Posture is a Problem in Headache and Migraine Sufferers

July 5, 2009 by dean · Leave a Comment 

Headache and migraine sufferers have postural abnormalities

Headache and migraine sufferers have postural abnormalities

Headache and migraine sufferers are twice more likely to have postural problems.

Twenty four migraineurs, 24 tension headache patients and 24 with both migraine and tension-type headache were assessed. Postural abnormalities were identified in 90% of the headache and migraine patients, compared to 46% of controls. A forward head or poking chin posture has been linked to cervicogenic (neck), suggesting that cervicogenic (neck) dysfunction is also common to migraine and tension headache.

Furthermore 75% of the headache and migraine patients presented with trigger points in the neck compared to 46% of controls. Joint abnormalities are a common finding in cervicogenic headache; interestingly, they are also prevalent in migraineurs and tension headache sufferers.

These two findings support my clinical experience which indicates that cervicogenic disorders are part of the migraine and tension headache process and that examination of the neck should be mandatory for headache and migraine sufferers.



(Marcus DA, Scharff L,Mercer S,Turk DC. Abnormalities in Chronic Headache: A Controlled Comparison of Headache Diagnostic Groups. Headache 1999;39(1);21-27

Watson DH, Trott PH. Cervical headache: an investigation of natural head posture and upper cervical flexor muscle performance. Cephalalgia 1993;13:272-284)

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About dean
Consultant Headache & Migraine Physiotherapist; International Teacher; Director, The Headache Clinic & Watson Headache Institute; PhD Candidate Murdoch University, Western Australia; Adjunct Lecturer, Masters Program, Physiotherapy School, University of South Australia; MAppSc(Res) GradDipAdvManipTher Experienced health practitioners trained in the Watson Headache Approach perform the examination and treatment techniques developed by Dean Watson. These techniques are based on his extensive experience of 7000 headache patients (21,000 hours) over 21 years and are now taught internationally. For your nearest practitioner who has completed training in the ‘Watson Headache Approach’ please refer to the ‘Practitioner Directory’.

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