Tension Headache

The most common of all headaches, the one with greatest socioeconomic impact, the least studied, & the most nondescript — a diagnosis of exclusion.  Pain is bilateral, not severe, with no criteria to suggest migraine or cluster, much less anything serious.  Chronic tension headaches have been described as “featureless.”

Research criteria:

  • duration 30 minutes to a week;
  • 10 separate episodes required for diagnosis.

The more disabling the recurrent headache, the more you should consider it might possibly be an atypical migraine (see posting “Recurrent Headaches”.  Consider therapeutic trials.