Acute headache in general neurology of China: Cause changes and predictors of short-term outcome


Background: Although patients with acute headache frequently present in emergency department, the causes and predictors of short-term outcome in patients with acute headache in general neurology have not been adequately investigated. Methods: We prospectively reviewed the medical records of 130 hospitalized acute headache pa-tients in general neurology of China. Their initial CT scan was assessed, as was their lumbar puncture (LP) examination if performed. Results: The main cause of acute headache was acute secondary headache (80.8%), which was mainly attributable to acute cerebrovascular events (72.4%) followed by intracranial infection (19.0%). Among the 10.8% of patients who died during hospitalization most (85.7%) had subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH). Significant predictors of survival were severe headache versus thunderclap headache, meningismus, de-layed loss of consciousness, and hypertension (all p < 0.05). Multiple logistic regression analyses showed significant differences in severe headache or thunderclap headache (OR, 0.255; 95%CI, 0.066 - 0.990; p = 0.048) and delayed loss of consciousness (OR, 0.060; 95%CI, 0.016 - 0.224, p = 0.000) between patients who died and those who survived. Conclusions: The main underlying cause of hospitalized acute headache was acute cerebrovascular events. Severe headache and delayed loss of consciousness are predictors for poor outcome of acute headache.

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Wang, G. , Zhou, Y. , Chen, X. , Wang, H. , Yang, T. , Chang, C. , Wang, Y. , Gu, H. and Tong, D. (2012) Acute headache in general neurology of China: Cause changes and predictors of short-term outcome. World Journal of Neuroscience, 2, 98-102. doi: 10.4236/wjns.2012.22014.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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