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  • Chronic headache in back of head please help!

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    Old 03-16-2012, 02:22 AM   #1
    cpz91
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    Chronic headache in back of head please help!

    Hello I appreciate all responses. About four years ago I was on an airplane when a man dropped his suitcase on my head. It hurt but I didn't think much of it. Then a week later I got very drunk at a party and all was well until I woke up the next day with the worst feeling in my head I had ever felt. This was not just a hangover. I had a burning feeling like my head was on fire and shooting pains up and down my head and in my neck. This burning feeling in my head did not go away. It felt like every muscle in my head (especially in the back part of my head) was clenched very tight and would not relent. I have been to almost every different type of doctor and I have not had a diagnosis yet. No medications do anything to relieve this horrible feeling. I had an MRI done recently of my head and neck and they came back normal. Now it is four years later and my symptoms have changed a little bit. I no longer describe this as PAIN but more of a feeling of extreme discomfort. The muscles in the back of my head and around my ears are still tight (or sore or inflamed, I don't know exactly) and will not relent. My scalp is always tender and it hurts to touch it. I can't sleep because of this problem. This issue seems to get worse when I go for walks, when I drive, or when I carry something heavy. I can often feel a nerve or something pulsating in my neck and up into my head. For a while I thought I might have occipital neuralgia, but everyone describes that as a sharp shooting pain, which is not what I have. I used to feel shooting pains that radiated from my neck to my head and even to my teeth and mouth sometimes. For some reason when I press down on the back of my neck my head feels a little better. Could this be occipital neuralgia? I was given a nerve block once but it did not do anything. Maybe it is a pinched nerve in my neck? But if that is the case shouldn't an MRI pick that up? Maybe this is something else? Please give me your input. Thank you

     
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    Old 03-20-2012, 12:31 PM   #2
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    Re: Chronic headache in back of head please help!

    You may indeed have occipital neuralgia, or you may have a pinched nerve somewhere along the distribution of one of the cervical nerves. The occipital nerve is a branch of C2 (the second cervical nerve,) which is the main nerve that transmits pain signals for the scalp on the back of the head. Relatively minor trauma to this nerve may not be visible on an MRI, but can still cause a significant amount of pain and/or discomfort.

    Treatment of nerve pain can be difficult, and may include medications, nerve blocks, deep tissue massage, application of cold packs, or even meditation or acupuncture. A good pain doctor, particularly in a pain clinic setting, should be able to offer relief.

    Good luck!

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by cpz91 View Post
    Hello I appreciate all responses. About four years ago I was on an airplane when a man dropped his suitcase on my head. It hurt but I didn't think much of it. Then a week later I got very drunk at a party and all was well until I woke up the next day with the worst feeling in my head I had ever felt. This was not just a hangover. I had a burning feeling like my head was on fire and shooting pains up and down my head and in my neck. This burning feeling in my head did not go away. It felt like every muscle in my head (especially in the back part of my head) was clenched very tight and would not relent. I have been to almost every different type of doctor and I have not had a diagnosis yet. No medications do anything to relieve this horrible feeling. I had an MRI done recently of my head and neck and they came back normal. Now it is four years later and my symptoms have changed a little bit. I no longer describe this as PAIN but more of a feeling of extreme discomfort. The muscles in the back of my head and around my ears are still tight (or sore or inflamed, I don't know exactly) and will not relent. My scalp is always tender and it hurts to touch it. I can't sleep because of this problem. This issue seems to get worse when I go for walks, when I drive, or when I carry something heavy. I can often feel a nerve or something pulsating in my neck and up into my head. For a while I thought I might have occipital neuralgia, but everyone describes that as a sharp shooting pain, which is not what I have. I used to feel shooting pains that radiated from my neck to my head and even to my teeth and mouth sometimes. For some reason when I press down on the back of my neck my head feels a little better. Could this be occipital neuralgia? I was given a nerve block once but it did not do anything. Maybe it is a pinched nerve in my neck? But if that is the case shouldn't an MRI pick that up? Maybe this is something else? Please give me your input. Thank you

     
    Old 03-24-2012, 06:02 AM   #3
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    Re: Chronic headache in back of head please help!

    Thank you for your response. I have looked into occipital neuralgia as a definite possibility. I had a nerve block once when all this first started but it didn't do anything. I have also noticed that the food I eat seems to play a role. I thought I would try to heal my nerves by taking b12 supplements. Whenever I do take these I get this awful burning sensation in my head hours later. Could this be nerve regeneration of some sort? Should I be concerned about all this?

     
    Old 03-24-2012, 07:36 AM   #4
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    Re: Chronic headache in back of head please help!

    The biochemistry of nerve pain is not well understood, and much work remains to be done concerning the role of diet and dietary supplements. You should mention your reactions to your doctor. It is likely that some nerve regeneration is taking place, but describe your burning pains to your doctor. I'm afraid I have no answers for you. As for the nerve blocks being ineffective, this is common. The location of the injection relative to any nerve trauma is critical, so nerve blocks are often hit or miss. Many other therapies and diagnostic tools are available, so remain vigilant. While neuropathic pain is notoriously difficult, pain doctors have many options to try. It is likely that some combination of medications, physical therapy, diet, exercise, and non-pharmacological therapies will provide you with significant relief.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by cpz91 View Post
    Thank you for your response. I have looked into occipital neuralgia as a definite possibility. I had a nerve block once when all this first started but it didn't do anything. I have also noticed that the food I eat seems to play a role. I thought I would try to heal my nerves by taking b12 supplements. Whenever I do take these I get this awful burning sensation in my head hours later. Could this be nerve regeneration of some sort? Should I be concerned about all this?

     
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