The National Migraine Centre is located in West London at:
226 Walmer Road,
We are a 10-minute walk from Latimer Road or Holland Park tube stations. Details about how to get to the Clinic are available on our website at the contact us page.
Who are we?
* We are a charity not a private clinic accepting patients of all ages from the UK and abroad
* We provide face-to-face appointments with a doctor for headache sufferers who can refer themselves
* We report on our full assessment, diagnosis and personalised management plans which are given to the patient and GP
* We provide education about headache and migraine diagnosis and management
* We are involved in headache related research
* We actively engage with media and government on headache issues
The National Migraine Centre is a medical charity (and not a ‘private clinic’) providing:
- Clinical assessment and management advice for all headache sufferers
- Education and training for GPs, doctors in training and other healthcare professionals
- Research and writing on headache related matters
- Engagement with the media and government on headache issues
Patients coming to the clinic are assessed over a 40 minute appointment as a result of which a diagnosis is given and recommendations made for treatment.
We practice orthodox and evidence based medicine. We do not offer “ alternative” remedies except insofar as an evidence base exists for any of them (so for instance we might recommend magnesium salts and vitamin B2 for prevention, but would not recommend homeopathy). Each patient and their GP receive a letter detailing our findings and recommendations sent out within a few days of their consultation.
We advise patients to discuss the results of this assessment with their GP and ask the GP to prescribe advised medications. Occasionally we may give the patient a private prescription (as a charity we cannot offer NHS prescriptions) if there is an urgent need to start medication.
If the GP has any concerns or questions over what is being proposed, we would welcome the opportunity to discuss management issues (via phone or email usually) between the GP and the specialist who has seen the patient. This might include discussions of medication: quite a number of medications commonly used in migraine treatment are unlicensed for this purpose, and we are happy to support colleagues in their decision-making.
Patients may self-refer or be referred to the centre. In either case it is helpful (though not essential) to have a brief referral letter from the GP summarising the issues. Perhaps most importantly a list of current and past medications and dosages helps us make recommendations for effective treatment in the full knowledge of what has already been tried.
Our headache specialists are mainly GPs or Neurologists, all with a headache subspecialty and training. Details on individual doctors are listed here.
Headache diagnosis advice and care
Uniquely as a charity we offer clinical care and advice to individuals with headache through access to a team of doctors with a specialist interest in the management of migraine, cluster headaches and other types of headache. We welcome patients of any age from across the UK and abroad.
Helping clinical colleagues to better diagnose and manage headaches is an important part of our mission. Please contact us if you would like us to speak to GP registrar training sessions, GP surgery CME meetings or other continuing medical education activities. We are also able to support referral management and develop management pathways. We offer training based on best evidence care for headache disorders. Our service has been involved in commissioning and we are happy to help define headache pathways in localities.
We offer a programme of ‘masterclasses’ on a variety of headache related topics every year aimed at GPs and GP registrars, but available to any interested clinicians including nurses, physiotherapists, osteopaths and pharmacists.
We welcome approaches from individual doctors, medical students or other healthcare professionals who wish to improve their headache management to visit our clinics and develop their own skills and understanding of headache disorders.
The centre has been involved in research since its inception over 35 years ago. Much of the current understanding of hormonal headaches is based on the work of Professor Anne MacGregor when she was lead clinician at the centre. We continue to be actively involved in research about headache disorders. Patients visiting the centre may be invited to take part in research trials. Taking part is entirely at their choice and refusal would not affect their treatment in any way. All our research has been approved by the relevant ethics committees and is intended for publication in peer reviewed journals.
We have close ties with Migraine Trust, Migraine Action, OUCH –the Organisation for the Understanding of Cluster Headache, and BASH, the British Society for the Study of Headache, We also have links with Headache Specialist Clinicians at the Royal Free Hospital, The National Hospital for Nervous Diseases, Great Ormond Street Hospital and Kings College Hospital.