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Base of Head Pain

  Today I experienced an excruciating pain located at the base of my head.  It was so intense I literally wanted to die.  I took three ibruprofen, and after about 20 minutes was able to deal with the pain at which time I took 3 more tablets.  After about an hour, I was left with a dull headache at the same location.  A hot shower seemed to help.
  I've experienced this type of headache before but not to this degree.  I also have a history of migraines which began when I was 5 years old.  Is this a BAM or could it be something else?  Any other thoughts?
Thanks for your question.  When pain symptoms suddenly assume an unusual
intensity, it is always a cause a cause of concern for the patient.  The
extenuating circumstances of your pain was that it seems to be relieved
by anti-inflamatory medications and local heat (hot shower).  These factor
suggest a muscular/tension-type cause.  The posterior neck muscles are a
very strong muscle group that attaches to the back of the head and are
a common source of common source of tension-type headache/pain.  It is
always important to know the circumstances when the pain occurred, such
as physical activity, time of day when it occurred, any other associated
symptoms, etc.  
If you live in the Cleveland area, and would like to be evaluated
by a neurologist specialized in headaches, the Headache Center at
the Cleveland Clinic could be one of your options.  For an appointment
with one of our headache specialists (Drs. Gretter, Kunkel, or Yuska-Mays)
please call 1-216-444-5559 or 1-800-CCF-CARE.
I hope this information is helpful.
This information is provided for general medical education purposes only.
Please consult your doctor regarding diagnostic and treatment options.

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