Headache Center

The first center of its kind on the West Coast, the UCSF Headache Center provides comprehensive care to relieve the most debilitating headaches. We offer outpatient clinical care as well as inpatient hospital treatment for those who need it. In addition, the center conducts research, exploring the mechanisms of headaches and how existing and new treatments might provide relief.

Our specialists work closely with you and your primary care doctor to develop an effective long-term treatment plan. When appropriate, we work with experts in neurosurgery, otolaryngology (ear, nose and throat) and ophthalmology (eyes and vision). We also work with specialists at the Osher Center for Integrative Medicine, which combines conventional and alternative medicine, such as acupuncture, herbs, massage and meditation, for treating headaches.

We treat patients and families with the utmost respect and compassion, with sensitivity to the diverse places and cultures from which our patients come.

Pediatric patients are seen at the UCSF Pediatric Headache Center.

Patients with pain in the temporomandibular joints (TMJs) are treated at the UCSF Center for Orofacial Pain and Dental Sleep Medicine. For more information and appointments, call (415) 476-8298.

Patients with sinus pain are treated at the UCSF Sinus Center. For more information and appointments, call (415) 353-2757.

We are part of the UCSF Weill Institute for Neurosciences.

Telemedicine Consultations

The UCSF Headache Center is able to provide consultations for patients in our region, as well as nationally and internationally. We only require a referral and recent medical records from the primary medical or neurological team and insurance information. Patients will be seen virtually by Dr. Levin or one of his associates. A complete consultation note will be sent with detailed recommendations for diagnostic testing (if warranted) and specific management suggestions including medications, pain procedures and neuromodulation techniques. Call (415) 353-8393 to make a telemedicine appointment.

Our locations

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    Decorative Caduceus

    Sphenopalatine Ganglion Blocks RCT

    Reduction in headache days from baseline to month 8 of treatment


    Awards & recognition

    • usnews-neurology

      Best hospital in Northern California

    • usnews-neurology

      Best in the West in neurology & neurosurgery

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    Preparing for Your Appointment

    What to Expect

    • At your first visit, you'll meet with a neurologist who specializes in headache medicine. This doctor will obtain a detailed history, perform a head and neck as well as a neurological examination, assess the cause of your headaches, and offer treatment options.
    • Because UCSF is a major, internationally known medical training center, you may see physicians in specialty training (residents and fellows) who are under the supervision of one of our faculty.
    • At follow-up visits, you'll be seen either by one of our neurologists or, occasionally, by a nurse practitioner. Your primary care provider will also participate in your ongoing care.

    International Services

    If you live in another country and are coming to UCSF for medical
    treatment, our patient liaisons can help coordinate all aspects of your visit.

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    English, as well as for patients who are deaf or have trouble hearing.

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