Does this sound like a cluster headache or is it just muscle tension headache?

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Posted by Daniel ( on February 12, 2000 at 08:01:49:

I know this is a lengthy post and that I need to see a doctor about it, but I was hoping that someone could confirm that this was a cluster headache or tell me otherwise.

As a child (8-12) I would get a headache that would feel like lightning going from one side of the head to the other with a hot white poker behind an eye. The only thing the Doc did was say that it was eye strain and the only thing I could do was lay on the couch with my face shoved deep into the recesses of the couch and pass out.

Now I'm 28 and almost every year, since 21, I get these headaches, sometimes 2x a year. When I get these "headaches" the whole ordeal usually lasts several weeks then I am fine until the next year. When I get a headache, it that starts with my neck/back muscles feeling tight (like you wanting a massage or your neck popped), then comes a small very dull ache on one side of the face, sometimes both sides, (feels like you have been smiling for hours non-stop). If I do not get a large dose of medication/caffeine into me then, I will get a cramping in my temple area and it starts burning. It feels like a charlie horse that you are trying to straighten out. This is accompanied by my blood vessels in the area being engorged. My eye starts to droop and my nose on the same side starts running a little. When this happens, the only thing I can think of is trying to relax and hope it goes away. When it ends I feel worn out and want to sleep, but if I try to do that then the headaches seem to come back. The other night I was up from 10:30 - 5:30 trying to make it go away. The only thing that helped in the end was to use oxycodene that I had left over from when I had my wisdom teeth out. I HATE taking medication, but if it could mean the end of the headaches I will.

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