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20 Nov 2005

constant headache
Hi. I have had a headache everyday for the last three weeks. It started one day when i realised that if I frowned then i would get a pain just above my left eye. This went away after a few hours. The next day I had a headache around my left eye and left temple. It was only during the day and afternoon. Although I hav had one or two days that are headache free, the rest of the days I have had a headache for at least three hours during the day. I have been to the doctors and the opticians and they don't seem too worried. I am just a big worrier and am scared it may be a brain tumor. I don't normally suffer from headaches. More recently the headache ahs been around both eyes and also hurts sometimes only if I shake my head.

Do you have any ideas?

I have only had a moderate amount of stress recently - nothing out of the ordinary. I am in my final year of university, female, 22 years old.

Thank you so much for your time.
Answer 408 views
Headache expert
Headache expert

01 Jan 0001

Dear Syudbx,

It is quite normal to be worried when you start having painful headaches out of the blue. For this reason, anyone suffering from a changed or new headache must have a proper medical assessment, which should include a neurological examination. The reason for this is to make absolutely certain that there is not some serious or life threatening underlying medical condition causing the headaches. Although this is uncommon, it is essential to exclude this possibility before doing anything else.

Once this has been done, then the next part of the investigation is started. The correct way to deal with the problem is to have a proper diagnosis of the underlying causes of the headache. If these are treated, the headaches no longer occur, and it is no longer necessary to rely on potentially harmful “rescue” medication.

To get to the root of the problem, you need what is called a “multidisciplinary” assessment. There are many different structures in the head and neck, all of which can be involved in the headache process, and no single specialist can have all the knowledge necessary to make a comprehensive assessment and diagnosis. For this reason, the combined the expertise of different specialists who would normally treat headache patients in isolation, are co-ordinated into a single more comprehensive body of knowledge. This enables a more comprehensive treatment plan, in which all the contributing factors are addressed.

This information has been supplied and checked by the multidisciplinary team of specialists at The Headache Clinic, in association with The International Headache Society and the South African Institute of Headache and Migraine Science. For consultation with these specialists, call The Headache Clinic on 0861 678 911 (Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban).
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 examination, 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.