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Articles - Headaches
Headache Questionnaire
Diagnosis Treatment
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FAQs
Cosmetic Surgery Center Center Ear Nose and Throat Center Headache Treatment Center Meet Dr. Smith

Here are some common questions asked by patients who suffer from migraine-like headaches.

 

Q: What is the difference between a migraine and a migraine imposter?

 

A: True migraine sufferers tend to have visual cues, or auras that occur between 10 and 30 minutes before the onset of severe headache pain. They can see flashing lights, have blind spots, or lose vision for a short time. They may also have other symptoms that come with severe headache pain, like nausea and vomiting. While many theories exist for the cause of migraines, the most commonly accepted is the blood flow theory, which focuses on blood vessel activity in the brain.
 
A migraine imposter may have the same level of pain, accompanied by nausea and vomiting, but can have other causes, such as a bone spur of the septum that contacts nasal turbinates, and triggers pain.

 

Q: Why do more women suffer from migraines than men?


A: The National Women’s Health Information Center theorizes that women are more prone to migraine headaches because they often have more job, family, and social commitments. Hormones can also be a trigger for migraines, which is often referred to as “menstrual migraines,” even though women suffer from migraines at times not connected with their menstrual cycle.
Source: National Women’s Health Information Center. www.4woman.gov/faq/migraine.htm

 

Q: What causes a deviated septum?

 

A: The cause of a deviated septum is trauma of some sort. It can occur as early as birth, when the baby’s face is smashed during the delivery process. As children get involved in sports, they can have injury to their nose and a resulting deviated septum. Teens and adults can be involved in car accidents, contact sports, or abusive relationships. Professional athletes are constantly exposed to potential nose trauma, which misdiagnosed can lead to shortened careers and millions of dollars lost from contracts.

 

Q: What exactly is a septoplasty? Do I have to go into the hospital? How long does it take to recover?

 

A: This surgical procedure involves removing the deviated portion of the septum that is making contact with very sensitive structures in the nose, called turbinates. These turbinates are vascular structures that are innervated by the trigeminal nerve. They swell in response to colds, flu, and hormonal changes such as menstrual cycles. Once the contact point is removed, the pain goes away.

Septoplasty is performed in an out-patient setting, and is covered by insurance. The recovery can be in as little as two days. Patients who suffer headaches on the day of surgery are amazed to find relief upon awakening in the recovery room.

 

Q: How successful is septoplasty in eliminating, or significantly reducing severe headache pain?

 

A: Dr. Smith has analyzed the outcomes of patients in his own practice and found that he provided relief to 90% of patients–40% cured, and 50% that reported less frequent and/or less severe headaches. The success rate in his practice is correlated to patients identified as having a deviated septum.

 
 

1701 South Shepherd Drive, Suite D, Houston, Texas 77019 • Phone: 713-795-0600 • Toll Free: 855-609-8740 • Fax: 713-795-0862
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