Secondary headaches occur as a result of an underlying medical or neurological condition. The brain lacks the ability to detect damage to its own neural tissue, so the discomfort suffered with these headaches actually originates from one of the various surrounding tissues or structures in or around the head. Below is a list of secondary headache types and examples of underlying conditions:
– Conditions related to the cranium, face and neck structures: Sinus and ear infections, eye disorders and neck dysfunction.
– Trauma: Whiplash, brain injuries and fractures.
– Vascular disorders: Stroke, intracranial bleeds and malformations.
– Non vascular disorders: Inflammatory diseases, tumours, abnormal spinal fluid pressure and seizures.
– Substance exposure: Medication overuse and withdrawal, alcohol and drug usage.
– Infection: Meningitis, encephalitis and brain abscess.
– Disorder to homeostasis: High altitudes, diving, fasting, dehydration and even space travel!