A vascular headache is a type of headache that is thought to involve abnormal functioning of the blood vessels in the head. These headaches are often categorize into different types, and one common example is a migraine headache. Migraines are considere a type of vascular headache because they were historically believe to be cause by changes in blood flow in the brain.

In the context of migraines, the vascular theory has evolved, and it is now understood that the changes in blood flow are not the primary cause but rather a part of the complex migraine process. Migraines are now recognize as a neurological disorder involving various factors, including genetics, neurotransmitter imbalances, and changes in the brainstem and trigeminal nerve. Visit our Clinic or Book Appointment For More Information!

Vascular headache head is vibrate and paining

Types of Vascular Headache

  1. Migraine Headaches:

    • Migraines were once thought to be primarily cause by changes in blood flow. However, the current understanding is that migraines involve complex neurological processes, including cortical spreading depression, neurotransmitter imbalances, and activation of the trigeminal nerve. While blood vessel changes can occur during a migraine, they are not considere the primary cause.
  2. Cluster Headaches:

    • Cluster headaches are intense headaches that occur in clusters or groups, often at the same time each day for weeks or months. They are associate with severe pain on one side of the head and are sometimes link to dilation and constriction of blood vessels. The exact cause of cluster headaches is not fully understood.
  3. Temporal Arteritis (Giant Cell Arteritis):

    • Temporal arteritis is a condition characterize by inflammation of the temporal arteries, which are blood vessels locate on the scalp. This inflammation can cause headaches, scalp tenderness, and vision problems. It is more common in older individuals.

Symptoms of Vascular Headache

  1. Migraine Symptoms:

    • Throbbing Pain: Migraine headaches are often characterize by a pulsating or throbbing pain, typically on one side of the head.
    • Aura: Some individuals may experience visual or sensory disturbances known as aura before or during the headache. This can include flashing lights, zigzag lines, or temporary vision loss.
    • Nausea and Vomiting: Many people with migraines experience nausea and may vomit during an episode.
    • Sensitivity to Light and Sound: Bright lights and loud sounds can exacerbate migraine symptoms.
    • Aura Symptoms: Besides visual disturbances, aura can involve sensory changes, such as tingling or numbness, and difficulties with speech or language.
  2. Cluster Headache Symptoms:

    • Severe Pain: Cluster headaches are characterize by intense, sharp pain, usually on one side of the head.
    • Short Duration: These headaches are typically shorter in duration compare to migraines but can be extremely severe.
    • Cluster Periods: Cluster headaches often occur in clusters or cycles, with frequent attacks during a specific period, follow by periods of remission.
    • Restlessness: Individuals with cluster headaches may exhibit restlessness or agitation during an attack.

Treatment of Vascular Headache

  1. Lifestyle Modifications:

    • Identify and Avoid Triggers: Keep a headache diary to track potential triggers, such as specific foods, beverages, stress, lack of sleep, or environmental factors. Avoiding triggers can help reduce the frequency of headaches.
    • Maintain Regular Sleep Patterns: Establish a consistent sleep schedule, ensuring an adequate and quality sleep duration.
    • Stay Hydrate: Dehydration can be a trigger for some individuals, so maintaining proper hydration is essential.
  2. Acute Medications (for Symptom Relief):

    • Over-the-Counter Pain Relievers: Non-prescription medications like ibuprofen, naproxen, or acetaminophen can be use for mild to moderate headaches.
    • Prescription Medications: Triptans (such as sumatriptan) are specific medications designe to target migraines and cluster headaches by constricting blood vessels and blocking pain pathways.
  3. Preventive Medications:

    • Beta-Blockers: Medications like propranolol or metoprolol can be use to prevent migraines by reducing the frequency and severity of episodes.
    • Anticonvulsants: Certain anticonvulsant medications, such as topiramate or valproic acid, may be prescribe for migraine prevention.
    • Calcium Channel Blockers: Medications like verapamil are sometimes use for preventing cluster headaches.
  4. CGRP (Calcitonin Gene-Relate Peptide) Monoclonal Antibodies:

    • A newer class of medications designed to target the CGRP pathway, which plays a role in migraine attacks. These antibodies, such as erenumab and fremanezumab, are used for preventive treatment.
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