- Enhanced mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR+) is more effective than stress management for headache (SHM) in reducing the frequency of and disability from episodic migraines.
Why this matters
- Medication can increase headache frequency, so incorporating nonpharmacologic interventions could be beneficial for patients with episodic migraine.
- A randomized, assessor-blind study of 98 patients (age range, 18-65 years) with episodic migraine, who were randomly assigned to receive either MBSR+ (n=50) or SMH (n=48) treatment.
- Outcome: reduction in headache.
- Funding: National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health; National Institutes of Health.
- At week 20, MBSR+ vs SMH showed significantly higher:
- Reduction in headache days (4.6 vs 6.0 days; P=.04).
- Treatment response rate (52% vs 23%; P=.004).
- Reduction in headache-related disability (59.6 to 54.6 vs 59.6 to 57.5; P=.02).
- No significant difference in pain intensity between MBSR+ and SMH (P=.63).
- Results may not be generalizable.
- Single-center study.
Coauthored with Vijay Rathod, PhD.