Leading Integrated Healthcare


Dr Brian Kaplan on Headaches & Migraines

posted on 8th September 2012 by Dr Brian Kaplan

People suffering from migraine headaches will be treated in much the same way as people suffering from cluster headaches or chronic headaches in general. As described in the section on headaches, Autogenic Therapy, Classical Homeopathy, food intolerances, and environmental factors will all be explored. Which holistic approach will predominate will always depend on the individual circumstances of the case, my personal assessment and what feels right for you after we have discussed all possibilities.

No health practitioner can honestly claim that migraines and chronic headaches are easy to treat. Sometimes quite a lot of exploration is needed before the correct treatment is found. Nevertheless, my personal view on this is that it’s well worth trying hard to find an approach that will either eliminate or greatly ameliorate the headaches. Once it is found, you are likely to be able to use it indefinitely.

Of course it is absolutely essential to make sure that any headache is not caused by a serious physical disease. Most headaches are not but I’ll need to know these illnesses have been excluded or I’ll suggest that we do some tests to exclude them. When we feel sure that the headaches are not due to such an illness there is a lot that can be done for most headaches.


Stress Reduction

Chronic headaches are often related to stress so a course of Autogenic Therapy, a highly effective stress-releasing and stress-proofing technique will usually be recommended in conjunction with other therapy.

Classical Homeopathy

I will take a full history from you asking many questions about the headaches as well as some questions about you in general. The idea is to find a homeopathic remedy that suits the exact particulars of your headache but also suits you in general as a person. A homeopathic consultation includes all the regular medical questions you would expect but also many more about the foods you eat, what time of day you feel better or worse, what side of the body you sleep on and many more. When a homeopathic remedy matches you as a whole, homeopathic doctors believe that it can act as an holistic stimulus to stimulate your body to do a better job of healing itself.

Lifestyle Factors

Some headaches can be due to environmental factors and this possibility will be explored. Others can simply be due to a severe food intolerance and this possibility will also be excluded and treated if necessary.

Orthodox medication / Painkillers

Chronic headaches of unknown cause are treated in orthodox medicine mainly palliatively – that means by the use of pain reducing medication. I am not against this in any way and painkillers can be used while we seek to stimulate a healing response in the body with the methods described above. Then when the headaches are much improved or gone, we can patiently wean you off the painkillers.


 Dr Brian Kaplan on Headaches & Migraines

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Dr Kaplan: Provocative Therapy

In December 2012, as result of a stress at work, I suffered from severe anxiety, fear, panic attacks, tachycardia and insomnia.These symptoms became increasingly severe and were associated with low self-esteem and loss of self-confidence. I consulted my GP who prescribed Citalopram and beta blockers for the tachycardia. The antidepressant did not suit me and I felt worse. I was then referred to Dr Brian Kaplan, to be treated with the ‘Provocative Therapy’. This treatment adapted by Dr Kaplan, is based on the principle that the therapist ask questions covering all aspects of the patient’s life, by exaggerating the meanings of it. During the 1 hour session, the patient experiences a strong reaction, triggered by the ‘Provocative’ input of the therapist. Initially, there is an increased fear with regression to the childhood, associated to strong emotions and sorrow, which may precipitate sobbing. Subsequently, this state is followed by a phase of self-analysis which is more constructive. The ‘provocation’ breaks the pattern of the patient’s own feelings of hopelessness and discomfort. In fact, there is an opening of the self-image and a critical strong desire for change, in response to the provocation, which can be at times, outrageous. I underwent 9 weekly sessions during which I progressively became free from fear. The anxiety and panic attacks reduced significantly and I started to know what I want from my life and became more positive and optimistic. At the end of the 9 weeks, I acquired my self-confidence and self – esteem together with a new approach in my life which initially appeared to me broken and rather useless. The 9 sessions – in my opinion – were sufficient to resolve the initial acute state with anxiety and I felt a person full of interest and happier.  It is more than one year since I started the ‘provocative therapy’ with Dr Kaplan and I have not had any relapse to the original symptoms and discomfort. I strongly recommend this this therapy as a novelty; this is medication- free and can produce resolution of the acute psychological/mental conditions, quicker than the conventional therapies. In order to be successful, it is crucial that the patient collaborates and has complete trust in the therapist. The scientific process of such a treatment is not yet known and /or clarified. However, a number of recent studies in Neurophysiology and Psychiatry have shown the importance of hexogen and endogen stimuli, which can triggers and induce changes in the brain in response to the external inputs, acting via the hypothalamic/endocrine axes. It can be suggested that some of these mechanisms may be involved in the therapeutic process of the Provocative Therapy, but a lot of work needs to be in hand.