Occipital Nerve Stimulation

Occipital Nerve Stimulation

Your treatment team will work with you to find the right approach for treating your headaches, and may recommend a combination of pharmaceutical treatments, changes to diet and other recommendations.

If these aren’t working for you, your team may recommend occipital nerve stimulation, a treatment for migraine headaches that requires a surgical implant that delivers mild electrical stimulation to the occipital nerve. You doctor will implant a small device under your skin which has electrodes near your occipital nerve and a battery pack that is placed under the skin.  This is very similar to a small pacemaker. The device sends a slight electrical stimulation to your nerve which can be controlled by a device that will be given to you. A trial can be done before permanently implanting this device.  The treatment should reduce the headache pain you are experiencing and empower you in controlling the stimulation.

This is a surgical procedure, and is recommended for patients who experience severe and chronic pain. You will typically be discharged and sent home the same day of your implant surgery, but you will likely require follow-up for device adjustments. 

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Northwell Health Headache Center

The Headache Center is dedicated to world-class diagnosis and treatment of neurological diseases and disorders.