Abnormal dexamethasone suppression test in daily chronic headache sufferers

Emilia Martignoni, Fabio Facchinetti, Gian Camillo Manzoni, Felice Petraglia, Giuseppe Nappi, Andrea Riccardo Genazzani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The dexamethasone suppression test (DST) was administered in 48 daily chronic headache (DCH) sufferers, 37 of whom also suffered from mild to severe depression. In 14 of 48 subjects (29.2%), cortisol values at 1600h were > 50 ng/ml, despite normal suppression at 0800h. The escapers showed basal cortisol values and (Depression scale) scores on the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory higher than suppressors. Thus, a group of DCH sufferers appeared to share a biochemical defect often seen in endogeneous depression. The escape from dexamethasone suppression could be a psychobiological indicator of vulnerability to develop depressive disorder and/or chronic pain complaints.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)51-57
Number of pages7
JournalPsychiatry Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1986


  • Daily chronic headache
  • depression
  • dexamethasone suppression test
  • psychobiology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry
  • Psychology(all)

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  • Cite this

    Martignoni, E., Facchinetti, F., Manzoni, G. C., Petraglia, F., Nappi, G., & Genazzani, A. R. (1986). Abnormal dexamethasone suppression test in daily chronic headache sufferers. Psychiatry Research, 19(1), 51-57. https://doi.org/10.1016/0165-1781(86)90092-2