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Neurology Advisor Interviews Dr. Williams About Treating Post-Traumatic Headache After Concussion


It is estimated that traumatic brain injuries (TBI) affect nearly 1.7 million people annually in the United States.1 The most commonly reported complaint associated with TBI is headache, which can result from mild, moderate, or severe injury. The International Headache Society defines post-traumatic headache (PTH) as one that develops within 7 days following TBI or after regaining consciousness following head trauma. PTH is associated with a range of comorbidities, including psychiatric, cognitive, and sleep-related issues.2

While PTH often resolves within 3 months, a substantial number of patients experience chronic PTH. The prevalence rate is 47% to 95% in patients with mild TBI, and 20% to 38% in patients with moderate to severe TBI.1 “Mechanisms are unclear and likely multi-factorial,” Vernon B. Williams, MD, founding director of the Center for Sports Neurology and Pain Medicine at the Kerlan-Jobe Orthopaedic Clinic in Los Angeles, California told Neurology Advisor. “The energy deficit and widespread activation associated with concussion may have some overlap with mechanisms involved with migraine.”

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