Could You Have a Cervicogenic Headache?

By Annette GallagherMarch 31, 2017No Comments

Do you suspect you’re suffering from cervicogenic headache? This is a relatively rare headache disorder, so it can take a long time to realize you have it. It is a secondary headache – that is, the headache pain is caused by an underlying medical factor.

Let’s review and discover more about it.


What Causes Cervicogenic Headache?

Cervicogenic headaches are unusual because they don‘t actually originate with the head. In fact, they begin with a problem somewhere in the neck. This gives rise to the other common term for them: cervical headache, referring to the cervical spine.

With this headache, the pain you feel is actually referred pain. The pain comes from somewhere else in the body, but is perceived to originate in the skull. To get to the root of the headache, the actual cause somewhere in the neck must be isolated.


Cervicogenic Headache Symptoms

A cervical headache is felt as pain in the head that can come and go, but recurs frequently. It can be a throbbing, pounding, or sharp pain. The headaches do not necessarily have the same sensation every time they happen. Because they change in duration and intensity, sufferers might believe they are getting headaches from different sources over time.

In most cases, nothing about the headache pain suggests it really arises from the neck. However, many sufferers have pain in the neck. The pain can come from any of the neck’s bones, nerves or soft tissue. This pain can co-occur with headache, or it can appear on its own any time before or after headache. Neck stiffness, soreness and tension can also emerge.


Cervicogenic Headache Treatment

The specific treatment required for cervical headache depends on the neck issue instead of the headache symptoms.

In other cases, there are posture, health or lifestyle issues that have contributed to malfunction of the neck over time. To resolve these problems, soft tissue manipulation is usually effective. This can take the form of massage, therapy, and more.


Miami Headache Institute

Whatever the case, accurate diagnosis is the key to lasting relief. At Miami Headache Institute, we use the latest diagnostic tools to uncover the real problem and develop a customized course of treatment for each patient. To learn more or make an appointment, contact us.