Current patterns of primary care provider practices for the treatment of post-traumatic headache in active duty military settings

Rosemay A. Remigio-Baker*, Seth Kiser, Hamid Ferdosi, Emma Gregory, Scot Engel, Sean Sebesta, Daniel Beauchamp, Saafan Malik, Ann I. Scher, Sidney R. Hinds

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Objective To provide a preliminary assessment of the current clinical practice for the treatment of post-traumatic headache following concussion in military primary health care settings. Background Headache is one of the most common symptoms post-concussion; however, little is known of the current clinical practices of primary care providers (on the treatment of post-traumatic headache), particularly in military settings. Methods Study participants were primary care providers (n = 65) who treated active duty Service members suffering from post-traumatic headache at two military installations. Qualitative data gathered via semi-structured interviews were used to describe provider practices and experience in treating patients with post-traumatic headache. Results Some patterns of care across primary care providers treating post-traumatic headache were consistent with the Department of Defense-recommended clinical recommendation (e.g., recommendation of both pharmacological and non-pharmacological treatment [89.4%]; engaging in follow-up care [100%]). Differences existed in timing of follow-up from initial visit [16.9% reporting within 24 hours; 21.5% reporting within 48–72 hours; and 26.2% reporting more than 1 week], the factors contributing to the type of care given (e.g., symptomatology [33.0%], injury characteristic [24.2%], patient characteristic [13.2%]) and the need for referral to higher level of care (e.g., symptomatology [44.6%], treatment failure [25.0%]). These variations may be indicative of individualized treatment which would be compliant with best clinical practice. Conclusion The results of this study demonstrate the current clinical practice in military primary care settings for the treatment of post-traumatic headache which can potentially inform and improve implementation of provider training and education.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0236762
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number7 July
StatePublished - Jul 2020
Externally publishedYes


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