As a pediatric neurologist and headache medicine specialist, I combine my clinical interests with my research interests. My clinical interests lie in improving the outcomes for children, adolescents and young adults with headaches, most of which are migraine. My research seeks to understand the clinical and biological characteristics of headaches in order to improve the outcomes of not only the patients and families we see, but of patients everywhere.
My PhD focused on the molecular biology of the Substance P receptor, a neuromodulator of pain pathways. My residency training was in neurology with a special emphasis on child neurology. Combining these two interests naturally led to the study of migraine in children, adolescents and young adults. My career was guided by several mentors along the way, with two of the foremost being Dr. James Krause, my PhD mentor, and Dr. Arthur Prensky, a founder of child neurology who had an interest in headaches.
At Cincinnati Children’s Headache Center, we use a multidisciplinary team approach that incorporates neurology, psychology and nursing to improve the outcomes of these children, adolescents and young adults. A foundation of this approach is a consistent goal of educating the patients on how to manage their disease. Our responsibility is to answer all their questions through a combination of research and education.
We are the only pediatric center in the United States to be recognized as an Advanstar Clinical Center of Excellence in Headache Medicine by Medical Economics. I have received the Seymour Solomon Award from the American Headache Society. I am on multiple national and international committees that have established the treatment and research guidelines for headache medicine.
Cincinnati Children's Headache Center was one of the five founding institutions for the United Council for Neurologic Subspecialties (UCNS)-certified headache medicine training and the only one of the five dedicated to children and adolescents. Our program has been funded consistently by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) since 2003, with our largest grant being $18 million for the Childhood and Adolescent Migraine prevention (CHAMP) study, as reported in New England Journal of Medicine.
Cincinnati Children's Headache Center is an international leader in the treatment, education and research of headaches in children, adolescents and young adults. Our goal is not only to provide the best possible care to our patients but also to help children around the world through our research and education.
Migraine is a genetic condition, but multiple genes contribute to the disease. This results in variable symptoms and risk factors. In our research, we are seeking better disease characterization and learning from our patients, which will help us tease apart these factors. We hope to ultimately improve the lives of our patients and families.
When I’m not helping patients or engaged in research, I like to be out in nature with my family. We enjoy walking, kayaking, hiking and golfing.
Headaches; migraines; neurogenetics; neurometabolic disorders
Epidemiology; diagnostic criteria; treatment evaluation; outcome responses; quality of life issues; pharmaceutical trials; and neurogenetics of childhood headaches
Professor, UC Department of Pediatrics
Neurology, Headache Medicine