Thunderclap headache

A thunderclap headache is a headache that is severe and sudden (like a thunderclap).cite web |url=http://www.mayoclinic.com/print/thunderclap-headaches/DS00644/DSECTION=all&METHOD=print |title=Thunderclap headaches |accessdate=2006-11-27 |publisher=Mayo Clinic ] Because it may be a sign of a medical emergency, some sources recommend immediate medical attention.

In 25% of cases, a thunderclap headache is an indication of aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH), which often leads to death or severe disability.cite journal |last=Linn |first=F H H |coauthors=G J E Rinkel, A Algra, J van Gijn |year=1998 |month=November |title=Headache characteristics in subarachnoid haemorrhage and benign thunderclap headache |journal=Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry |volume=65 |issue= |pages=791–793 |url=http://jnnp.bmj.com/cgi/content/full/65/5/791 |accessdate=2007-01-09 ] Headaches which accompany SAH are "frequently described as being the worst headache of one's life, although other clinical presentations are possible."cite web |url=http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/481270_3 |title=Evidence-Based Diagnosis of Nontraumatic Headache in the ER |accessdate=2006-11-27 |publisher=Medscape ]

Diagnosis is made via a process of exclusion with accompanying negative computed tomograph and lumbar puncture results.

References


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