Conflict of Interest: None.
Optimal Use of Acute Headache Medication: A Qualitative Examination of Behaviors and Barriers to Their Performance
Article first published online: 28 JUN 2013
© 2013 American Headache Society
Headache: The Journal of Head and Face Pain
Volume 53, Issue 9, pages 1438–1450, October 2013
How to Cite
Seng, E. K. and Holroyd, K. A. (2013), Optimal Use of Acute Headache Medication: A Qualitative Examination of Behaviors and Barriers to Their Performance. Headache: The Journal of Head and Face Pain, 53: 1438–1450. doi: 10.1111/head.12157
- Issue published online: 1 OCT 2013
- Article first published online: 28 JUN 2013
- Manuscript Accepted: 15 MAY 2013
- Ohio Headache Association
- acute medication;
- medication adherence;
This study aims to qualitatively examine the behaviors required to optimally use acute headache medication and the barriers to successful performance of these behaviors.
The efficacy of drug treatment is partly determined by medication adherence. The adherence literature has focused almost exclusively on the behaviors required to optimally use medications that are taken on a fixed schedule, as opposed to medications taken on an as needed basis to treat acute episodes of symptoms, such as headaches.
Twenty-one people with headache and 15 health care providers participated in qualitative phenomenological interviews that were transcribed and coded by a multidisciplinary research team using phenomenological analysis.
Interviews revealed 8 behaviors required to optimally use acute headache medication, including cross-episode behaviors that people with headache regularly perform to ensure optimal acute headache medication use, and episode-specific behaviors used to treat an individual headache episode. Interviews further revealed 9 barriers that hinder successful performance of these behaviors.
Behaviors required to optimally use acute headache medication were numerous, often embedded in a larger chain of behaviors, and were susceptible to disruption by numerous barriers.