The results do mirror what Lipton has seen in his practice. "This shows that [the treatment] can give chronic migraine sufferers their lives back."
Dr. Robert Duarte, director of the Pain Center at North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System in Manhasset, N.Y., said that the new device should not be considered a first-line treatment for migraine, however.
"You need to be evaluated by a headache specialist, and make sure all treatment options are tried before installing a stimulator, but it is an option and there is definitely evidence that it works," he said. Duarte is not affiliated with the new study.
"It is not a cure, but a treatment option that can reduce frequency and intensity of headaches in some people," Duarte added. Doctors can also do a trial run using an external stimulator to see if it will work before implanting the device, he said.
Find out more about migraines at the Migraine Research Foundation.
SOURCES: Stephen D. Silberstein, M.D., director, Jefferson Headache Center, Philadelphia; Joel Saper, founder and director, Michigan Head Pain and Neurological Institute, Ann Arbor, Mich.; Richard B. Lipton, director, Headache Center, Albert Einstein College of Medicine/Montefiore Medical Center, Bronx, N.Y.; Robert Duarte, M.D., director, Pain Center, North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System, Manhasset, N.Y.; June 23, 2011, presentation, International Headache Congress, Berlin
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