Multidisciplinary treatment for headache in the Canadian healthcare setting

Can J Neurol Sci. 2008 Mar;35(1):46-56. doi: 10.1017/s0317167100007551.


Background/objectives: Multidisciplinary treatment programs are seen as an effective way to treat patients with chronic illness. The purpose of this study was to describe a multidisciplinary headache program which was developed in the Canadian public healthcare setting, and to report on patient perceptions of the program and patient treatment outcomes.

Methods: The Calgary Headache Assessment and Management Program (CHAMP) was developed with initial funding from Alberta Health, and continued with function from the Calgary Health Region. Patient perceptions of the program were obtained with questionnaires. Outcome measures for a cohort of patients who completed the Self-Management Workshop were obtained using standard headache related disability measures.

Results: Patient perceptions of the education session, the Lifestyle Assessment, and the Self-Management Workshop were very positive. Headache Disability Inventory scores fell from 56.2 to 46.3 from baseline to three months post Self-Management Workshop (p < .001). Corresponding scores for the HIT-6 were 63.6 and 58.2 (p < .001).

Conclusions: Multidisciplinary headache treatment programs can be developed in the Canadian public healthcare system. The program described here was well accepted by many patients and perceived to be useful by them. Headache related disability as measured by standard measures was significantly reduced after participation in the program.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Canada / epidemiology
  • Depression / complications
  • Disability Evaluation
  • Headache / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Life Style
  • Nursing
  • Office Visits / statistics & numerical data
  • Pain Clinics / economics
  • Pain Clinics / organization & administration
  • Pain Clinics / trends*
  • Physicians
  • Program Evaluation
  • Relaxation Therapy
  • Self Care
  • Stress, Psychological / etiology
  • Stress, Psychological / psychology