Site Specificity of Pain and Tension in Tension‐Type Headaches

Alan L. Peterson, G. Wayne Talcott, William J. Kelleher, C. Keith Haddock

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Previous studies have not found a significant correlation between location of pain and electromyogram levels in chronic headache patients. However, these studies only examined a limited number of muscle groups and did not assess subjective tension levels. The present study evaluated a group of tension‐type (n = 43) and migraine and tension‐type (n = 30) headache patients. Measures were obtained at five muscle sites (frontalis, temporalis, masseter, splenius capitis, and trapezius) for patient ratings of headache pain, patient ratings of muscle tension, and electromyogram recordings cross‐sectionally. Neither subjective pain nor tension ratings were found to be significantly related to electromyogram levels. The site‐specificity relationship between chronic headache pain, subjective report of muscular tension, and electromyogram levels remains unclear.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)89-92
Number of pages4
JournalHeadache: The Journal of Head and Face Pain
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1995
Externally publishedYes


  • electromyogram
  • headache
  • pain
  • site specificit
  • tension

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Neurology


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