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Complementary Alternatives Therapies

Laser Treatment

  • By Jenn Tyborski

    Earlier, my mother mentioned to me that a co-worker of my dad has almost identical chronic migraines to me. Apparently, the woman had taken prescription medications for years to no avail, and has recently come across cold laser treatment for her migraines. Granted, I’m a mere 21 years of age, but in my almost ten years of headaches, I’ve never heard of laser treatment. Doing a quick search, the most reliable source I could find was from the National Headache Foundation (NHF). The brief article basically stated the treatment as not being researched or studied at all, and therefore does not have any data to show for it’s reliability and effectiveness.
    Article link here:

    Has anyone heard of laser treatment for headaches/migraines? I’m interested to learn more; however, I’m very hesitant about this newer treatment. If anyone knows of anymore information regarding this treatment, would you please share? My parents are interested by this possibility as the co-worker claims to be migraine free. Yet, I’m very uneasy about this form of treatment.

    Thoughts? Information? What concerns might you have? If you think this would be a good thing, why? And although we do not know what risks or side effects there may be, to what extent would you risk to end your headaches, but accept the danger that may come from it? Untreated, my chronic migraines are quite severe (no aura), but I don’t feel I would be able to jeopardize everything I’ve worked for so far in my life when there are other treatments that help.

  • By Katie M. Golden Moderator

    I have not used cold laser therapy to treat my Migraines. After doing more research, it seems that this is used for a variety of pain issues including carpal tunnel syndrome, certain types of cancer, lymphedema, musculoskeletal dysfunction, myofaiscial pain syndrome, neurological dysfunctions, rheumatoid arthritis, and tinnitus. It is only just now being used in Headache patients.

    Like you said there really isn’t too much information on this type of therapy. It seems like most insurance plans don’t cover it yet. Thinking about starting a new treatment can be extremely overwhelming and is a very personal decision. I would just caution you to make a logical decision after doing a lot of reseach (including talking to your dad’s coworker in person). Sometimes we can make emotional decisions because we just want something to finally give us relief.

    Are you seeing a Headache Specialist? Migraine/headache disorder specialists have extra board certification in headache medicine. While neurologists may be fine doctors they have a hard time being experts in one area because they treat so many different conditions like multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, stroke, Parkinson’s and others. Here is a list of Headache Specialists that could maybe help you in discussing the benefits of cold laser therapy.

    If you haven’t already tried these, you may want to consider Botox as a Migraine treatment or read-up on a Transcranial Magnetic Stimulator, recently approved by the FDA.