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Caffeine as a Risk Factor for Chronic Daily
Headache: A Population-based Study
Scher AI, Stewart WF, Lipton RB.
Posted: January 2006  
Neurology 2004;63:2022-2027

Objective:   To investigate the possible association of dietary caffeine consumption and medicinal caffeine use with chronic daily headache (CDH).

Methods:   Population-based cases and controls reported more than 180 headache days per year. Current and past dietary caffeine consumption and medication use for headaches were based on detailed self-report. High caffeine exposure was defined as being in the upper quartile of dietary consumption or using a caffeine-containing over-the-counter analgesic as the preferred headache treatment.

Results:   In comparison with episodic headache controls, CDH cases were more likely overall to have been high caffeine consumers before onset of CDH. No association was found for current caffeine consumption. In secondary analyses, associations were confined to younger women and those with chronic episodic headaches without physician consultation and of recent onset.

Conclusion:   Dietary and medicinal caffeine consumption appears to be a modest risk factor for chronic daily headache onset, regardless of headache type.