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You are here : 3-RX.com > Medical Encyclopedia > Diseases and Conditions > Headache: Prevention & Expectations
      Category : Health Centers > Headache


Headache | Symptoms & Signs | Diagnosis & Tests | Prevention & Expectations | Treatment & Monitoring

What can be done to prevent the condition?

Many causes of headaches are not preventable. An individual may develop headaches after exposure to alcohol, caffeine, chocolate, or stress. Avoiding those triggers can help prevent headaches.

Medications that can help prevent migraine headaches include:

  • beta-blockers, such as propranolol, and nadolol
  • calcium channel blockers, such as verapamil
  • tricyclic antidepressants, such as amitriptyline, and nortriptyline
  • cyproheptadine
  • anticonvulsants, such as valproic acid and gabapentin
  • lithium
  • methysergide maleate
  • What are the long-term effects of the condition?

    Most people do not have any significant long-term effects because their headaches are benign and recur infrequently. However, vascular headaches can result in significant loss of quality of life. An individual with a brain tumor, bleeding, or meningitis is at risk for severe illness and death.

    What are the risks to others?

    Headaches are not contagious and pose no risk to others. If the underlying cause of the headache is an infection such as meningitis, the infection may be highly contagious. Some headaches, such as migraines, tend to run in families.

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    Headache: Diagnosis & Tests


    Headache: Treatment & Monitoring

    Author: James Broomfield, MD
    Reviewer: Eileen McLaughlin, RN, BSN
    Date Reviewed: 07/12/01

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