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History of the Michigan Headache and Neurology Clinic

Dr. Messina finished his Neurology residency as Chief Resident at the prestigious Barnes Hospital, at Washington University in St. Louis, MO in June, 1981. Two weeks later, Jayne Messina, RN and Dr. Messina started their medical practice in Muskegon in July 1981.

While in Muskegon, they started the state’s first Alzheimer Screening program and the first sleep clinic (outside of Henry Ford). Jayne started an epilepsy society for public education and gave talks to teacher and parent groups to recognize seizure disorders. Dr. Messina helped start the hospice program in Muskegon. In 1983, he wrote a computer program for their clinic which was one of the first electronic medical records. This program continues to evolve and is still in use.

They moved the practice to Ann Arbor in 1985, and then to mid-state Michigan in 1988, where it remains to this day. Dr. Messina joined the medical staff at Sparrow Hospital in 1988, and has remained an independent practitioner all of these years.

Our clinic has produced a documentary about headaches, called Life and Migraine, which ran for two years on PBS, and a feature film called Lily's Mom, which deals with spouse abuse and migraine. We were featured on an episode of Mystery Diagnosis on Discovery Health.

Over the years, Dr. Messina has authored numerous educational programs and scientific articles, as well as a chapter in a headache textbook. He also published a book, The Spattered White Coat, to inspire young physicians.

The philosophy of the practice is to remain free of any influence by corporate medicine or the pharmaceutical industry. We have no allegiance to any medical center, and we make patient referrals for testing, or other specialists, strictly based on quality.

Our clinic consists of Dr. Messina and Jayne, plus Nurse Practitioners, Katelyn D’Onofrio and Amanda Draper. Liza Gamel, RN works with Jayne, along with Christina Buckmaster as office manager, and Jill Sewell and Alexis Visser as Medical Assistants. The front office is staffed by Julie Doyen and Amy Stiles. Tim Thelen has been our long-term programmer and IT person, who was instrumental in developing the clinic’s software and educational programs with Dr. Messina. Dr. Messina has taught medical students and residents throughout his career as well as organizing numerous annual medical education programs for the Michigan State Medical Society.

We are proud to celebrate this 40th anniversary of our state-wide clinic and plan to continue our service for years to come.