The Short-Lasting Headaches Including Hypnic Headache

  • Anna CohenEmail author
  • Giorgio Lambru
Part of the Headache book series (HEAD)


The trigeminal autonomic cephalalgias (TACs) can be considered a spectrum of headache disorders, which differs in attacks duration and frequency. Cluster headache on one end of the spectrum has the longest attack duration and the lowest frequency of attacks of the TACs. Paroxysmal hemicrania, SUNCT (short-lasting unilateral neuralgiform headache attacks with conjunctival injection and tearing) and SUNA (short-lasting unilateral neuralgiform headache attacks with cranial autonomic symptoms) on the other end of the spectrum are characterised by very short-lasting but extremely frequent headache attacks. Identifying these rarer forms of TACs is paramount in view of their different response to treatment compared to cluster headache.

This chapter will focus on the description of the epidemiological, clinical and treatment aspects of SUNCT and SUNA. Furthermore it will provide clinical insights on the differential diagnosis of the broad group of primary short-lasting headache disorders, including primary stabbing headache, hypnic headache, trigeminal neuralgia, primary cough headache, primary exercise headache, primary headache associated with cold stimulus, laughter-induced headache, and primary sexual headache.


SUNCT SUNA Trigeminal autonomic cephalalgias Pituitary Hypnic headache Stabbing headache Lamotrigine Trigeminal neuralgia 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Royal Free Hospital LondonLuton and Dunstable University HospitalLondonUK
  2. 2.Guy’s and St Thomas’ HospitalLondonUK

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