Chiropractic is Effective for MIGRAINES

Friday, August 14th, 2015

Continuing our theme from last week, this wee’s blog has to do with the effectiveness of chiropractic for migraines. 

The International Headache Society (IHS) is the one that sets the mark for what constitutes a migraine. They say that a migraine has to have at least three of these:

  1. One or more reversible aura symptoms indicating focal cerebral cortex dysfunction, brainstem dysfunction or both.
  2. At least one aura symptom developing gradually over four or more minutes, or two symptoms occurring in succession.
  3. No aura symptoms lasting for more than 60 minutes.
  4. Headache after aura, with a free interval of less than 60 minutes.

In addition to the setup on this research project, as chiropractors well know, the cervical spine is very involved in headaches, dizziness, and a ton of other problems. There are a ton of research papers that I have, and am, sharing weekly showing the effectiveness of spinal manipulative therapy on these issues. 

Now that we have that out of the way, let the research talk begin. 

How They Did It:

  • They took 127 subjects that met the criteria set by the IHS for having migraines
  • Half of those patients had chiropractic adjustments
  • Half of those patients were hooked up to an electric stimulation machine with no current going through it for the control group. 
  • The patients filled out headache diaries.


  • Two months of data collection before beginning the treatment.
  • Two months of treatment with a max of 16 adjustments per person.
  • Two month of collecting data after the treatments concluded.

What They Found

  • Those that received adjustments showed statistically significant improvement in migraine frequency, duration, disability, and medication use.
  • After two months of regular chiropractic adjustments, 22% of the participants reported over 90% REDUCTION in migraines.
  • About 50% more patients reported improvements in severity of migraine episodes. 

Wrap Up
Chiropractic has shown through research to have significant effectiveness in treatment of migraines. In this study, 83% of participants reported stress as a major factor in their migraines and it seems that chiropractic care is able to reduce that stress as well as treat the upper neck region specifically. 

Combined, chiropractors reduce the frequency and intensity of migraines. Naturally.