lists. The BI method involves an approach for identifying patients with high likelihood of MOH using simple questions about headache frequency and the SDS score. Feedback is given to the individual patient on his/her score and consequences this might have regarding the individual risk of medication overuse contributing to their headache. Finally, advice is given regarding measures to be taken, how the patient should proceed and the possible gains for the patient. The participating patients complete a headache diary and receive a clinical interview and neurological examination by a GP experienced in headache diagnostics three months after the intervention. Primary outcomes are number of headache days and number of medication days per month at 3 months. Secondary outcomes include proportions with 25 and 50% improvement at 3 months and maintenance of improvement and quality of life after 12 months.
Discussion
There is a need for evidence-based and cost-effective strategies for treatment of MOH but so far no consensus has been reached regarding an optimal medication withdrawal method. To our knowledge this is the first RCT of structured non-pharmacological MOH treatment in primary care. Results may hold the potential of offering an instrument for treating MOH patients in the general population by GPs.
Trial registration
ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: NCT01314768
doi:10.1186/1471-2377-12-70
PMCID: PMC3488483  PMID: 22883540
Medication-overuse headache; Chronic headache; Chronic tension-type headache; Migraine; Brief intervention; General practice; Primary care; Cluster randomised controlled trial
3.  Management of primary chronic headache in the general population: the Akershus study of chronic headache 
The Journal of Headache and Pain  2011;13(2):113-120.
Primary chronic headaches cause more disability and necessitate high utilisation of health care. Our knowledge is based on selected populations, while information from the general population is largely lacking. An age and gender-stratified cross-sectional epidemiological survey included 30,000 persons aged 30–44 years. Respondents with self-reported chronic headache were interviewed by physicians. The International Classification of Headache Disorders was used. Of all primary chronic headache sufferers, 80% had consulted their general practitioner (GP), of these 19% had also consulted a neurologist and 4% had been hospitalised. Co-occurrence of migraine increased the probability of contact with a physician. A high Severity of Dependence Scale score increased the probability for contact with a physician. Complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) was used by 62%, most often physiotherapy, acupuncture and chiropractic. Contact with a physician increased the probability of use of CAM. Acute headache medications were taken by 87%, while only 3% used prophylactic medication. GPs manage the majority of those with primary chronic headache, 1/5 never consults a physician for their headache, while approximately 1/5 is referred to a neurologist or hospitalised. Acute headache medication was frequently overused, while prophylactic medication was rarely used. Thus, avoidance of acute headache medication overuse and increased use of prophylactic medication may improve the management of primary chronic headaches in the future.
doi:10.1007/s10194-011-0391-8
PMCID: PMC3274574  PMID: 21993986
Primary chronic headache; Chronic migraine; Medication-overuse headache; Health care utilisation; General population
4.  Management of primary chronic headache in the general population: the Akershus study of chronic headache 
The Journal of Headache and Pain  2011;13(2):113-120.
Primary chronic headaches cause more disability and necessitate high utilisation of health care. Our knowledge is based on selected populations, while information from the general population is largely lacking. An age and gender-stratified cross-sectional epidemiological survey included 30,000 persons aged 30–44 years. Respondents with self-reported chronic headache were interviewed by physicians. The International Classification of Headache Disorders was used. Of all primary chronic headache sufferers, 80% had consulted their general practitioner (GP), of these 19% had also consulted a neurologist and 4% had been hospitalised. Co-occurrence of migraine increased the probability of contact with a physician. A high Severity of Dependence Scale score increased the probability for contact with a physician. Complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) was used by 62%, most often physiotherapy, acupuncture and chiropractic. Contact with a physician increased the probability of use of CAM. Acute headache medications were taken by 87%, while only 3% used prophylactic medication. GPs manage the majority of those with primary chronic headache, 1/5 never consults a physician for their headache, while approximately 1/5 is referred to a neurologist or hospitalised. Acute headache medication was frequently overused, while prophylactic medication was rarely used. Thus, avoidance of acute headache medication overuse and increased use of prophylactic medication may improve the management of primary chronic headaches in the future.
doi:10.1007/s10194-011-0391-8
PMCID: PMC3274574  PMID: 21993986
Primary chronic headache; Chronic migraine; Medication-overuse headache; Health care utilisation; General population
5.  Self-reported menstrual migraine in the general population 
A number of women with migraine experience increased incidence of attacks during the perimenstrual period. The Appendix of the International Classification of Headache Disorders (ICHD II) describes two types of migraine without aura related to menstruation: pure menstrual migraine (PMM) and menstrually related migraine (MRM). The phrase “menstrual migraine” is often used to cover both PMM and MRM. Although menstrual migraine is well recognized, further scientific evidence is needed before these definitions can be formally included in the ICHD III. The aim of the present study was to investigate the prevalence of PMM and MRM in the general population in Norway. The survey included 15,000 women, 30–44 years old, residing in the eastern part of Norway. They received a postal questionnaire containing six questions about migraine, headache frequency and the relation of migraine and menstruation. The study included 11,123 women. The questionnaire response rate was 77%. The prevalence of self-reported migraine was 34.8%. Of the migraineurs, 21% reported migraine related to menstruation in at least two of three menstrual cycles, of which 7.7% were considered to have PMM and 13.2% MRM. This corresponds to the prevalence of PMM and MRM in the general population of 2.7 and 4.6%, respectively. Thus, self-reported menstrual migraine among women aged 30–44 years appears to be common in the general population in Norway.
doi:10.1007/s10194-010-0197-0
PMCID: PMC3452281  PMID: 20186561
Menstrual migraine; Prevalence; Epidemiology; General population
6.  Continuous levodopa for advanced Parkinson’s disease 
Parkinson’s disease is characterized by the progression of the disease from the early stages where it still has little functional consequence for afflicted patients, to an advanced stage disease with large consequences in terms of function, quality of life and individual and societal costs. Motor fluctuations and symptoms of levodopa overdosage may occur in parallel with increasing Parkinsonian symptoms. This leads to a narrower therapeutic window which causes problems with traditional oral medication. Various ways of optimizing oral treatment should be tried but often have limited effects. In addition to the previous alternatives of neurosurgery (especially deep brain stimulation of the subthalamic nuclei) and continuous apomorphine treatment there is now also the alternative of continuous enteral levodopa administration via a trans-abdominal tube. The effect of the treatment may be tested individually via naso-duodenal administration before a decision is made whether to continue with permanent treatment. In the present article, the challenges to treatment of Parkinson’s disease in these phases are described as well as the various treatment alternatives available. Focus is mainly on the clinical studies of continuous levodopa infusion therapies, especially enteral administration of levodopa/carbidopa gel. The place of enteral levodopa/carbidopa gel treatment among the other treatment methods is also discussed.
PMCID: PMC2654791  PMID: 19300565
Parkinson’s disease; levodopa; carbidopa; levodopa/carbidopa gel

Results 1-6 (6)