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Ice Pick Headaches - The Basics

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In an article published in Current Pain and Headache Reports, Dr. Todd Rozen summarized the situation of people with ice pick headaches quite succinctly:

"The short-lasting headache syndromes are unique based on their short duration of pain and their associated symptoms. Physicians need to be knowledgeable about these syndromes because each has its own distinct treatment and if the diagnosis is missed, the patient can be burdened with extreme headache-related disability."2

If you're experiencing what you think may be ice pick headaches, please don't just assume that's what they are. Log them in your diary, and go see your doctor. As with any other head pain, there can be too many possible causes to guess. A doctor's diagnosis is vital.


Have you learned about ice pick headaches from this article? Take our quiz, and find out!

For information on types of Migraines and headaches, please see:



1 Newman, Lawrence C., MD. "Effective Management of Ice Pick Pains, SUNCT, and Episodic and Chronic Paroxysmal Hemicrania." Current Pain and Headache Reports 2001, 5:292–299.

2 Rozen, Todd D., MD. Short-lasting Headache Syndromes and Treatment Options. Current Pain and Headache Reports 2004, 8:268–273

3 Young, William B., MD, and Silberstein, Stephen, D., MD. "Migraines and Other Headaches." American Academy of Neurology Press Quality of Life Guide. 2004. pp 140-141.

4 Tepper, Stewart J., MD. "Understanding Migraine and Other Headaches." University Press of Mississippi. 2004. pp 97-98.

Medical review by John Claude Krusz, PhD, MD


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© Teri Robert, 20040 - 2010. Last updated May 28 2010.

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