The International Headache Society has established a comprehensive classification that includes more than 150 categories of headache. The most common types of primary headaches are tension headaches, migraines, cluster headaches, and cluster headaches. This condition is a neurological problem that causes periodic episodes of severe pain. Cluster headaches are one of the most painful types of headaches.
They often attack in cyclical patterns. The person will have frequent episodes of cluster headaches, and then the headaches will completely stop for a period of time. It is believed that chronic headaches may evolve from tension-type headaches or be initiated by neck injuries or tiredness. These types of headache share many common signs and symptoms, so a clear understanding of each helps prevent a delay in diagnosis and inadequate or ineffective treatment.
Diagnosis requires the exclusion of secondary headache and migraine disorders, which may occur with tension-type headache phenotypes. Approximately 98% of patients who present for medical evaluation will have a primary type of headache. Tension headache is characterized by recurrent episodes of relatively non-disabling headache with few, if any, associated features. Occipital neuralgia Occipital neuralgia is a relatively rare type of primary headache that can occur when the occipital nerves that run from the top of the spinal cord at the base of the neck to the scalp become inflamed or irritated.