First Contact – Headache in Primary Care

Primary care practitioners are essential to identifying and treating headache disorders, including migraine. That’s why it is imperative they have access to helpful, accurate and timely information from headache specialists to better care for their patients. The goal of First Contact – Headache in Primary Care, powered by the American Headache Society, is to provide educational resources to empower healthcare professionals and improve headache and migraine care.

5 Great Reasons Why You Should Develop Additional Expertise in the Field of Headache Medicine

Family physicians, internists, OBGYNs, pediatricians, PAs, NPs, and other allied healthcare providers can browse a variety of free resources on diagnosis, treatment and more, all curated by leaders in headache medicine. We encourage providers in all stages of their careers to utilize our programming and educational tools to improve patient care.

Watch an overview of all the resources we have to offer.

of patients consult their primary care provider for migraine
of primary care visits in the United States are for migraine

Must-Read Resources

Check out our curated selection of must-read resources on migraine and other headache disorders. We focus on the basics of diagnosing and treating head pain and link out to helpful reference materials that you can bookmark and refer to as needed.

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Bring Headache and Migraine Education to Your Institution

The flagship offering of the Headache in Primary Care program is our one-hour presentation, tailored to your audience’s needs and delivered by experts in headache care.

We provide the speakers, slide materials, and can provide Zoom capabilities for a virtual presentation. In support of the talk, residents will have access to an ever-growing library of resources for managing headache in a primary care setting. 

Video Library

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Phases of Migraine

Most people with migraine will experience four distinct phases during attacks: prodrome, aura, headache and postdrome. Here’s a breakdown of each phase including symptoms and how long they will last.
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Preventive Treatments for Migraine

Most people with migraine will experience four distinct phases during attacks: prodrome, aura, headache and postdrome. Here’s a breakdown of each phase including symptoms and how long they will last.
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Explaining the Importance of Routine

Educating patients with migraine about maintaining a healthy, predictable routine can help them manage their migraine. Here’s how to talk to your patient about establishing a routine.
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Headache 101 with Dr. Andrew Hershey

In this video, Andrew Hershey, MD, PhD, FAHS, discusses the basics of headache diagnostics and treatment, and how to explain them to patients.
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Migraine Symptoms on Non-headache Days

Patients with migraine often experience headache-like symptoms during the period between headache episodes, known as the interictal state. Juliana VanderPluym, MD, FAHS, shares more.
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Changes in Headache History: When to be Concerned

Brian Plato, DO, FAHS, explains which changes in headache history are cause for concern and how clinicians can help.
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Over-the-Counter Medications

Jessica Ailani, MD, FAHS, spoke with us about everything you should know about over-the-counter medications to manage migraine symptoms.
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Clinical Pearls on Migraine Prevention

Preventative measures are especially beneficial for patients with frequent, disabling or long-lasting attacks. Stephanie Nahas, MD, MSEd, FAHS, shares clinical pearls on migraine prevention.

Preventive Migraine Treatment: How to Counsel Patients

Duren Michael Ready, MD, FAHS, discusses counseling patients about their preventive migraine treatment for the most effective results.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Migraine: Q&A with Elizabeth Seng, PhD

Elizabeth Seng, PhD, FAHS, spoke with the American Headache Society about CBT and its place in migraine treatment.

Treating Pediatric Migraine

Lauren Doyle Strauss, DO, FAHS, explains about what providers should consider when treating pediatric migraine.
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Podcasts

The First Contact – Headache In Primary Care podcast breaks down topics in headache medicine for primary care providers and other healthcare professionals seeing patients with migraine and other headache disorders.

 

Treating and Preventing Migraine

What acute and preventive medication options are there for people living with migraine? Dr. Olivia Begasse De Dhaem provides an overview of the different types of medications, from NSAIDS to triptans.

Behavioral Treatment for Migraine

Behavioral treatments for migraine, including biofeedback, cognitive behavioral therapy and relaxation, have shown great effectiveness for migraine. Learn more about these treatments on this episode.

Headache Management over Telemedicine

Dr. Robblee shares tips for preparing a patient for a virtual visit, conducting a neurological exam over video, keeping patients out of the emergency room and more.

Asking the Right Questions to Diagnose Migraine

Dr. Brian Plato explains how providers can diagnose migraine through a systematic set of questions to feel confident in their diagnosis.

Busting Myths About Migraine

Join Dr. Thomas Berk as he busts five migraine myths and introduces a bonus sixth misconception about migraine which he calls “the mother of all myths.”

Surprising Truths about Migraine Epidemiology

How does this affect family planning and pregnancy? Hear from Dr. Tracy Grossman on helping women manage migraine through pregnancy.

Special Populations: Migraine during Pregnancy

How does this affect family planning and pregnancy? Hear from Dr. Tracy Grossman on helping women manage migraine through pregnancy.

Special Populations: Migraine in Children

Migraine affects 39 million people in the United States, and one in 11 children have migraine. On this episode, pediatric neurologist Dr. Lauren Strauss explains diagnosis, lifestyle changes and treatments for children with migraine.

Red Flags in Headache: What if it isn't Migraine?

About 80-90% of the headaches are primary headaches, but the other 10-20% are secondary—caused by something else, usually an underlying condition or side effect of medication. This episode, Dr. Rebecca Michael dives into the “red flags” to look out for when making a diagnosis.

Prescribing a Migraine-friendly Lifestyle

Patients are often surprised by how much a lifestyle change can improve the severity and frequency of their migraine attacks. Find out what kinds of changes, from diet to exercise, Dr. Fred Cohen recommends sharing with patients.