This is a chronic persistent headache that varies in severity, and always occurs on the same side of the face and head. A very small percentage of patients will have pain on both sides of the head and face. Hemicrania Continua is more common in women than in men. The cause of this disorder is unknown.
This diagnosis is given if a patient has the following:
a one-sided daily or continuous headache of moderate intensity with occasional short, piercing head pain (3-5 times per day) for more than 3 months without shifting sides.
The headache responds to indomethacin.
The headache is accompanied by one of the following: eye redness and/or tearing, nasal congestion and/or runny nose, ptosis (drooping eyelid) and miosis (contracture of the iris). Occasionally, some patients may experience forehead sweating and migraine symptoms, such as throbbing pain, nausea and/or vomiting, or sensitivity to light and sound.
This disorder can be either chronic (daily headaches), or remitting, in which patients may have up to 6 months of daily pain, then experience pain free periods of weeks to months until the pain returns. Physical exertion and alcohol use may increase the severity of headache pain in some patients. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, please call us for a consultation today.