Self-help group and medication overuse headache: Preliminary data

Elisa Sancisi, Marialuisa Rausa, Stefano Zanigni, Sabina Cevoli, Andrea Norcini Pala, Marianna Nicodemo, Daniela Grimaldi, Pasquale Montagna, Pietro Cortelli, Giulia Pierangeli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The objective of the study is to investigate the benefits of joining a self-help group for patients with medication overuse headache (MOH). A self-help group is a voluntary gathering of a small number of persons who share a common problem. Little is known about support groups for people with chronic non-malignant pain such as MOH. Eight patients with refractory MOH attended a self-help group twice a month. During the meetings, patients were asked to focus on their headache experiences. Our data showed an increase in resourcefulness in coping with pain and a reduction in cephalalgiophobia. All patients reported general benefits in sharing their headache-related problems. No differences were found for headache frequency or analgesic overuse. To our knowledge, this is the first report on a self-help group for patients with MOH. Joining a self-help group can help patients develop positive attitudes to managing pain.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)459-463
Number of pages5
JournalNeurological Sciences
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2009


  • Behavioural treatment
  • Chronic pain
  • Coping
  • Medication overuse headache
  • Self-help group

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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