- The work up of patients with sudden severe headache centers on excluding subarachnoid hemorrhage, however there are numerous other causes.
With neck rigidity
- subarachnoid hemorrhage
- meningoencephalitis (usually subaacute over 1-2 days)
— cerebellar stroke
— intraventricular hemorrhage (primary or secondary)
Without neck rigidity
- post-traumatic headache
- thunderclap headache
- benign orgasmic or exertional headache
— idiopathic stabbing headache
— cervical artery dissection
— reactions due to MAO inhibitors
References and Links
- Bhidayasiri R, Waters MF, Giza CC. Neurological differential diagnosis: a prioritized approach, Blackwell Publishing 2005.