Change search
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf
Psychoactive substances as a last resort—a qualitative study of self-treatment of migraine and cluster headaches
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Department of Social and Psychological Studies (from 2013).
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Department of Social and Psychological Studies (from 2013).ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5668-0469
2017 (English)In: Harm Reduction Journal, ISSN 1477-7517, E-ISSN 1477-7517, Vol. 14, no 60Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background: Treatment resistant cluster headache and migraine patients are exploring alternative treatments online. The aim of this study was to improve comprehension regarding the use of non-established or alternative pharmacological treatments used by sufferers of cluster headaches and migraines.

Methods: A qualitative thematic analysis of the users’ own accounts presented in online forum discussions were conducted. The forum boards https://shroomery.org/, http://bluelight.org, and https://clusterbusters.org/ met the inclusion criteria and were used for the study.

Results: The analysis resulted in six themes: a desperate need for effective treatments; the role of the forum—finding alternative treatments and community support; alternative treatment substances; dosage and regimens; effects and treatment results; and adverse effects. The results provide an insight into why, how, and by which substances and methods sufferers seek relief from cluster headache and migraines.

Conclusions: These patients are in a desperate and vulnerable situation, and illicit psychoactive substances are often considered a last resort. There appeared to be little or no interest in psychoactive effects per se as these were rather tolerated or avoided by using sub-psychoactive doses. Primarily, psilocybin, lysergic acid diethylamide, and related psychedelic tryptamines were reportedly effective for both prophylactic and acute treatment of cluster headache and migraines. Treatment results with cannabis were more unpredictable. No severe adverse events were reported, but it was observed how desperation sometimes spurred risky behavior when obtaining and testing various treatment alternatives. The forum discourse mainly revolved around maximizing treatment results and minimizing potential harms. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
BioMed Central, 2017. Vol. 14, no 60
Keywords [en]
Migraine, Cluster headache, Alternative treatments, Psychedelic tryptamines, Harm reduction, Internet support groups, Discussion forum
National Category
Psychology (excluding Applied Psychology)
Research subject
Psychology with an emphasis on medical psychology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-63840DOI: 10.1186/s12954-017-0186-6ISI: 000409075700001OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-63840DiVA, id: diva2:1143010
Available from: 2017-09-20 Created: 2017-09-20 Last updated: 2019-11-08

Open Access in DiVA

fulltext(499 kB)246 downloads
File information
File name FULLTEXT01.pdfFile size 499 kBChecksum SHA-512
5435947d4f383b2b03a4f21ba53b845a79e0c804dcc34a71f2ea7b90beae60605b7eacef548feaf0a100aa451ed9264f9815a6a49bbfd8ca997e59243ad3b4a0
Type fulltextMimetype application/pdf

Other links

Publisher's full text

Authority records BETA

Andersson, MartinKjellgren, Anette

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Andersson, MartinKjellgren, Anette
By organisation
Department of Social and Psychological Studies (from 2013)
In the same journal
Harm Reduction Journal
Psychology (excluding Applied Psychology)

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
Total: 246 downloads
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

doi
urn-nbn

Altmetric score

doi
urn-nbn
Total: 334 hits
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf