Posted 8/9/2011 8:52 PM (GMT -6)
Help with identifying headache type
Hi, I'm new here, and need some help with chronic daily headache episodes (about 3-5 a day).
I started having strange feelings late last year and early this year (panic and hyperventilation attacks, feelings of "doom" coming from out of nowhere). I just attributed that to deadline stress and overwork. Sometimes my speech would slur a bit and I would even stutter (again, I thought it was either too much coffee or stress, or both).
Early this year I accidentally banged the top of my head quite hard on the corner of a cupboard door. I wrote it off a bit too fast, because even though the pain was sharp and intense, it went away within ten minutes. That evening I had an uncharacteristic explosion of temper, which now I think was a sign of a concussion. I have accepted now, along with my doctor, that I have post concussion syndrome.
Anyhow, a few days after the sharp knock, it was (as usual) a fretful time at work. I had quite bad eyestrain. Out of nowhere, I felt massive pain on one side of my head and what felt like a rush of blood in my head, nausea and the worst symptoms of a "panic attack" I have ever experienced. The pain was very intense and I had to take the rest of the day off, along with the next.
My doctor who referred me to a neurologist and I passed the neurology exam with flying colours. There was no evidence of brain trauma or intracranial pressure.
Since that knock on the head (about 6 months ago), I've had chronic daily headaches, with episodes in the morning, afternoon and evening and sometimes before going to bed. There's a good chunk of the day when I don't have a headache, which always gives me false hope. Sure enough like clockwork, I get the same droning headache.
The headache feels like someone pressing their thumb down very hard on the top left side of my head (but not pain behind my eye). Sometimes it feels like something is about to "pop" and it feel bad, but then that feeling subsides. It alarms me though. I also get eye and finger twitching, sometimes hyperventilation, swimming vertigo and sharp pains around my neck. These symptoms felt worse 2 months ago, but the headaches are always consistent. Between each throbbing ache I get some strange feeling like a build-up of pressure, but there is no pain with that - it's an invisible feeling but again makes me feel "doomy." It's all really unsettling. I know I have post concussion syndrome, but I would love to know what variant of headache this might be, so I can aim for more appropriate treatment. For example, maybe the bang on the head ignited chronic tension or cluster headaches.
Does anyone have any thoughts? I would greatly appreciate any helpful advice from anyone.
The headaches get in the way of my life: I have a toddler daughter who I feel sometimes loses out because the headaches etc often take so much out of me.