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Headache, pain radiating to the neck and chest. Not responding to headache medication

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Internal Medicine Specialist
Practicing since : 1998
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I have a headache on the right side on my head radiating down into my neck and into the right side of my chest. It hurts to breath. Headache medicine isnt helping. what could this be?
Posted Fri, 1 Jun 2012 in Headache and Migraines
Answered by Dr. Jasvinder Singh 1 hour later
Thanks for posting your query.

The pain and headache that you are having can be due to cervical spondolysis or due to it muscle spasm of the occipitalis and other muscles of the scalp. The spasm can be so intense that the muscle will feel bruised or sore even after the tension has been released.These muscle spasms then cause primary headache like tension headache.

Apply alternate warm and cold compresses and take some over the counter NSAID analgesic(pain reliever) like ibuprofen(advil/motrin) or acetaminophen after consulting your doctor. Application of topical muscle relaxant to the part is also helpful.

If it is cervical spondolysis, cervical collars and traction also help. But for confirming cervical spondolysis, you need to get a X-ray/ MRI of the area done.

It is also better if you correct any posture imbalances that you may have, whether in a sitting posture or in a standing posture like you should avoid sitting on computers for long.

It is also very important to make sure that the pillow you use under your head is the correct size and thickness for your body. Make adjustments in your diet and add lots of calcium XXXXXXX foods like curd, milk etc in your diet.

Hope this answers your query. If you have additional questions or follow up queries then please do not hesitate in writing to us. I will be happy to answer your queries.

Please accept my answer if you have no further queries.

Wishing you good health.

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