Lauren, a 48 year old female presented to our office with a 2 year history of a “continuous headache”. She had no prior history and could not recall any injuries she had sustained in the past. Her general practitioner had sent her to a neurologist who put her on medication. As long as she took her medication, The medication alleviated her symptoms as long as she was taking it. However, Lauren noted that after several months of being on one medication, it would seem to lose its effectiveness. She would go back and the doctor would put her on another medication, which would also help for a period of time. Some medications were more helpful than others, but having to change periodically became the norm. A friend told her to come to our office to be evaluated.
Examination revealed no significant spinal degeneration, postural alterations, muscle imbalances, or active trigger points. It did however reveal significantly restricted motion in the joints of her upper neck. This pattern of dysfunction can cause headache pain through painful stimulation of the joints of the neck or by irritation of the spinal nerves. Except for the chronic nature of this condition, this woman’s case was relatively uncomplicated. Because of this fact, we informed her that we expected good results fairly quickly. A progress examination at 4 weeks revealed headache pain to be completely resolved without the use of medication. Follow up continued for a period of time to promote stabilization and prevent recurrence.