The efficacy of wet-cupping in the treatment of tension and migraine headache

Academic Article


  • Wet-cupping is an ancient medical technique still used in several contemporary societies, but little empirical study has been devoted to test its efficacy to treat tension and migraine headache. Using a pre-post research design, 70 patients with chronic tension or migraine headache were treated with wet-cupping. Three primary outcome measures were considered at the baseline and 3 months following treatment: headache severity, days of headache per month, and use of medication. Results suggest that, compared to the baseline, mean headache severity decreased by 66-25; following wet-cupping treatment. Treated patients also experienced the equivalent of 12.6 fewer days of headache per month. We conclude that wet-cupping leads to clinical relevant benefits for primary care patients with headache. Possible mechanisms of wet-cupping's efficacy, as well as directions for future research are discussed. © 2008 World Scientific Publishing Company & Institute for Advanced Research in Asian Science and Medicine.
  • Authors

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Ahmadi A; Schwebel DC; Rezaei M
  • Start Page

  • 37
  • End Page

  • 44
  • Volume

  • 36
  • Issue

  • 1