Doctors Who Treat Migraines - Patient Education
Initial migraine consultations with healthcare providers will most likely be with the physicians you have an ongoing relationship with. These can include:
- General Practitioner - Deals with prevention, discovery and treatment of illnesses in all age categories
- Internist - Focuses on diagnosis, treatment and prevention of adult illness
- Gynecologist - Deals with female health
- Gerontologist - Deals with senior or elder health
- Nurse Practitioner - Focuses on prevention, wellness and education of patients about health and health choices
Once the diagnosis of migraines has been made, a team approach may be established. The team typically consists of:
- Headache Specialist - Educates patients on how to alter their lifestyle and home environment to suppress migraines by:
- Pinpointing triggers and avoiding them
- Finding activities that decrease the risk
- Implementing coping methods (like biofeedback and meditation) to cope with pain
- Allergist - Specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of immune system diseases, allergic diseases and asthma. This doctor can isolate allergens or substances that causes reactions and can trigger symptoms including migraines.
- Nutritionist/Dietician - Devises meal plans that avoids food sensitivities responsible for headache attacks and which foods are helpful in decreasing the headache occurrence.
- Neurologist - Deals with the diagnosis and treatment of nervous system disorders involving the brain, spinal cord and peripheral nerves.
- Radiologist - A doctor who uses imaging techniques to diagnose and treat diseases seen in the body. The radiologist will rule out any causes of migraines such as aneurysms, tumors, growths and abnormal blood flow to the brain.
- Alternative/Complementary Practitioner - A physician who integrates conventional medicine with a focus on the interactions between the mind and body including yoga, acupuncture, meditation, deep breathing exercises, hypnotherapy, aromatherapy, herbs, guided imagery and tai chi.
- Anesthesiologist/Pain Management - Doctors who progress to specialize in treatment of pain, including trigger point injections, nerve blocks, pumps and oral medications.
- Physiatrists - Rehabilitation doctors who treat pain with therapy involving physical and occupational therapy, devising exercise plans to treat headaches. Some may also use medication pumps, nerve blocks and implant stimulators.
- Psychiatrists - Doctors who may offer behavioral therapies, hypnosis, biofeedback techniques and family or group counseling