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I've written many threads here and elsewhere dealing with the topic of constant head pressure. I have had constant head pressure (sides especially, often the back, but also sometimes the front above my eyes) for six years straight. I have had no testing beyond basic blood tests which found nothing. I cannot determine any likely cause. No insurance, no tests.

So there's been many posters offering up ideas through the years. Some ideas have been as serious as debilitating autoimmune conditions, malformations, and other unpleasant things. But to be honest I am done with such speculation, as it accomplishes nothing, for me at least. The point of this thread is twofold: to explore benign causes for the problem; secondly, to find anyone who has found relief from this symptom.

The next part of this post could be considered a "pity party" by some and therefore those who don't like complaining should not read it.

The essential problem for me is that this health problem has put my life on hold in several ways. Imagine this: [B]six years [/B]of having your life on hold, at 28. Having lifelong ADD and mild learning issues to begin with, now I have had to contend with a health issue that causes problems concentrating, maintaining focus, processing information, because of the intense brain fog. The pressure CAUSES my brain fog, here's how I know: anytime my pressure is reduced or even absent (typically only 15-30 minutes of such relief in any given day), my concentrative abilities come back.

I'm so sick of the complexity of this problem, and the inability to make any progress with it, at all. SO sick of it, I would tear down walls with my bare hands if such a thing could be socially admissible. I don't even enjoy doing anything anymore because of it.

Now all i get when I tell people this stuff is to deal with it, grow up, or that I just complain too much. But it was not my choice to have ADD, not my choice to have learning issues, not my choice to have this mystery health problem. Is it complaining, or just my reality. Is it a coward's way out to say "my life is on hold" due to some health problem no one can detect but me. We can also explore these issues here, if you like, but only in a respectful way.

So, to start things off, has anyone had head pressure and found relief?
dear benit

I have come across a possible answer to your constant head pressure.here it is my friend:

First of all I am not a dr. or any other type of health professional...I just wanted to make that point clear to you and anyone else who comes across this post.Thank you.

Okay...a very likely cause of your chronic head presure could be an inflammation of the blood vessels in your head.This is a diagnosis a neurologist has given someone else with the same symptoms as you have stated you are having and mainly the head pressure for 6 years.This inflammation takes a long time to resolve,but it will resolve with proper medications that a dr. has to prescribe(preferably a neurologist,but I'm sure an educated family practice dr. could possibly know which medications to prescribe).

Inflammation of the blood vessels in your head is not life threatening and not a frightening health diagnosis my friend.It is something that can be treated.The patient who had the constant head pressure for years did get much needed relief from the medications the neurologist prescribed.The head pressure started easing up more and more 'til the patient was finally free of it.

It didn't say which test/s showed the inflamed blood vessels.The neurologist was 100% accurate with the dx of that patient.

I'm hoping you don't take this information lightly,but instead use it to get the help you need.Don't think buying OTC motrin or any other self help medicine is going to do the trick.You need to get a dr. to listen to you and maybe do a trial of medications to see if your head pressure is stemming from inflammation.I would give it some serious thought.

As far as the sinus theory goes...you said you don't really have any sinus issues like a stuffy or runny nose or any congestion so the fact that your teeth hurt sometimes too could just be secondary to the head pressure.;)

Scout:angel:
[QUOTE=scout316;4233246]
Okay...a very likely cause of your chronic head presure could be an inflammation of the blood vessels in your head.This is a diagnosis a neurologist has given someone else with the same symptoms as you have stated you are having and mainly the head pressure for 6 years.This inflammation takes a long time to resolve,but it will resolve with proper medications that a dr. has to prescribe(preferably a neurologist,but I'm sure an educated family practice dr. could possibly know which medications to prescribe).

Inflammation of the blood vessels in your head is not life threatening and not a frightening health diagnosis my friend.It is something that can be treated.The patient who had the constant head pressure for years did get much needed relief from the medications the neurologist prescribed.The head pressure started easing up more and more 'til the patient was finally free of it.

It didn't say which test/s showed the inflamed blood vessels.The neurologist was 100% accurate with the dx of that patient.

I'm hoping you don't take this information lightly,but instead use it to get the help you need.Don't think buying OTC motrin or any other self help medicine is going to do the trick.You need to get a dr. to listen to you and maybe do a trial of medications to see if your head pressure is stemming from inflammation.I would give it some serious thought.
[/QUOTE]

I really appreciate this, scout. Yes this was another idea I've seen mentioned from time to time. Just curious, though, is this patient someone you know in real life, or someone you corresponded with online?

