Here are some CAM highlights for migraine and fibromyalgia from the American Academy of Pain Management (AAPM) 19th Annual Clinical Meeting.

The article reviews all treatment options, but is short on references for CAM. So, I added them here.


  • Dr. Lawrence Robbins from Rush Medical College in Chicago, Illinois advises to pay attention to caffeine ingestion.
  • Small amounts of caffeine can help headaches — 150-200 mg, the amount in a single cup of coffee, is usually enough.
  • However, caffeine tolerance can develop.
  • Some people who miss their routine cups of coffee develop headaches or depression due to caffeine withdrawal.
  • Other treatments to consider


  • Dr. Philip Mease from Swedish Hospital Medical Center in Seattle, Washington recommended the following nonpharmacologic therapies.
    • Aerobic exercise
    • Cognitive-behavioral therapy
    • Patient education
    • Strength training
    • Acupuncture
    • Biofeedback
    • Balneotherapy
    • Hypnotherapy

Also, the state of the science for fibromyalgia is evaluated here and here.

The bottom line?
You can read these recommendations in the context of overall treatment on Medscape.

Dr. Robbins concluded, “We are not treating headaches, we are treating people and trying to enhance quality of life.”

The same can be said about fibromyalgia.

12/30/08 11:42 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.