National Headache Foundation
Clinical Update: Caffeine and Headache
The National Headache Foundation (NHF), a non-profit organization dedicated to serve as an information resource to headache sufferers, their families and the healthcare providers who treat them, convened a distinguished, multidisciplinary faculty to review and clarify issues regarding the relationship between caffeine and headache. Our expert panel addressed topics of importance to clinicians involved in diagnosing or treating patients with headache disorders. Specifically, the purpose of the meeting was to:
- Review the professional literature about caffeine and its relationship with headache
- Provide detailed analyses of important subtopics, such as safety, efficacy, dosing, overuse, withdrawal, and addiction
- Summarize findings for medical professionals
- Translate relevant information into patient education materials.
In 2010, the NHF received an unrestricted educational grant to review the medical literature published about caffeine and headache in the decade since the original program and to incorporate any relevant findings into this educational module. The resulting publication, aimed at medical professionals, is intended to provide a scientific summary of published research involving caffeine and headache.
Faculty affiliations and presentation topics* included:
- Jerome Goldstein, MD, Director, San Francisco Headache Clinic, San Francisco, CA
"Caffeine in headache therapy."
- Merle Diamond, MD, Associate Director, Diamond Headache Clinic, Chicago, IL
"Caffeine as an analgesic adjuvant."
- Robert E. Ryan, Jr., MD, Executive Director, Ryan Headache Center, St. Louis, MO
"Etiology of caffeine-withdrawal headache."
- Philip Bain, MD, Clinical Assistant Professor, Medical College of Wisconsin; Practicing Internist, Wilkinson Medical Clinic, Hartland, WI
"Rebound headache: an overview."
- Charles O'Brien, MD, PhD, Professor and Vice Chairman, Department of Psychiatry, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA
"Perspectives on habituation and addiction."
*The opinions expressed in this document are those of the participants. They do not necessarily reflect the positions of the sponsor or the National Headache Foundation.