I wonder if one of the tests used to diagnose this person's inflamed blood vessels was a SED Rate test. The first time I went in to the doctor with head pressure, well the first thing he thought was maybe it's my sinuses, and then gave me Afrin nasal spray for that. The second thing was he prescribed a SED rate test, which turned out normal. I have looked at the things that abnormal SED rate can diagnose, chief among them was Giant Cell Arteritis, or inflamed blood vessels in the head...

[QUOTE=scout316;4233246]
As far as the sinus theory goes...you said you don't really have any sinus issues like a stuffy or runny nose or any congestion so the fact that your teeth hurt sometimes too could just be secondary to the head pressure.;)
[/QUOTE]

Just in case maybe it is my sinuses, though, I think I'm going to try a three-day trial of Afrin nasal spray... more than three days and you can get rebound congestion. I've never used it three days in a row before, just here and there when the pressure got really bad. It did cause drainage but no relief that I remember.

I don't want to waste time any more, I really *want* to test the sinus theory to the extent that I can be convinced whether it plays a role, or not. Maybe the next time I see the doc we could try antibiotics, or maybe I'll try some at-home remedies for nasal irrigation.
I so agree with you on first trying to see if the head pressure is related to the sinuses.The sinuses can be inflamed just as blood vessels can be.

The person who was relieved of their head pressure was someone online I came across on an old thread on a different site.Last night I stayed up for a long time reading that thread and it got off track with people just posting about migraines and so many other things.So there wasn't anything else from the original poster.After researching more I found that an MRI can show inflamed blood vessels in the head.What I was curious about was which medications that dr. prescribed for her.I bet it was steroids and or anti-inflammation meds...maybe anti-biotics also.Do you think Biaxin would help you?I know the head pressure I had at that time was the worst.

What I did come across also was a thread where the posters talked about how "light exercise" would relieve their head pressure,but not for long...that is just like you said it is for you.Most of them agreed that the head pressure just happened suddenly and then stayed with them.

I was so happy to read that your dr. at least did some tests related to your head pressure.

Hope the nasal spray helps you out and if it does that's a step to finding out the root of your health problems.Hey I just remembered something....I read this a very long time ago...it was about how some people who get chronic headaches have to have anti-biotics(low doses) every so often,because they seem to run mild infections...I wonder if you fit in that category...interesting I think and worth considering.

Scout
[QUOTE=scout316;4235469]Hi Bill

Oh I think you have just as much intelligence as the next person....you are just going through a difficult health situation.Sometimes when we spend so much time on looking for answers to our medical concerns we get overwhelmed and start to analyze ourselves way too much(I am guilty of that myself....).

Also even if we don't want to acknowledge it we tend to run on a constant,low anxiety level,because of our health issues.I think this board helps a lot,because talking about our health concerns gives us somewhat of an outlet...to be able to talk to people who hopefully won't judge us and be critical of us....just to listen & offer help even if it's just emotional strength.

So you need not be so critical of yourself Bill...you have a vast amount of knowledge and you are a great help to others...

I'm kind of feeling down today(think I had some fluid retention,but it's resolved now...ugh...a bad day,but a better evening for me and I am thankful for that.

Hope youh have a good night~talk again soon~

Scout[/QUOTE]

I can always rely on you for some kind words Scout... hope you feel better yourself.

I've been doing some thinking on another theory, similar to your most recent idea (inflamed blood vessels).. basically the idea is that for some reason, my blood vessels react in a very exaggerated way to any increases in blood pressure. This would seem to not make sense given that I've always had low-normal blood pressure, but, I saw someone elsewhere on the Net say that they had the constant head pressure and low blood pressure like me... and yet, blood pressure drugs relieved their problem!

Some further support for my theory:

It was strong stimulant drugs that set off my head pressure to begin with (I haven't used those in years, of course.) But nowadays, anytime I have a concentrated amount of caffeine, say a strong double espresso, the pressure gets really bad. On the flip side, eating and exercise can relieve my pressure for a short period of time.. I've always wondered why.. now I think it could be that when you eat, blood flows away from the head and toward the stomach, theoretically reducing blood pressure in my head. I don't know what effect exercise has, exactly, but I've often heard it can reduce blood pressure.

The theory is not perfect and obviously I have a lot of research to do yet, but I think there might be something to it. Now I'm wondering if there's any herbs or supplements that can safely reduce blood pressure, just to test the idea. Interestingly, last time I saw my psychiatrist, he recommended trying Intuniv, which has the double effect of treating ADD and also lowering blood pressure. He said it could conceivably relieve my head pressure.

