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5.6 Persistent headache attributed to craniotomy


Headache of more than 3 months’ duration caused by surgical craniotomy.

Diagnostic criteria:
  1. Any headache fulfilling criteria C and D
  2. Surgical craniotomy1 has been performed
  3. Headache is reported to have developed within 7 days after one of the following:
    1. the craniotomy
    2. regaining of consciousness following the craniotomy
    3. discontinuation of medication(s) impairing ability to sense or report headache following the craniotomy
  4. Headache persists for >3 months after its onset
  5. Not better accounted for by another ICHD-3 diagnosis1;2.
  1. When the craniotomy was performed following and because of head injury, code as 5.2.1 Persistent headache attributed to moderate or severe traumatic injury to the head.
  2. When headache following craniotomy becomes persistent, the possibility of 8.2 Medication-overuse headache needs to be considered.

About a quarter of patients who develop 5.5 Acute headache attributed to craniotomy go on to experience 5.6 Persistent headache attributed to craniotomy.