Migraine and other headaches and pulsed magnetic field effects

Rainer B. Pelka, Ph.D., Christof Jaenicke, M.D., Joerg Gruenwald, Ph.D., Berlin, Germany

This experimental placebo-controlled trial assessed the efficacy of 4 weeks of pulsed magnetic-field therapy (16 Hz, 5 uTs) delivered through a small device, on different types of headache and migraine. 82 patients were randomly assigned to receive either the active treatment or placebo (n = 41 each). All were characterized according to one of the following seven diagnoses: migraine = Migraine and magnetic therapy effects, migraine combined with tension, headaches = Magnetic therapy effects on headaches, headaches with tension, headaches around the eyes, headaches related to the weather, posttraumatic aches and other. Efficacy was assessed in terms of the duration, severity and frequency of migraine and headache attacks as well as the ability to concentrate. Data on 77 patients were analyzed. In the active-treatment group, all assessed criteria had significantly improved at the end of the trial (P<0.0001 vs. baseline and placebo). 76 % of active-treatment patients experienced clear or very clear relief of their complaints. Only 1 placebo patient (2.5 %) felt some relief; 8 % noted slight and 2 % reported a significant worsening of symptoms. No side effects were noted.

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