Hospital said son's constant headache would go away in 14 days?

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  • Full Question:

    My son has had a constant headache.  After two hospitals, he was told he has an untreatable headache and it should go away in 14 days.  What would cause this? Patricia.


    Full Answer:

    Dear Patricia;


    They said what? Seriously, that's no answer. There are over 300 headache disorders, and without knowing more, we simply don't know what information to give you.


    At the hospital, did they, by any chance, tell you that he shouldn't take pain medications - either over-the-counter or prescription - too many days? Taking any kind of pain medication (even simple over-the-counter products such as acetaminophen, ibuprofen, etc.) more than two or three days a week can make matters worse by causing medication overuse headache (MOH), aka rebound. See Medication Overuse Headache - When the Remedy Backfires for more information on this.

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    You said "two hospitals." Were these emergency room visits, or did his doctor send him to the hospital? At this point, the best recommendation we can make is to get him to a headache specialist. It’s important to note that neurologists aren’t necessarily Migraine and headache specialists. Take a look at the article Migraine and Headache Specialists - What's So Special? If you need help finding a Migraine specialist, see Migraine and Headache Specialist Listings.


    We would have liked to be able to give you more information, and we hope this has been of some help.


    Thank you for your question,
    David Watson, MD, and Teri Robert


    About Ask the Clinician:

    Dr. David Watson is a UCNS certified migraine and headache specialists and director of the Headache Center at West Virginia University. He and Lead Health Guide Teri Robert, team up to answer your questions about headaches and Migraines. You can read more about Dr. Watson or more about Teri Robert.


    If you have a question, please click HERE. Accepted questions will be answered by publishing the answers here. Due to the number of questions submitted, no questions will be answered privately, and questions will be accepted only when submitted via THIS FORM. Please do not submit questions via email, private message, or blog comments. Thank you.


    Please note: We cannot diagnose, suggest specific treatment, or handle emergencies via the Internet. Please do not ask us to diagnose; see your physician for diagnosis. For an overview of how we can help and questions we can and can't answer, please see Seeking Migraine and Headache Diagnoses and Medical Advice.


    We hope you find this general medical and health information useful, but this Q & A is meant to support not replace the professional medical advice you receive from your doctor. For all personal medical and health matters, including decisions about diagnoses, medications and other treatment options, you should always consult your doctor. See full Disclaimer.


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  • Last updated September 24, 2014.

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Published On: October 13, 2014