Neuroimaging guidelines in nonacute headaches: Treatment guideline subcommittee of the Taiwan headache society

Yen Yu Chen, Hsi Ming Chen, Wei Hung Chen, Wei Ta Chen, Jong Ling Fuh*, Kai Dih Juang, Lian Hui Lee, Yi Chu Liao, Kao Chang Lin, Hung Pin Tseng, Jing Jane Tsai, Po Jen Wang, Shuu Jiun Wang, Chun Pai Yang, Chun Hing Yiu, Zin An Wu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


The Treatment Guideline Subcommittee of the Taiwan Headache Society evaluated the indication of neuroimaging for nonacute headache according to the principles of evidence-based medicine. We have assessed the qualities of studies, levels of evidence, and referred to other guidelines proposed by Western countries. After several panel discussions, we merged opinions from the subcommittee members and proposed a Taiwan consensus. Neuroimaging is not necessary for patients with nonacute and recurrent migraine or tension-type headache when there is no recent change of headache characteristics and neurological examinations are normal. Neuroimaging is suggested for patients who have headaches with abnormal neurological examinations. For patients who are diagnosed as having cluster headache and have never received neuroimaging studies, or patients whose headache characteristics are atypical for cluster headaches, neuroimaging studies should be considered. Neuroimaging is also recommended for patients with cough headache, exertional headache and headache associated with sexual activity. Although the resolution of MRI is superior to CT, evidence is insufficient to make recommendation regarding the choice of MRI or CT for the evaluation of nonacute headache patient. Clinicians should make a judgment by themselves according to the patient's specific conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)137-144
Number of pages8
JournalActa Neurologica Taiwanica
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2010


  • Computed tomography
  • Headache
  • Magnetic resonance imaging


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