Cluster headaches

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What is cluster headaches?

A primary headache disorder characterized by severe one-sided pain in and around the eyes and/or temples. They can last from 15 minutes to many hours occurring 1 to 8 times a day. They are often associated with conjunctivitis, teary eyes, nasal congestion, facial sweating, and eyelid edema.

Common symptoms reported by people with cluster headaches

Common symptoms
How bad it is
What people are taking for it

Reports may be affected by other conditions and/or medication side effects. We ask about general symptoms (anxious mood, depressed mood, fatigue, pain, and stress) regardless of condition.
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Treatments taken by people with cluster headaches

Treatment name(s)
Type
How many have tried
Tried for
Treatment name(s)

(Topamax)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
46
Tried for
cluster headaches (46) anxious mood (1)
Treatment name(s)

(Imitrex)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
43
Tried for
cluster headaches (43)
Treatment name(s)

(Verapamil ER)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
38
Tried for
cluster headaches (38)
Treatment name(s)

(Lithium Carbonate ER)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
14
Tried for
cluster headaches (14)
Treatment name(s)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
12
Tried for
cluster headaches (12)
Treatment name(s)

(Neurontin)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
11
Tried for
pain (8) cluster headaches (3)
Treatment name(s)

(Depakote)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
10
Tried for
cluster headaches (10)
Treatment name(s)

(Zoloft)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
8
Tried for
depressed mood (8)
Treatment name(s)

(Elavil)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
7
Tried for
pain (5) anxious mood (1)
1 more
Treatment name(s)

(Klonopin)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
6
Tried for
anxious mood (5) cluster headaches (1)

Data from patients with cluster headaches, who reported starting treatments within the last 5 years.
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Compare treatments taken by people with cluster headaches

Treatment name(s)
Perceived effectiveness
Side effects
Total evaluations
Tried for
Treatment name(s)

(Topamax)
Perceived effectiveness
for cluster headaches (30 evaluations)
Side effects
weight loss memory problems 29 more
Total evaluations
31
Tried for
cluster headaches (46) anxious mood (1)
Treatment name(s)

(Imitrex)
Perceived effectiveness
for cluster headaches (21 evaluations)
Side effects
burning sensation chest pressure 14 more
Total evaluations
22
Tried for
cluster headaches (43)
Treatment name(s)

(Verapamil ER)
Perceived effectiveness
for cluster headaches (22 evaluations)
Side effects
constipation fatigue 7 more
Total evaluations
22
Tried for
cluster headaches (38)
Treatment name(s)

(Lithium Carbonate ER)
Perceived effectiveness
for cluster headaches (11 evaluations)
Side effects
tremor in hands acid reflux 13 more
Total evaluations
13
Tried for
cluster headaches (14)
Treatment name(s)
Perceived effectiveness
for cluster headaches (9 evaluations)
Side effects
Total evaluations
9
Tried for
cluster headaches (12)
Treatment name(s)

(Neurontin)
Perceived effectiveness
for pain (2 evaluations)
Side effects
fatigue burning sensation 2 more
Total evaluations
4
Tried for
pain (8) cluster headaches (3)
Treatment name(s)

(Depakote)
Perceived effectiveness
for cluster headaches (2 evaluations)
Side effects
blood in stool dehydration 6 more
Total evaluations
4
Tried for
cluster headaches (10)
Treatment name(s)

(Zoloft)
Perceived effectiveness
for depressed mood (3 evaluations)
Side effects
dizziness migraine headaches 2 more
Total evaluations
3
Tried for
depressed mood (8)
Treatment name(s)

(Elavil)
Perceived effectiveness
for pain (2 evaluations)
Side effects
crying easily lethargy 3 more
Total evaluations
3
Tried for
pain (5) anxious mood (1)
1 more
Treatment name(s)

(Klonopin)
Perceived effectiveness
for anxious mood (3 evaluations)
Side effects
drowsiness
Total evaluations
5
Tried for
anxious mood (5) cluster headaches (1)
  • Major
  • Moderate
  • Slight
  • None
  • Can't tell
  • Severe
  • Moderate
  • Mild
  • None

Data from patients with cluster headaches, who reported starting treatments within the last 5 years.
Last updated:

Who has cluster headaches on PatientsLikeMe?


Age
Age Proportion # of patients
<20 5
20s 91
30s 257
40s 409
50s 296
60s 124
70+ 21
Age at first symptom
Age at first symptom Proportion # of patients
0-19 years 199
20-29 years 181
30-39 years 102
40-49 years 81
50-59 years 23
60-69 years 1
70+ years 1

Distribution of sex

Sex
Sex Proportion # of patients
Male 376
Female 835

Diagnosis status
Diagnosis status Proportion # of patients
Diagnosed 621
Not Diagnosed 100

These charts show data from cluster headaches patients who have completed their condition history
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