Cluster Headache Differential Diagnoses

Updated: Apr 26, 2017
  • Author: Michelle Blanda, MD; Chief Editor: Tarakad S Ramachandran, MBBS, MBA, MPH, FAAN, FACP, FAHA, FRCP, FRCPC, FRS, LRCP, MRCP, MRCS  more...
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Diagnostic Considerations

In addition to the conditions listed in the differential diagnosis, other problems to be considered include the following:

  • Acute hypertension (including response to pressors, pheochromocytoma, and preeclampsia)
  • Allergen exposure
  • Arteriovenous malformations
  • Brainstem syndromes
  • Cerebral venous thrombosis [10]
  • Connective tissue disorder (eg, systemic lupus erythematosus)
  • Cyclical migraine
  • Eye disorders (eg, acute optic neuritis and acute glaucoma)
  • Hemicrania (continual or paroxysmal)
  • Ice-pick headaches
  • Intracranial neoplasm
  • Intracranial trauma
  • Interior carotid artery dissection
  • Intermittent hydrocephalus
  • Metastatic lung carcinoma
  • Nasopharyngeal carcinoma
  • Malignant and nonmalignant pain syndromes
  • Medication adverse effect
  • Pituitary tumors
  • Raeder paratrigeminal syndrome
  • Sleep apnea headache
  • SUNA (short-lasting unilateral neuralgiform headache attacks with cranial autonomic symptoms)
  • SUNCT (short-lasting unilateral neuralgiform headache attacks with conjunctival injection and tearing)
  • Vertebral artery aneurysm

Differential Diagnoses