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Table 1 The most important types of headache and facial pain

From: Reference programme: diagnosis and treatment of headache disorders and facial pain. Danish Headache Society, 3rd edition, 2020

Type Probable diagnosis Description
Acute headache Subarachnoid haemorrhage, and others. Acute onset, severe headache +/− neurological symptoms
Episodic Headache Migraine +/− aura Pulsating headache, aggravation by physical activity with nausea, phono- and photophobia
Tension-type headache Pressure headache without associated symptoms
Cluster headache and others Unilateral headache with ipsilateral autonomic facial symptoms
Trigeminal neuralgia Seconds lasting unilateral severe
Chronic headache Chronic tension-type headache Pressure headache without associated symptoms or medication overuse headache
Medication-overuse headache Use of acute pain medication more than 10–15 days per month
Intracranial hypertension, incl. Brain tumor headache Frequent and increasing headache with nausea and neurological symptoms
  1. The individual patient can suffer from different types of headache and facial pain. There are several headache disorders, which are secondary to other diseases. Some of these secondary headaches are serious, but generally these are rare and less than 1% of all headache patients in primary care (see section “Secondary headaches”)