Author(s): Forsyth PA, Posner JB
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Abstract We examined 111 consecutive patients with primary or metastatic brain tumors identified by CT or MRI to characterize brain tumor headache. The median age was 44 years; 34\% had primary and 66\% metastatic tumors. Headaches were present in 48\%, equally for primary and metastatic brain tumors. Headaches were similar to tension-type in 77\%, migraine-type in 9\%, and other types in 14\%. The typical headache was bifrontal but worse ipsilaterally, and was the worst symptom in only 45\% of patients. Unlike true tension-type headaches, brain tumor headaches were worse with bending over in 32\%, and nausea or vomiting was present in 40\% of patients. The "classic" early morning brain tumor headache is uncommon. Nausea, vomiting, an abnormal neurologic examination, or a significant, change in prior headache pattern suggest that the headache may be caused by a tumor.
This article was published in Neurology
and referenced in Journal of Brain Tumors & Neurooncology