headache


headache

Pain in the upper portion of the head. Episodic tension headaches are the most common, usually causing mild to moderate pain on both sides. They result from sustained contraction of face and neck muscles, often due to fatigue, stress, or frustration. Headaches are treated with aspirin, acetaminophen, or other NSAIDs. Chronic daily headaches are similar but more frequent. They usually have a psychological cause and respond to certain antidepressants. They may also come from overuse of pain relievers. Migraine and cluster headaches are vascular headaches. Headaches may also be caused by distension of arteries at the base of the brain, from fever, hangover, or an attack of high blood pressure. Headache can be a symptom of meningitis, hemorrhagic stroke, or tumour.

This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
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