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Acute Headache

Medically reviewed by Last updated on May 6, 2024.

What is an acute headache?

An acute headache is pain or discomfort that may start suddenly and get worse quickly. You may have an acute headache only when you feel stress or eat certain foods. Other acute headache pain can happen every day, and sometimes several times a day.

What are the most common types of acute headache?

Headache Types

What causes acute headaches?

The cause of your headache may not be known. The following can trigger a headache:

How is the type of acute headache diagnosed and treated?

Your healthcare provider will ask you to describe your pain and rate it on a scale from 1 to 10. Tell the provider how often you have headaches and how long they last. Also describe any other symptoms you have along with headaches, such as dizziness or blurred vision. You may need tests including a CT scan to make sure there is not a leak in any blood vessels.

What can I do to manage my symptoms?

Treatment options

The following list of medications are related to or used in the treatment of this condition.

View more treatment options

What can I do to prevent an acute headache?

When should I seek immediate care?

When should I call my doctor?

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your healthcare providers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.