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What causes sharp pain at the back of head, dizziness and nausea?

May 2014
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Practicing since : 2002
Answered : 6505 Questions
Hi! I'm a 37 year old female, for some time now, I've been waking up to a sharp pain in the back of my head, I get dizzy very easily, and am nautcious some times. I have been putting off getting an MRI to check if I have the same disease that my mother, 62, died of a year ago, AVM. What are my chances of having it? And why, do I get these severe headaches all of a sudden, and after about an hour disappear? Sincerely, XXXXX
Posted Sat, 21 Dec 2013 in Headache and Migraines
Answered by Dr. Vivek Chail 46 minutes later
Brief Answer: Please find detailed answer below Detailed Answer: Hi XXXXX, Thanks for writing in to us. I have read through your query in detail. Sorry to hear about your mother who had an AVM. Research has been done on AVMs and few types of vascular malformations are known to be hereditary and thus are known to have a genetic basis. Some evidence also suggests that at least some of these lesions are acquired later in life as a result of injury to the central nervous system. Research literature says and I quote "By studying patterns of familial occurrence, researchers have established that one type of cavernous malformation involving multiple lesion formation is caused by a genetic mutation in chromosome 7. This genetic mutation appears in many ethnic groups, but it is especially frequent in a large population of Hispanic Americans living in the Southwest; these individuals share a common ancestor in whom the genetic change occurred. Some other types of vascular defects of the central nervous system are part of larger medical syndromes known to be hereditary. They include hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasia (also known as Osler-Weber-Rendu disease), Sturge-Weber syndrome, Klippel-Trenaunay syndrome, Parkes-Weber syndrome, and Wyburn-Mason syndrome." However, it may not be true that you are also affected by an AVM. Headaches have over a hundred causes and a careful clinical examination and investigations are important in your situation. Most of the headaches may not have any structural cause and are grouped under migraines and tension or anxiety and stress associated headaches. Treatment is available for most headaches and prevention is by avoiding triggering factors in most patients. I suggest you consult a neurologist and get your complete neurological clinical examination done. If necessary, a MRI scan can also be done. This is particularly important because your mother had an AVM and we must exclude it in you. Hope your query is answered. Do write back if you have any doubts. Regards, Dr.Vivek
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