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Question
Posted by: TR | 2003/02/27

Localized headaches

For the past three/four weeks I have been experiencing piercing headaches that only lasts about 30 seconds and then completely disappears. They are normally extremely intense - literally as if someone is sticking a needle into my head, and then pulling it out - and occur on the right side of my head. The first one was the worst, completely disorientated me for its duration, but they since deteriorated in intensity. I've always had normal blood pressure, and am quite fit and healthy - and very seldom go to the doctor. I am hoping that they will go away with time, since they are deteriorating both in frequency and in intensity - will they?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberDoc

TR, it sounds like it might be a cluster headache. The following is from an article I wrote a while ago and summarises the most important features of a cluster headache.
Cluster headache
ÿ Headache lasts 15 minutes - 2 hours up to 4 - 8 times a day
ÿ Male more than female
ÿ Attacks come in clusters of 4 - 12 weeks with problem-free months in between
ÿ Located on one side and frequently involves the eye or the area around the eye
ÿ Severe to excruciating intensity
ÿ Penetrating and stabbing pain
ÿ Nausea and / or vomiting
ÿ Sensitivity to light and / or sound
ÿ Bloodshot eye and / or increased tears
ÿ Swelling and / or drooping of eyelid
ÿ Blocked or runny nose
If this sounds like your headache, the best would be to go to your doctor, ask him if he agrees and of course get the appropriate treatment. Good luck.
PS If you’re interested in the rest of the article, you can mail me at CyberDoc@mweb.co.za and I’ll send you a copy.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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