The Czech Headache Society
The Czech Headache Society is an organisation of the Czech Neurological Society of Jan Evangelista Purkyně (JEP). It was founded by doctors of neurology who, apart from general neurology, also devote themselves to headache problems. The objective of this society is to extend knowledge about the correct diagnosis of separate types of headaches and their treatment.
The objective of the section in the period to follow is to extend contacts with the professional and lay public, and provide information through the Internet for those interested.
The ideal objective for which, however, a lot of work still has to be done, is to find the relevant treatment for each individual patient who comes to his doctor with a headache.
History of the Czech Headache Society
In spite of the great importance attached to headaches in the everyday practice of a neurologist, it was only on September 16, 1994, during the first headache symposium in Hradec Králové that the section for headache diagnostics and treatment was founded under the Czech Neurological Society. The committee of the Czech Neurological Society approved the name "Czech Headache Society" (CHS) for contacts abroad. Similar specialised national societies have existed abroad under different names since the 1970s and their activities are remarkable.
The International Headache Society (IHS) has existed since 1982 and publishes an excellent magazine entitled "Cephalalgia", which each duly subscribing HIS member receives on a regular basis. The work of the IHS work group under Professor Olesen of Denmark is also currently a valid classification of headaches dating from 1988, which is a generally recognised norm for diagnostics and research activity in the field of headaches. The European Headache Federation (EHF) as founded in 1991 in Venice.
We based the founding of the CHS in 1994 on the following facts:
- In the Czech Republic no such single specialised organisation had even existed before that would be engaged in the problems of headaches.
- In the Czech Republic there was no larger centre for headache diagnostics and treatment (in England and Italy, for example, several such centres were already in existence).
- The existing headache information centres had not proceeded in a uniform manner in the diagnostics and particularly in the treatment of headaches.
- The new HIS headache classification was not established, and the consistently proposed classification charts and diagnostic criteria were not used.
- There was no standard, binding algorithm for the treatment procedure of primary headaches.
- No headache education system existed in the Czech Republic.
- Research activities dealing with headache problems were scant and uncoordinated.
- The state authorities provided no effective financial support.
- The availability of specialised or professional literature in the form of magazines and books was highly inadequate.
- We lacked adequate contact with the European Headache Federation and the International Headache Society (IHS and EHF).
During the five-year activity of our society, we have managed to fulfil some of our intentions:
- Currently 17 headache diagnostics and treatment centres operate in the Czech Republic primarily engaged in more difficult cases of primary headache treatment.
- We have organised 4 headache symposia.
- We have organised over 20 refresher seminars dealing with acute and chronic headaches for neurologists and general practitioners.
- CHS members have repeatedly appeared in the media, on radio and television, to talk about the problem of migraine and other types of headache.
- Articles dealing with the diagnostics and differential diagnostics of migraine and other types of headache have been published in professional magazines.
- The problems of migraine, its differential diagnostics and therapy have also been the subject of several monographs and brochures.
- Five members of the CHS Committee have full membership of the IHS and subscribe to its official magazine "Cephalalgia".
- The committee of the section for headache diagnostics and treatment has drawn up a standard questionnaire for the information centres and a recording calendar for patients. These materials are also available to any one interested.
- In recent years the interest has increased of neurologists and general practitioners in the diagnostics and treatment of migraine and other types of headache.
- Currently the Czech Section for Headache Diagnostics and Treatment has over 200 members, primarily from the ranks of neurologists, and is also a member of the IHS and EHF.
- The Czech Headache Society Committee Chairman, Doc. MUDr. Gerhard Waberžinek, Csc. is also a member of the IHS council and Dr. Petr Dočekal is a delegate of the EHF.