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The Role of Manual Therapies in the Treatment of Headache Disorders

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Purpose of Review

A comprehensive headache treatment plan typically requires both medication and non-medication treatment strategies. Manual therapies offer another therapeutic approach to headache treatment. This article reviews the evidence for manual therapies in the treatment of headache disorders.

Recent Findings

Current evidence shows potential benefit from myofascial trigger point injections, myofascial release, and massage for the treatment of various headache types. There is also evidence for strain counterstrain technique, ischemic compression, and spinal manipulative therapies for cervicogenic headache.


Although larger randomized clinical trials are necessary for many of these modalities, recent findings show that manual therapies could be an important tool for the treatment of some headache disorders.

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Correspondence to Sheena Pillai.

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Pillai, S., Zhang, N. The Role of Manual Therapies in the Treatment of Headache Disorders. Curr Neurol Neurosci Rep 23, 399–405 (2023).

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