Migraine and headache medicine: Graduates from Kiel University celebrate their academic master's degree

Handover of certificates and farewell to the 2023 graduates
Friday, November 10, 2023 at 5:00 p.m., lecture hall of the old children's clinic

Welcome and opening
Prof. Dr.med. Dipl.-Psych. Hartmut Göbel | Specialist course director

Greetings from
Prof. Dr.
med. Joachim Thiery, Dean of the Medical Faculty, CAU Kiel, Head of Research and Teaching, UKSH Prof. Dr. Birgit Friedl, Director of the Center for Scientific Continuing Education CAU Kiel

Lecture by
Prof. Jes Olesen, Dr.med. (Copenhagen, Denmark), Dr. hon.c. (Rome, Italy), Dr. hon.c. (Yekaterinburg, Russia), Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians (FRCP). Professor of Neurology, University of Copenhagen 1985 -. Chair, Lundbeck Foundation Center for Neurovascular Signaling 2006-2013. Visiting professor Harvard, 1999 and UCLA 2009. Chair Center for Experimental Headache Research 2016-; Founder Danish Headache Center 2001-; President of Danish Headache Society, Scandinavian Migraine Society, International Headache Society, Danish Stroke Association, Year of the Brain 1997 campaign, European Federation of Neurological Societies (EFNS) and European Brain Council (EBC)

Speech by the graduates
med. Ursula Müller, specialist in neurology, Bundeswehr Hospital Ulm Dr. med. Mirjana Slijepcevic, specialist in anesthesiology, Tutzing Pain Center

Handover of the documents

Memories of 4 semesters of part-time master's degree at the University of Kiel

Download text of the graduates' speech

First successful graduates at Kiel University

Master of Migraine and Headache Medicine (MMHM)

For the first time in Germany, the part-time academic master's degree program Master of Migraine and Headache Medicine (MMHM) started in the winter semester of 2021/22 at the University of Kiel. Students from all over Germany and from abroad enrolled. Nationally and internationally renowned teachers present an interdisciplinary academic body of knowledge on the topic. At the academic graduation ceremony on November 10th, 2023, 15 successful students were welcomed by the head of the program, Prof. Dr. Hartmut Göbel received her academic master's degree.

The part-time master's degree program was developed by the Kiel Medical Faculty in collaboration with the Kiel Pain Clinic. This is the first course in this field in Germany. It therefore also has a pilot function with an impact on the profile of the faculty. The course is organized part-time over four semesters and teaches the latest developments in migraine and headache therapy. The core is an interdisciplinary concept with theory and practice-oriented modules. The university course ends with the academic degree Master of Migraine and Headache Medicine (MMHM).

In his welcoming speech, the Dean of the Medical Faculty, Prof. Dr. med. Joachim Thiery commented on the successful organization of the course: “The course was a forward-looking decision; the Science Council is calling for a transfer of university medicine into clinical application. The country is planning a transfer strategy. The master's degree program is therefore a pioneer. It recognizes the foresight of the initiators.” Prof. Dr. Birgit Friedl from the board of the Center for Scientific Continuing Education at Kiel University explained the three pillars on which the master's degree program is based. The medical faculty has accredited the course and awards the master's degree. The second pillar is formed by the Kiel Pain Clinic under the direction of Prof. Hartmut Göbel. This is where the technical organization of the course of study and clinical further training take place. The third pillar is the Center for Scientific Continuing Education. The Higher Education Act obliges the university to offer continuing education courses. The center takes over the administration and implementation.

In the academic speech, Prof. Jes Olesen from the University of Copenhagen pointed out the disruptive findings in migraine and headache medicine in recent years. He emphasized the close German-Danish scientific cooperation between the University of Copenhagen, the Danish Headache Center, the University of Kiel and the Kiel Pain Clinic. Science and healthcare require masters in the field. In this way, scientific progress can be expanded and incorporated into care. Migraines and headaches are the most important widespread diseases after tooth decay. In recent years there has been an explosive increase in knowledge about diagnosis, development and treatment. However, less than 20% of those affected would receive prevention or acute therapy in accordance with guidelines. The need for modern care is very high. Current basic research and clinical studies are the basis for contemporary treatment. The individual suffering and the great social significance require a focus. This increases the need for qualified interdisciplinary migraine and headache experts.

