Corticosteroids for Cluster Headaches - Topic Overview
Corticosteroids (such as prednisone or
dexamethasone) are referred to as "transitional" medicines for the treatment of
cluster headaches because they are sometimes used to
break a cycle of cluster headaches. They are paired with medicines that stop
(abortive) or prevent (prophylactic) additional headaches during a headache
cycle. Often, within 2 to 4 days after starting treatment with corticosteroids,
you will become headache-free. By the time the corticosteroids are
stopped-their use is often tapered within 6 to 8 weeks of starting and then
discontinued-the medicines used to prevent cluster headaches, such as
verapamil, have taken effect.
Corticosteroids are not used over a
long period of time because they can cause serious side effects,
The symptoms and discomfort from migraines can go far beyond excruciating head pain. Many people who get headaches, especially those who get migraines, also experience vision problems, dizziness, and vertigo.