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Treatment of Chronic Daily Posttraumatic Headache With Divalproex Sodium


Address all correspondence to Dr. Russell C. Packard, Department of Neurology, Texas Tech University, Health Sciences Center, Lubbock, TX 79430.


Objective.—To determine the effectiveness of divalproex sodium in the treatment of chronic daily posttraumatic headaches.

Background.—Divalproex sodium has been found to be useful for the treatment of migraine and chronic daily headache. No studies have been done to evaluate effectiveness in posttraumatic headache.

Methods.—A retrospective review was done of 100 patients treated with divalproex for chronic daily posttraumatic headache of 2 months or longer.

Results.—Sixty percent of patients with chronic posttraumatic headache had mild to moderate improvement in their headaches after at least 1 month of divalproex sodium. Forty percent either showed no response (26%) or discontinued treatment because of side effects (14%). Fifty-eight percent of patients showing improvement had a change in headache pattern from daily to episodic.

Conclusions.—Divalproex sodium appears to be safe and effective for treatment of patients with persistent, chronic daily posttraumatic headaches.