Throat / Neck
Headache secondary to neck, pharynx and larynx (throat and voice box) conditions is not a common isolated presenting symptom. It is generally referred via branches of the lower cranial nerves or the cervical spinal nerves, or due to spread of pathology to head structures such as the meninges (coverings) of the brain.
The following conditions not uncommonly present with pain:
Inflammatory / Degenerative Cervical Spine Pathology:
Osteoarthritis and osteoarthrosis of the cervical spine due to trauma or age as well as rarer conditions such as spinal cord tumours may cause headache. Such conditions are discussed elsewhere but need to be considered particularly if the pain/headache is deep-seated at the lower region of the skull or situated over the occipital regions or about the ear.
Tonsillitis and complications such as quinsy (peritonsillar abscess) may present with headache but mostly in association with other symptoms, notably throat pain and fever. Neck space abscesses due to complications of tonsillitis, dental infection, foreign bodies (eg, impacted meat/poultry bones), tumours may also present with headache and high fever.
Tumours: Both benign and malignant tumours may cause headache by invading or compressing nerve and vascular (blood vessel) structures which have connections higher up. Involvement / invasion of the brain and spinal cord may cause headache due to meningeal irritation or meningitis.
Cancer of the tonsil, tongue base, larynx and pharynx can present with isolated one-sided ear pain as the only symptom. In heavy smokers and drinkers of alcohol, this is a serious symptom and must be carefully assessed.
Ear, Nose and Throat Problems may contribute to Headaches and Migraines so it is important to have them professionally addressed. It is also important to investigate for other potential causes, as many cases of Headaches and Migraines have more than one ingredient.
Key Words:sinus pains, sinus, sinusitis, rhinosinusitis, rhinitis, tumours, infections, sinus infection, sinus headaches, nose pains, nose, trigemminal neuralgias, temporal arteritis, facial cellulitis, ent specialist, ent surgeon, ear nose throat specialists,
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Mr Anthony Guiney MBBS .FRACS
Profession: EAR NOSE THROAT, HEAD & NECK SURGEON
Address: Essendon ENT, Head and Neck Clinic
62 Buckley Street Essendon 3040
Phone: 03 9375 2099
Also consulting in Blackburn
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