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When do you need emergency help for a migraine?

ANSWER

If you've had a lot of migraines, you probably just try to tough it out when one strikes. Not all migraines are the same, though. If yours doesn't let up with treatment, you may need emergency help. Go to the ER or see a doctor if you feel like this is the worst headache you've ever had. Get help if it came on suddenly, or if you also have:

  • High fever
  • Weakness
  • Numbness
  • Trouble seeing
  • Trouble speaking
  • Confusion
  • Fainting
  • Stiff neck
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting

SOURCES:

Mayo Clinic: "Migraines: Simple steps to head off the pain," "Headache: When to see a doctor."

Migraine Research Foundation: "Migraine Triggers."

American Migraine Foundation: "Tips for Avoiding Summer Migraines and Headaches," "When to Go to the Emergency Room for a Headache or Migraine."

National Headache Foundation: "Migraine."

American Family Physician: "Migraine Headaches: How to Deal with the Pain."

International Association for Medical Assistance to Travelers: "What You Need To Know About Travelling With Medications."

Reviewed by Lawrence C. Newman on January 19, 2018

SOURCES:

Mayo Clinic: "Migraines: Simple steps to head off the pain," "Headache: When to see a doctor."

Migraine Research Foundation: "Migraine Triggers."

American Migraine Foundation: "Tips for Avoiding Summer Migraines and Headaches," "When to Go to the Emergency Room for a Headache or Migraine."

National Headache Foundation: "Migraine."

American Family Physician: "Migraine Headaches: How to Deal with the Pain."

International Association for Medical Assistance to Travelers: "What You Need To Know About Travelling With Medications."

Reviewed by Lawrence C. Newman on January 19, 2018

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Is it common to get a headache if you have a stroke?

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THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

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