Factors Associated with Sport-Related Post-concussion Headache and Opportunities for Treatment
Purpose of Review
The purpose of this review is to (1) describe factors both pre- and post-injury that are associated with post-concussion headache, (2) describe the influence of post-concussion headache on recovery following concussion, and (3) provide potential post-concussion treatment options that may reduce the burden of headache, as well as other symptoms to facilitate recovery.
Various factors may be associated with post-concussion headache presentation. These may include pre-injury or historical factors such as sex, family and self-history of headache and migraine, concussion history, and mood disorders. In addition, post-injury presentation factors for consideration may include injury mechanism, symptom clusters, cervicogenic dysfunction, and post-concussion physiologic dysfunction. Despite this complex interplay of factors, many treatment options may improve headache symptoms and recovery post-concussion including rehabilitation programs focusing on deficits such as visual-vestibular dysfunction, sub-symptom threshold exercise, and potential pharmacological interventions.
Concussion is a complex injury that results in a variety of sequelae with headache being one of the most common. Understanding factors related to post-concussion headache presentation and the available options for treatment may improve patient care and outcomes post-concussion.
KeywordsPost-traumatic headache Exercise
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of Interest
Christina B. Vander Vegt, Michael Cools, and Kevin Carnerio declare no conflict of interest. Johna K. Register-Mihalik reports grants from NOCSAE, CDC/NCIPC, NFL, NCAA-DOD Grand Alliance, other from Allied Health Education, and other from Senaptec LLC, all outside of the submitted work.
Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent
This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.
Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance
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