My opinion

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Posted by Todd ( on November 08, 2000 at 08:51:51:

In Reply to: Please Fill me in on what is going on....... posted by Jackie on November 08, 2000 at 03:36:16:

So-called 'pain management specialists' attempt to treat the symptom, and ignore the underlying cause. Granted, the full cause of CH is unknown at this point, but there are treatments that appear to affect the root of the problem.

Nowhere in the medical literature and studies focused on CH I have seen have opiates been recommended. The largest study (30 patients) that looked into this area utilized intranasal lidocaine and concluded it was "marginally helpful".

Another study at the Headache Centre of the Institute of Neurology, University of Parma (Italy) conducted by Torelli, Cologno and Manzani looked at lifestyle factors in 374 CH patients. While this study focused on differences between episodics and chronics, one conclusion was to confirm "the well-known tendency of cluster headache patients to overindulge in certain habits".

While any CH'r is happy to hear that a fellow sufferer has found relief, it must be remembered that hundreds if not thousands of people come to this site. Many of these sufferers have woefully inadequate information, due in no small measure to the lack of knowledge amongst the medical community. Just look at the number of posts that say something like "Thanks! I'd never heard of using (O2, Zomig, Imitrex, Cafergot, Verapamil, etc) before I found this site!"

Anyone advocating any treatment has a moral and ethical obligation to present a balanced, objective and factual report. This must include the potential risks and side-effects. Many of the posters do just on 'shrooms' and read what Flash, Miguel, Q, Pinksharkmark and others have written. For many people, the shroom treatment requires breaking the law (depending on where one lives) and for all it is an alternative treatment presently not supported by the medical community. Recognizing this, the people I've named (and others) have taken pains to present all aspects of the issue.

Given that narcotics, and opiates in particular, have little to no demonstated positive effect on CH, that they are highly addictive and that CH'rs have a tendency to overindulge, it would seem reasonable that many, if not most, would be opposed to their use.

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