Is your headache dangerous

Secondary Headache| Is your Headache Dangerous?

A secondary headache is an underlying medical condition that stimulates pain-sensitive areas in the head or neck. Primary headaches, such as migraines and tension headaches, are not the same as this particular kind of headache.


The causes might vary from something as basic as excessive pain medication to anything as complex as a tumor in the patient’s body. And although secondary headaches only account for 2% of all, it is essential to detect one since they may be severe and sometimes even life-threatening.


A wide variety of medical conditions and lifestyle factors may bring on secondary headaches. Sometimes they indicate a more significant problem with one’s health. Many different secondary factors might contribute to moderate to severe headaches.


Secondary headaches may have a variety of less severe causes, including:


  • Dehydration

  • Hangover

  • Insomnia

  • Having a sinus infection

  • Brain freeze 


A secondary headache may, in certain instances, be a warning indication of a far more severe health problem, such as the following:


  • Addiction to pain relievers

  • Aneurysm

  • Bacterial or viral meningitis 

  • Brain tumor

  • Hypertension

  • Sinusitis

  • Injury to the neck or head

  • Infections of the brain, including encephalitis

  • Hydrocephalus

  • Issues with the blood vessels

  • Stroke


Secondary headaches are also a possibility when mental health problems are present, such as the following:


  • Depression

  • Experiencing anxiety

Headaches may also be brought on by taking too many pills or having a brain tumor. Many folks are clueless about secondary headaches and when they should seek medical attention.


Read More: How to identify brain tumor headaches? 


Secondary headache symptoms may mirror those of the initial headache. However, it’s essential to check for any other signs that might indicate a more serious underlying health issue is to blame for your persistent headaches.


The presence of specific symptoms, including the following, may indicate a secondary headache:


  • Intense, sudden, and unexpected head pain.

  • Experiencing the worst headache ever.

  • Migraines and headaches in those under 5 or over 50.

  • Headaches with an unusual physical examination.

  • Intense pain in the head after a seizure or passing out.

  • Pain in the head after intensive activity.

  • Headaches that vary from previous recurring headaches.


If you are throwing up in addition to having a headache, or if you have an intense headache first thing in the morning, you should be concerned and get assistance. It would help if you promptly addressed secondary headache symptoms, including discomfort, facial deviation, and a lowered state of consciousness.


Consult your healthcare professional if you are getting headaches of unexplained origin or ones that sprang out of nowhere without prior notice. They may suggest a complete physical examination or other diagnostic procedure to ascertain whether there is a hidden medical issue.

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The diagnosis of the underlying disease that’s producing your secondary headache is the first step in formulating a treatment plan.


In the case of a secondary headache brought on by a sinus infection, for instance, the patient may be prescribed antibiotics to treat the underlying illness and an OTC pain reliever to alleviate the associated symptoms.


Medication for hypertension, dietary adjustments, increased physical activity, weight reduction, and alcohol abstinence may not be enough to treat a secondary headache brought on by hypertension. A secondary headache might be a sign of a more serious medical condition, so it’s important to discuss with your doctor about various treatment options.


When another underlying medical condition causes discomfort in the head or neck, this kind of headache is referred to as a secondary headache. A wide range of medical conditions may cause secondary headaches. In comparison to primary headaches, secondary headaches are far less prevalent.


However, it is vital to notice them since, in certain instances, they may be significant and even pose a threat to the sufferer’s life.

About Author

Dr. Eshan Nerkar

Neurologist And Neurosuegeon

Dr. Eshan Nerkar, Consultant Brain & Spine Surgeon in Nashik specializes in Spine Surgery. He practices at AXON Brain & Spine Clinic. He is one of the best neurosurgeons in Nashik with more than 10 years of experience. He has performed more than 1000 surgeries related to brain and spinal surgery procedures.

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