11/25/2013

The American Headache Society issued new guidelines discouraging providers from routinely ordering brain scans for patients with stable headaches that meet the criteria for migraine. The group also discouraged the long-term or frequent use of over-the-counter pain medications for headaches, and urged providers to avoid prescribing opioid painkillers and drugs that contain the barbiturate butalbital for patients who get headaches often because of serious long-term risks. "Our aim is to encourage doctors and patients to think carefully about medical care that can be harmful or unnecessary," said Dr. Elizabeth Loder, the group's president.

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