Tension Headache (cont.)
IN THIS ARTICLE
When to seek medical care for a tension headache
When to call the doctor
When to go to the hospital
Certain headaches may indicate a more serious underlying problem. In these cases, the person should seek immediate medical attention at a hospital emergency department.
How is a tension headache diagnosed?
Most tension-type headaches are diagnosed based on a complete and comprehensive history and physical examination. No further diagnostic studies are needed for people who have normal neurological examination findings and are otherwise healthy.
In contrast, people with chronic tension-type headache, regardless of whether they have normal neurological examination findings, should have a CT scan and MRI. Although this sophisticated imaging does not diagnose a specific type of headache syndrome, it may prove invaluable in excluding other causes of the headaches. Thyroid function studies, complete blood cell count, and metabolic screening should also be performed.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 6/2/2016
Manish K Singh, MD
James H Halsey, MD
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