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What causes sudden onset of headache?

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Posted on Wed, 11 May 2016
Question: I've had a new onset if headaches the past month and had ct and mri scans. when if at all would a spinal tap be necessary or suggested? how do I rule out meningitis?
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Answered by Dr. Neeraj Kumar (17 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
Provide more clinical details regarding headache

Detailed Answer:
Hello XXXXX, Welcome back to HCM,

I have gone through your question and previous discussion with other doctors.
Headache and neck pain without any other deficit and normal imaging requires treatment on lines of primary headache.

You should provide more clinical details of headache :

1) location of headache, unilateral or bilateral
2) severity of pain
3) Onset , duration and rate
4) nature of headache, bursting, throbbing, piercing
5) Associated nausea, vomiting, sensitivity to sound and light
6) Aggravating or relieving factors
7) any fever, ear discharge, seizures, loss of consciousness, visual loss,

Meningitis is usually associated with other features with neck stiffness, fever, vomiting.
If nothing is present in imaging then possibility of meningitis is very unlikely.

CSF study is required to rule out meningitis but not required according to me.

Hope you found the answer helpful.
Do get back to me with details.

Regards
Dr N Kumar
Neurologist
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Arnab Banerjee
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Answered by
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Dr. Neeraj Kumar

Neurologist

Practicing since :2006

Answered : 2263 Questions

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What causes sudden onset of headache?

Brief Answer: Provide more clinical details regarding headache Detailed Answer: Hello XXXXX, Welcome back to HCM, I have gone through your question and previous discussion with other doctors. Headache and neck pain without any other deficit and normal imaging requires treatment on lines of primary headache. You should provide more clinical details of headache : 1) location of headache, unilateral or bilateral 2) severity of pain 3) Onset , duration and rate 4) nature of headache, bursting, throbbing, piercing 5) Associated nausea, vomiting, sensitivity to sound and light 6) Aggravating or relieving factors 7) any fever, ear discharge, seizures, loss of consciousness, visual loss, Meningitis is usually associated with other features with neck stiffness, fever, vomiting. If nothing is present in imaging then possibility of meningitis is very unlikely. CSF study is required to rule out meningitis but not required according to me. Hope you found the answer helpful. Do get back to me with details. Regards Dr N Kumar Neurologist