The course is organized part-time, so all participants have their own practical experience with the treatment of headaches and migraines. The focus is on comprehensive theoretical training by internationally renowned and qualified lecturers and at the same time a concise practical orientation. A central element is a variety of practical events in the outpatient and clinical areas. The basics and therapy are taught in three semesters. It is a university course of study with a high technical level. Central areas are organization and structures of treatment. Topics such as DRGs, multimodal treatment, outpatient and inpatient care, among others, are taken into account in detail. The face-to-face phases take place on 15 weekends in the first three semesters on campus and at the Kiel Pain Clinic. Clinical internships at the Kiel Pain Clinic are completed in three weeks of attendance. The subject-related master's thesis is processed in the 4th semester.

The part-time course is primarily aimed at graduates of medicine/dentistry and psychology with professional experience in the treatment of headaches and migraines. Further information can be found on the course homepage: https://www.zww-kiel.de/migraine-headache-medicine

Voices from the expert world

“The academic course “Master of Migraine and Headache Medicine” at the University of Kiel is an excellent initiative. There is a large unmet need for education and training in the area of ​​headache disorders worldwide. An academic program as detailed and carefully planned as that in Kiel is greatly welcomed in the headache and pain community. The master's degree program is perfectly located at the Kiel Pain Clinic and at the University of Kiel with balanced theoretical and clinical courses and aims to equip graduates with solid scientific and clinical knowledge, skills and competencies in the field of headaches. In addition, this stimulating and comprehensive program will also help meet the significant need for skilled and dedicated headache specialists and increase awareness of headache disorders.”

Professor Rigmor Højland Jensen MD, Dr.Med Sci. Director, Danish Headache Center, Department of Neurology, Principal Investigator Master of Headache Disorders, University of Copenhagen, Denmark

“As a representative of German pain medicine, which strives to provide good care for patients with chronic pain that keeps pace with current scientific developments, I extremely welcome the fact that the University of Kiel is committed to improving the quality of care for patients Migraines and headaches tried. The new course of study will develop into a milestone that will also have a lasting impact on health policy. Ultimately, the patients and the modern care benefit from this, as they come across trained doctors with a high level of expertise to treat their headache disorders.”

Dr. med. Johannes Horlemann, President of the German Society for Pain Medicine eV

“The academic course “Master of Migraine and Headache Medicine”, which was developed at the University of Kiel, is excellent and covers everything that students should learn about headaches. It is very well thought out and comprehensive. This course was urgently needed to enable further training for therapists interested in specialized headache medicine. I congratulate the developers on their great work.”

Prof. Alan M. Rapoport, MD; Past President International Headache Society (IHS), David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA in Los Angeles, California

“Migraines and headaches are the most common neurological diseases. Many patients with headaches and facial pain are urgently looking for competent and up-to-date care. The course helps to close an important gap in the academic training of experts. It will certainly have a very positive impact on treatment in Germany in the coming years with further qualified treatment offers and research initiatives for those affected.”

PD Dr. med. Charly Gaul, Secretary General of the German Migraine and Headache Society (DMKG)

“Headache disorders are so common and disabling that their impact on people and society cannot be overstated. The Master of Migraine and Headache Medicine degree program is a unique opportunity to gain the knowledge and experience to help many thousands of patients in need. The commitment of the Kiel Pain Clinic and the University of Kiel to headache patients is known worldwide. When I looked at the structure of this master's program, I was not surprised at how comprehensive and well thought out it is. An unusual feature is the focus of the third semester on organizing headache care, a topic with which the Kiel Migraine and Headache Center and the University of Kiel have great experience. I have no doubt that this excellent program will have a positive impact on the health of German citizens. I highly recommend this program and hope it is replicated in other countries.

Dr. Elizabeth Leroux MD, FRCPC, Professor of Neurology, Head of the Headache Center, South Health Campus, University of Calgary, Canada