Headstrong: A Pilot Study of a CD-ROM Intervention for Recurrent Pediatric Headache

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To empirically evaluate a minimal therapist contact CD-ROM pain management program for recurrent pediatric headache developed as part of this study.


Participants were 37 children aged 7–12 attending a pediatric neurology clinic for evaluation of recurrent headache. Children who were randomly assigned to the treatment group worked through the CD-ROM program on home computers for 4 weeks following baseline assessment, whereas those assigned to the wait-list group continued following the prescriptions of their neurologist. Data on daily headache activity and headache-related disability were collected at baseline and up to 3 months after treatment.


Children who received the adjunctive CD-ROM program had significant improvements in headache activity above and beyond those in the control group. Results provide initial support for the utility of adding an adjunctive CD-ROM psychological intervention to standard medical care for recurrent pediatric headache and potentially other chronic pain conditions in children.

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