Headache

April 2017


Definition


Headache is the generic term for any head pain whatsoever. Headaches are very common and are a major reason for medical consultation. They may be mundane and benign, or more rarely a direct result of more serious causes that require medical care.

Symptoms


Typically, the pain felt can manifest itself in the form of burning sensations, tingling, or the feeling of your "skull being crushed". Depending on the causes, which are potentially numerous, and form of the headache, other symptoms may be associated such as fever, nausea, hypertension, and blurred vision.

Diagnosis


Whether they are ultimately harmless or of greater concern, the presence of occasional or chronic headaches should merit a medical consultation. To make an accurate diagnosis of the causes and implications of a headache, the doctor will ask the patient a series of questions, seeking to characterize the mode of onset, the intermittent or continuous aspect, the improving or aggravating factors, the type of pain, the intensity of associated signs ... the clinical examination that follows may be supplemented as necessary with blood tests, dental or eye exams, an X-ray of the sinuses, a lumbar puncture or even brain imaging. Diagnosis is mainly clinical and the use of additional tests is only done in rare cases, particularly in the case of a chronic headaches.

Treatment


An HCP must first take into consideration all the questions answered by the patient during the medical examination to determine the causes and therefore the solutions. Many drugs can serve as effective solutions to eliminate the headache, such as analgesics (paracetamol), which are most frequently used. If they do not prove sufficient to alleviate the crisis, other drugs such as anti-inflammatory drugs without cortisone (including aspirin) may be prescribed. In case of migraines, the most frequent type of chronic headache, a doctor will prescribe rest in darkness and silence, good sleep and a healthy lifestyle to relieve the pain. Stronger treatments are sometimes prescribed if attacks are too frequent or disabling.

Related

Published by Jeff. Latest update on June 14, 2013 at 05:50 PM by Jeff.
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