(CBS NEWS) -- Having sex may be the solution to curing a splitting headache.
from the University of Munster in Germany have found that sexual
activity was successful in treating migraines in 60 percent sufferers
and in one-third of patients with cluster headaches.
suggest...that sexual activity can lead to partial or complete relief of
headache in some migraine and a few cluster headache patients," wrote
the authors of the study, published Feb. 19 in Cephalagia.
results show that sexual activity during a migraine attack might
relieve or even stop an attack in some cases, and that sexual activity
in the presence of headache is not an unusual behavior," they added.
are a kind of throbbing headache that may cause nausea, vomiting or
sensitivity to light. Some people get a warning symptom like vision
disturbances called an aura before the headache hits. Migraines occur
more often in women than men and may run in families. Some women say
they have less migraines when they are pregnant.
headaches differ from migraines, and are characterized by chronic,
one-sided headaches that can include eye tearing, steady burning and
sharp sensations, and stuffy noses. They can occur regularly during one
week to one year, and may be spaced out by attack-free periods. A
cluster headache can begin as a severe, sudden headache often around the
same time of the day you had the last one. They happen more often in
men than women and may run in families.
The researchers looked
at 800 patients with migraines and 200 patients with cluster headaches.
Patients were asked to complete a questionnaire about their sexual
activity during their headache episodes and write how sex affected the
About one-third of the patients said they had sex during a
migraine or a cluster headache. Sixty percent of migraine sufferers who
had sex said they had some sort of pain relief, with most of them
reporting moderate or complete alleviation of their symptoms. Some
participants -- mostly men -- admitted to using sex as a way to treat
the migraines. For one-third of the migraine patients who had sex, the
pain got worse.
Thirty-seven percent of cluster headache patients
said sex helped lessen the pain, with 90 percent of those patients who
had sex saying they experienced moderate to complete relief of
headaches. However, 50 percent of them said sex only made headaches
Study researcher Stefan Evers, a neurologist and headache specialist at the University of Munster in Germany, told LiveScience
that sex releases endorphins, which are natural painkillers. Other
studies have shown that sex can alleviate migraines, but the studies
were done on a smaller scale. Evers suggested that masturbation or any
sexual activity may be able to get rid of headaches in some people.
"Having an orgasm in any way shape or form will help (them)," he said.