Nearly everyone experiences headache from time to time, but an estimated 4% of the general population suffers from chronic daily headaches. If you have been in a car accident recently and are experiencing persistent headaches, you could be suffering from cervicogenic headache. These headaches are called "cervicogenic" because they originate in the cervical spine, or neck.
Patients with whiplash after an auto accident frequently experience dizziness and cervicogenic headache secondary to their initial neck injury. These headaches can be categorized as a type of referred pain caused by damaged nerves, soft tissues, spinal discs, or joints in the neck.
The trigeminal nerve is acranial nerve responsible for facial sensations and functions like chewing or biting. This nerve interacts with sensory fibers in the upper cervical roots. If a nerve is damaged in the cervical spine, such is often the case after whiplash, you may experience referred pain in the face, and above the eye. Cervicogenic headaches also cause pain at the base of the skull and upper back. Symptoms are typically felt more on one side of the body.
Cervicogenic headaches can be difficult to diagnose since they often mimic symptoms of migraine and tension-type headache. However, proper diagnosis will allow you to treat the root of your symptoms in the neck. Estero chiropractor Dr. Green can perform a careful examination to ascertain the cause of your headaches and neck pain. Chiropractic care is a proven method of relief for cervicogenic headaches.
Dr. Green specializes in diagnosing and alleviating auto injuries in Estero, FL. Contact Chiropractic Care and Rehabilitation for relief from headache today.
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Jull G, Trott P, Potter H, et al. A randomized controlled trail of exercise and manipulative therapy for cervicogenic headache. Spine 2002; 27(17):1835-1843.
Haas M, Spegman A, Peterson D, Aickin M, Vavrek D. Dose response and efficacy of spinal manipulation for chronic cervicogenic headache: a pilot randomized controlled trial. The Spine Journal 2010; 10: 117-128.
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