Current Pain and Headache Reports

, Volume 16, Issue 3, pp 237–254 | Cite as

Why HURT? A Review of Clinical Instruments for Headache Management

  • Dawn C. BuseEmail author
  • C. Mark Sollars
  • Timothy J. Steiner
  • Rigmor H. Jensen
  • Mohammed A. Al Jumah
  • Richard B. Lipton
Migraine Headache (F Taylor, Section Editor)


The Global Campaign against Headache, directed by the non-governmental organization Lifting The Burden (LTB) in official relations with the World Health Organization (WHO), aspires to reduce the global burden of headache. Ultimately this calls for improvements in headache management, largely in primary care, where most people with headache receive medical care. In support, LTB is developing a range of headache management aids for primary care. Presently, no single instrument covers the range of assessment and decision-making necessary for successful headache management, and few make the important link between assessment and clinical advice. Expressly to fill this gap, LTB has developed a new instrument: the Headache Under-Response to Treatment (HURT) Questionnaire, an eight-item, self-administered questionnaire addressing headache frequency, disability, medication use and effect, perceptions of headache “control” and knowledge of diagnosis. This instrument is intended not only to evaluate current headache outcomes and assess the need for and response to treatment, but also to provide guidance on appropriate actions towards treatment optimization. The first draft of the HURT was created by an expert consensus group, meeting at WHO headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland. The final version came about through multiple refinements following psychometric testing. Assessment of clinical utility is ongoing in multiple countries.


Headache Migraine Assessment Diagnosis Headache-related disability Headache impact Health-related quality of life Psychiatric comorbidities Treatment planning Treatment optimization Acute treatment Preventive treatment Treatment satisfaction Global Campaign Against Headache 



The authors acknowledge the individuals who contributed to the development and testing of the HURT Questionnaire, including Dr. Manuela Fontebasso; Dott. Francesco S. Mennini; Susan W. Broner, MD; Ms. L. Ulla C. Schultz; and the members of the Lifting The Burden Outcome Measures Working Group. Additionally, we want to thank Daniel Serrano, PhD and Michael L. Reed, PhD for their work on the development and psychometric testing of the HURT Questionnaire, and Frank Andrasik, PhD for contributing psychometric information contained in this review.


Dr. Dawn C. Buse has received honoraria from Allergan Pharmaceuticals, Merck, Inc., MAP Pharmaceuticals, NuPathe, and Novartis. Dr. Timothy J. Steiner has received grants, honoraria, and/or research support from Actavis, AstraZeneca, Bayer Healthcare, and Merck and Co., and is a member of an advisory board to Bayer Healthcare. C. M. Sollars: none. Dr. Rigmor Højland Jensen is a member of the scientific advisory boards of Allergan Pharmaceuticals, ATI, Medotech, Neurocore, and Merck, Inc., and has received honoraria from Pfizer, Allergan, ATI, Medotech, Neurocore, and Merck, Sharpe, & Dohme. Dr. Mohammed A. Al Jumah has received research grants support or honoraria from Merck, Serono, Pfizer, Bayer, and Novartis. Dr. Richard B. Lipton has received grants and/or honoraria from Advanced Bionics, Allergan Pharmaceuticals, Endo Pharmaceuticals, GlaxoSmithKline, Minster, Merck, Inc., Neuralieve, Novartis, OrthoMcNeil, Pfizer, and ProEthics/KOWA.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dawn C. Buse
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • C. Mark Sollars
    • 2
  • Timothy J. Steiner
    • 3
    • 4
  • Rigmor H. Jensen
    • 5
  • Mohammed A. Al Jumah
    • 6
  • Richard B. Lipton
    • 7
  1. 1.Department of NeurologyAlbert Einstein College of MedicineBronxUSA
  2. 2.Montefiore Headache CenterMontefiore Medical CenterBronxUSA
  3. 3.Department of NeuroscienceNorwegian University of Science and TechnologyTrondheimNorway
  4. 4.Imperial College LondonLondonUnited Kingdom
  5. 5.Danish Headache Centre, Department of Neurology, Glostrup HospitalUniversity of CopenhagenCopenhagenDenmark
  6. 6.King Abdullah International Medical Research CenterKing Saud Ben Abdulaziz University for Health SciencesRiyadhSaudi Arabia
  7. 7.Department of Neurology and Department of Epidemiology and Population HealthAlbert Einstein College of MedicineBronxUSA

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