Overview | Migraines | Tension Headaches | Cluster Headaches | Diagnosis | Warning Signs


head pain treatment options laurel, hyattsville, lanham, maryland, washington dc, Choice Pain, Dr Tristan Shockley, pain management center Maryland, chronic pain treatment Washington DC, chronic pain treatment Maryland, spinal injections for back pain Maryland, non-surgical treatment for back pain Washington DC, non-surgical treatment for back pain Maryland, home remedies for back pain Maryland, home remedies for back pain Washington DC, spine injections for back pain Washington DC, pain care treatment options Washington DC, spinal injections Laurel Maryland, injections for back pain Washington DC, injections for back pain Washington DC

The head is one of the most common sites of pain in the body. A headache is often described as aching or pain that occurs in one or more areas of the head, face, mouth, or neck. Nearly everyone gets a headache at one time or another. Headaches may be chronic, recurrent or occasional. The range of pain often varies from mild to severe enough to disrupt daily activities. Headaches encompass the network of nerve fibers in the tissues, muscles, and blood vessels located in the head and at the base of the skull.

The most common types of headache are classified as primary, secondary and cranial neuralgias, facial pain, and other headaches. There are three types of primary headaches: tension headache, cluster headache, and migraine.

Studies show in the United States, more than 45 million people—including more than the 33 million sufferers of asthma, diabetes, and heart disease—suffer from chronic, recurring headaches. Of this number, 28 million suffer from migraines each year. The cost of these headaches in absenteeism and medical expenses may be estimated as high as $50 billion per year.

Secondary headaches are caused by an injury, other illness or condition, such as cerebrovascular disease, head trauma, infection, tumor and metabolic disorder. Head pain may be attributed to syndromes involving the eyes, ears, neck, teeth or sinuses. In cases of secondary headaches, the underlying condition must be diagnosed and treated. It also may be possible that certain types of medication may produce headache as a side effect.

A sudden or severe secondary headache that occurs following a blow to the head, that interferes with normal activity, or that accompanies other symptoms (i.e., disorientation, dizziness, loss of consciousness or pain in the eye or ear, fever) should be evaluated by a physician as soon as possible.


Types of Headaches

Headache Diagnosis

Diagnosis of headaches is based on symptoms and a thorough medical examination, including the following:

  • Observation
  • Physical examination
  • Blood tests including thyroid, liver, and kidney function tests
  • Eye examination
  • Family history
  • Medical history (including medications and characteristics of the headache)
  • Neurological examination
  • Sleep habits

Migraines are a chronic disorder, but oftentimes they may go undiagnosed and untreated. Individuals that experience signs and symptoms of migraine, should track and record their attacks along with treatments used. The next step is to make an appointment with a doctor to discuss the migraines and decide on a treatment plan.

Headache Warning Signals:

Even those with a history of headaches should see a doctor if the pattern changes or if headaches suddenly feel different. Seek immediate medical attention if you have any of the following signs or symptoms, as they may indicate another, more serious medical problem, such as a concussion, blood clot or brain tumor:

  • A sudden, severe headache like a thunderclap
  • A new severe headache that is felt on both sides of the head
  • Headache along with fever, stiff neck, rash, mental confusion, seizures, double vision, weakness, numbness or difficulty speaking
  • Headache following a recent sore throat or respiratory infection
  • Headache following a head injury, especially if the headache worsens
  • A chronic headache that worsens after coughing, exertion, straining or a sudden movement
  • New headache pain if you're older than 55

Imaging studies of the brain, such as CT scans or MRI, may be necessary to rule out any serious underlying medical problem, such as brain tumor, stroke, high blood pressure or infection. A spinal tap, a procedure in which cerebrospinal spinal fluid is drawn for examination, may be necessary for a differential diagnosis. X-rays or magnetic resonance angiography (MRA) may be performed to evaluate the brain's blood vessels.

In cases where the patient has typical migraine headaches or a family history of migraines, diagnose of the condition may be made based on medical history and a physical exam. However, if headaches are unusual, severe or sudden, certain tests are often performed to rule out other possible causes for the pain.


Disclaimer: The pictures displayed in this website are images of physicians, patients and employees who have consented to have their pictures in this website.

Choice Pain is a regional specialty center for pain management, providing treatment and pain relief for a variety of pain conditions including: back pain, neck pain, pain from arthritis, headache pain, fibromyalgia, TMJ pain, cancer pain and myofascial pain.  Choice Pain — with offices in Hyattsville, Lanham, Gaithersburg, & Dundalk — is referred patients from across the Washington DC and Baltimore region, including nearby cities of: Silver Spring, Baltimore, Bethesda, Rockville, Annapolis, South Laurel.

Prizm Logo
Website Design & Educational Content © Copyright 2018 Prizm Development • Developing Centers of Excellence for Better Healthcare.


To contact CHOICE Pain and Rehabilitation Center, fill in the form below. Your information will be delivered directly to a representative who will follow up with you to answer any questions you have or to help you set up an appointment.


With three locations across the Washington D.C. area, taking the next step towards a pain free life may be easier than you think.

Click below to request an appointment at any of our three D.C. locations.

Make an Appointment


Our Mini-brochure is a great introduction to Choice Pain and Rehabilitation, featuring physician bios, treatment capabilities, and other important information. Feel free to print the print-friendly PDF and bring it with you to your appointment to ask any questions.

View Brochure