32.6 - Management of Headaches

Course Description

This course provides a comprehensive overview of primary (migraine headache and tension-type headache) and secondary (cervicogenic headache, occipital neuralgia, and post-traumatic headache) headache disorders. The physiology and underlying mechanisms of both primary and secondary headaches is discussed in combination with screening considerations for red flags. Subsequently, the inclusion criteria, according to the International Classification of Headache Disorders, for each of the 5 headache types listed above are provided. Then, the evaluation of patients with headaches with or without associated neck pain is thoroughly discussed, including the evaluation of musculoskeletal impairments of the cervical region while distinguishing between the expected clinical presentations more specific to the various types of headaches. This course also presents information on the specific additional evaluation methods for individuals with post-traumatic headaches, discussing the application of aerobic testing as well as the vestibular-ocular examination process. Finally, the authors review the management of patients with primary and secondary headache disorders, including addressing headache triggers and associated symptoms.

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Course Overview

Course Format: Online with an option to purchase the print version

Contact Hours: 15 contact hours

State Approval: AOPT courses are accepted in all states plus the District of Columbia, as allowed by the type of course requirements in state regulations. A small number of states require APTA to seek pre-approval of courses. The approval codes for these states can be found here. Always check with your State Licensing Board to confirm contact hours offered.

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Online Only Online + Hard Copy
AOPT Member $105 $130
Non-AOPT Member $205 $230

Cancellation Policy

Due to the automation of our learning management system allowing you instant access to the online content and the immediate order placement for a plus print product, there are no refunds after an order is placed.

International Shipping Policy

International shipping is NOT available when purchasing a plus print copy of our independent study courses. The online copy allows you instant access to any course with the ability to print a pdf copy. Note: APO and FPO addresses are serviced by the USPS and the Military Postal Service Agency and are available for plus print shipping.

Management of Headaches

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Course Objectives

Upon completion of this monograph series, the participant will be able to:

  1. List common headache diagnoses that would be classified as primary headaches, secondary headaches, or neuropathies/neuralgias.
  2. Describe the diagnostic criteria for various types of headaches including migraine, tension-type headache, cervicogenic headache, occipital neuralgia, and post-traumatic headache.
  3. Understand the proposed pathoanatomical mechanisms behind migraine, tension-type headache, cervicogenic headache, occipital neuralgia, and headache attributed to trauma to the head and/or neck.
  4. Employ a headache diary in the evaluation of headaches to determine headache triggers and help develop an individualized plan of care.
  5. Perform a musculoskeletal evaluation for primary and secondary headache disorders.
  6. Create a treatment plan integrating physical therapy and other healthcare providers as needed in the multidisciplinary management of individuals with headache.

Topics and Authors

  • Headache: Physiology and Mechanisms Underlying Differential Diagnosis
    Erica Sigman, PT, DPT, OCS; Lori Ginoza, PT, DPT, NCS
  • Headache Evaluation
    Erica Sigman, PT, DPT, OCS; Lori Ginoza, PT, DPT, NCS
  • Headache Treatment
    Erica Sigman, PT, DPT, OCS; Lori Ginoza, PT, DPT, NCS