A headache specialist is someone who specializes in the diagnosis
and treatment of painful disorders of the head, face and neck.
This is not to be confused with nerve block or pain clinics
who attempt to treat headaches.
The Neurologist: As far as the Michigan
Headache Clinic is concerned, a headache specialist must be
a well-trained neurologist with special certification in Headache
Medicine. We believe that a neurologist can best interpret
symptoms which relate to the nervous system. Many dangerous
conditions can produce headache as a presenting sign and careful
investigation is often needed to make a safe and accurate
Credentials: Not everyone who practices
neurology is actually certified by the American Board of Psychiatry
and Neurology, which is the official Neurology board. Not
all neurology graduates are even eligible to take the arduous
certification examination and only a portion will pass it.
To check neurology credentials, you may use the American
Board of Medical Specialities (ABMS) website, at no charge.
. The ABMS exists to protect patients from unqualified practitioners.
Likewise, not everone who claims to be a headache specialist
is actually certified in Headache Medicine. The United Council
of Neurological Subspecialties (UCNS)
is the official accrediting board for headache specialists.
You can find a list of certified headache specialists here.
In summary, Headache Medicine incorporates
the disciplines of general neurology, psychiatry and internal
medicine and adds the very specific discipline of treating
Dr. Messina is certified in Neurology by the American Board
of Psychiatry and Neurology and in Headache Medicine by the
United Council of Neurological Subspecialties.