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My friend has been experiencing stabbing pain in the back of his head. He said it lasts about 20 seconds, goes away and then returns. He has had as many as 20 episodes during the day. He says it seems better when he moves his head from side to side. I can't convince him to see a Dr. Please advise. Lawrence.
As much as we'd like to help, you already know the answer. Your friend needs to see a doctor. Unexplained head pain should always be investigated and diagnosed. Statistically, it's unlikely to be dangerous, but you never know. The only person who can definitively tell him what these pains are is a doctor who can review his medical history and family medical history, discuss his symptoms with him, and examine him - in person.
One possibility is ice pick headaches, which last for just seconds. You can find information about them in Ice Pick Headaches - The Basics . Nobody can diagnose via the Internet, so we can...
I'm 15, and for the last 3/4 days I have been having stabbing like pains on the right side of my head, mainly when I first wake up or stand up! I am a worrier and tend to think of extreme things and make myself worried even more, I am going to the doctors tomorrow but I am afraid they will just give me pain killers. Leigh.
We hope your doctor was able to explain the pains and help you. Before prescribing medications, doctors should diagnose what the pains are if at all possible. You don't mention how long these pains last. If they're only seconds long, they might be ice pick headaches. You can find more information in Ice Pick Headaches - The Basics .
If your doctor isn’t able to help you, it may well be time to consult a Migraine and headache specialist. It’s important to note that neurologists aren’t necessarily Migraine and headache specialists
I am 52, oxygen. asthema, and severe copd. I have started to have very sharp very painful stabbing pain on left side of my head temple area, almost above the ear. it stabs very quickly without warning. for a few seconds to a minute, then goes away for about 10 mintues and then it happens again. It started this morning. what can it be? Vonnie.
What you're describing could be ice pick headaches. You can find more information in Ice Pick Headaches - The Basics . That said, nobody can confirm that via the Internet, so you really should see your doctor about these pains.
Good luck, John Claude Krusz and Teri Robert
To review other questions from our Ask the Clinician Column, browse the Ask the Clinician archives .
If you need help finding a Migraine and headache specialist, visit our listing of Patient Recommended Specialists .
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