Dr Lucio D’Anna is a Consultant Neurologist at the Department of Stroke & Neurosciences at Imperial College London NHS Trust. He is also Honorary Senior Lecturer at the Division of Brain Sciences, Imperial College London.
The pain can be triggered by everyday activities such as eating, shaving, talking or by being out in even a light breeze. Paroxysmal hemicrania has similar characteristics of pain and associated symptoms as the cluster headache. However, each attack is usually short-lived, with most lasting between 5 and 30 minutes.
The pain is always one-sided, very severe, and seems to be concentrated around the eye, temple, and forehead region. There are associated symptoms of watering of the eye and eye redness; even drooping of the eyelid.
Hemicrania continua is characterised by a continuous, fluctuating, unilateral pain. The pain is, typically, mild to moderate in intensity and in the majority of patients episodes of severe pain are superimposed on the continuous baseline pain. SUNCT is a rare type of headache characterized by short-lived (5–240 seconds), painful attacks around the eye, accompanied by eye redness and watering of the eye.
Hemiplegic migraine is a rare type of migraine, which is associated with weakness on one side of the body as part of the migraine attack. This can involve the face, arm or leg and be accompanied by numbness, or pins and needles. It is also associated with speech difficulties, vision problems or confusion. This weakness may last from one hour to several days, but usually, it goes within 24 hours. The migraine typically follows the weakness, but it may precede the weakness or be absent.
At Dementech Neuroscience Clinic, we offer a comprehensive approach to headaches including multiaxial assessments of symptoms and investigation of other neuropsychiatric issues associated with headaches, blood and imaging assessments. We will use blood tests and imaging scans to precisely make the diagnosis and differentiate from other disorders.
There are several medications that can be used for the acute attacks. Some people may take a daily tablet to act as a headache preventer.