Central serotonergic neurotransmission was assessed using intensity dependence of cortical auditory evoked potentials (IDAP) in cluster headache (CH) patients during both the active and interictal period. In 15 episodic CH patients and 13 controls previously described methods were used and amplitude-stimulus intensity function (ASF) slopes were computed. In the cluster group mean ASF slope was significantly steeper than in the control group both during the active period (1.53 ± 0.90 vs. 0.77 ± 0.85, P = 0031) and interictally (1.85 ± 1.20 vs. 0.77 ± 0.85, P = 0012). In the cluster group IDAPs of active and interictal period did not differ significantly (P = 0378). Duration of the disease or the present bout, distance from the last attack did not correlate with ASF slopes. In conclusion, our results are compatible with decreased level of serotonergic neurotransmission in raphe-cortical pathways. Diminished serotonergic activity in raphe-hypothalamic serotonergic pathways might be hypothesized influencing the activity of hypothalamic neurons and thus play a role in the genesis of cluster headache.
- Cluster headache
- Serotonergic neurotransmission
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology