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Tension headache due to anxiety and stress - Online Doctor Chats

Date : 21-Feb-2012
User rating for this question
Very Good Posted in: Headache and Migraines
Answered by

General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2004
Answered : 40 Questions
User :   My husband is 53, typically in extremely good health, non-smoker, regular but not heavy drinker. His only medical issue is asthma (not severe). He is 6 ft and weighs about 155 pounds (down about 15 pounds from a year ago). Last week he began having intermittent bouts of tachycardia at night that made it difficult to sleep. A few days ago he developed a fever, felt generally unwell and woke up with a severe headache. Eventually the pain was so bad that he was moaning and we almost went to the emergency room. NO OTC pain killer seemed to make any difference. This happened several nights in a row although the fever disappeared after a day and a half (he vomited once during that time). Each night the headache reemerges and is so severe that he cannot sleep. It happens during the day too but appears to be more manageable at that time. It feels worse when he lays down and is not even remotely alleviated by naproxen, aspirin or ibuprofen (we have not tried acetaminophen). He has almost no appetite. The GP suggested that it was stress and would not prescribe any other kind of painkiller. Although I understand that his symptoms are common in an anxiety/depressive episode it is not at all like my husband to react that way. Do you have any other ideas? Should we seek other medical opinions? Thank you so much for your help!
Doctor :   Hi
Doctor :   Dr XXX here
User :   Hi.
Doctor :   Let me read your query
User :   Thanks.
Doctor :   Ok
Doctor :   Is his headache one sided
User :   Yes, it begins at the lower back of his head (right side) and radiates up into the head from there
Doctor :   Then its most probably tension headache
Doctor :   This is more realted to stress an anxiety
User :   Yes, that is what the doctor said but it is very unlike him. Are there any other possibilities? Cluster headache? I know it typically effects the eye but it wondered.
Doctor :   That cant be confirmed without examniation
Doctor :   I would suggest an EEG for the same
User :   OK. Thank you for your help.
Doctor :   And avoid high caffiene intake
User :   Yes, he has already stopped drinking tea.
Doctor :   And keep him stress free so that his symptoms could come down
User :   That is impossible but we will do our best.
Doctor :   And regarding cluster headache there will be associated blurring vision
User :   Ok.
User :   THank you.
Doctor :   Wishing him a speedy recovery
User :   THanks.
Doctor :   Thanks for consulting me]
Doctor :   Bye for now
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