Right now I'm just wondering what, apart from exercise, I can try on my own to test the idea...
I have experienced this. It is muscle tension that usually starts in my shoulders, up my neck, up my head. Sometimes it is so intense it feels like my head is gonna pop off. If you can't get medications do to lack of insurance and funds, try stretching exercises (find them on the internet), try yoga, muscles rub creams, and massage. Of course this is temporary until you find the source of your tension....stress, physical exurtion, and in my case, fibromyalgia.
[QUOTE=BarbieLynn;4235660]I have experienced this. It is muscle tension that usually starts in my shoulders, up my neck, up my head. Sometimes it is so intense it feels like my head is gonna pop off. If you can't get medications do to lack of insurance and funds, try stretching exercises (find them on the internet), try yoga, muscles rub creams, and massage. Of course this is temporary until you find the source of your tension....stress, physical exurtion, and in my case, fibromyalgia.[/QUOTE]

Thanks for your reply BarbieLynn. That's interesting fibromyalgia caused tension headaches for you. I've looked at that disorder and it seems the vast majority of the time it seems to cause physical pain, which doesn't seem to fit in my case. Mine is just pressure that annoys the heck out of me.
This thing is driving me crazy again, so I felt I'd post, just in case anyone else--with head pressure--comes across this thread.

I think this symptom of constant head pressure is not yet known enough, and especially, it's not taken seriously. Everyone I talk to about it says I'm imagining it or it's all in my head. Countless times I've talked to people in discussion boards who brought the complaint to their doctor, and they're turned away with either "i don't know" or "it's just anxiety." Unacceptable!

Something needs to be done. I think there should be a website created that deals only, and [B]exclusively[/B], with this symptom of head/neck pressure. I would call it "Head Pressure Resource." This way we wouldn't have just TWO or THREE people in a forum like this willing to bother with posting, but perhaps hundreds. However I do not have the know-how to create such a website.

Back to the problem, it's really bothering me. I keep massaging my head/neck area but it's not doing anything, I've been at that for a week. No relief from sinus/nasal sprays, either.

I think maybe the next step is just taking a shot in the dark and trying some medication. I hate to add a new medication to the mix--I already take Paxil--both because of side effects and secondly due to vanity (drugs are not good for your body...) But I'm considering Tenex, or Guanfacine. My psychiatrist wants me to try it, because he thinks the blood pressure lowering-quality might reduce the head pressure. So I guess I could [B]try [/B]it... only thing is, and I can find NO information on this on the internet, is the generic type (Guanfacine) reasonably priced for someone without insurance?

And lastly, I need someone to give me a kick of motivation so I'll actually make the call and ask my shrink to fill the script... [B]what else can I do?[/B] If I had insurance, I'd go for a CT scan, MRI, thorough blood testing, X-rays, and all that. But my options are far too restricted.

Let's have someone keep this thread alive,
Bill Z.
Hi Benit,
Me again. I meant to ask if you have a salty taste in your mouth? I have it really badly at the moment. I am drinking heaps but it doesn't seem to help. I have had this problem before, when my head throbbed alot. Does yours throb?
Gjoy
[QUOTE=gjoy;4241682]Hi Benit,
Me again. I meant to ask if you have a salty taste in your mouth? I have it really badly at the moment. I am drinking heaps but it doesn't seem to help. I have had this problem before, when my head throbbed alot. Does yours throb?
Gjoy[/QUOTE]

Dear gjoy,

I don't know that I would always call the taste salty, but yes I do sometimes get an odd taste in my mouth along with unquenchable thirst. Scout316 has noticed that my albumin levels are always a little high on my blood tests, and told me that could mean mild dehydration. It is interesting to note, however, that usually I only get the bad taste/excess thirst when my head pressure is really bad.

My head does not often throb, or at least I would not describe it like that. Sometimes however when the pressure in my head is really bad, it feels as if something inside could burst, however this is not usually accompanied by pain.

So if you describe your odd sensations in your head as more about pain and throbbing, I would describe mine as more about pressure and "cloggage." I tend to imagine the sensation as perhaps clogged blood vessels, or something, even though I don't know if that's the problem.

Do you have head pressure 24/7? Any pressure in your neck or back? Any activity that relieves it? Is it better when standing or lying down?

You really should post more often. There is strength in numbers when it comes to medical mysteries.
Hi Benit,

Thanks for your reply. I know we have lots of similarities. I also have the high albumin. In my last blood test the only other unusual thing was low calcium (corr).

I always have a degree of head pressure. I used to call it an unwell feeling but now I recognise it as that. I do not have much pain. In fact that is not working well anywhere. When the osteopath says where you sore I say I don't do sore. I suppose I am lucky in that respect. Today I had some corns taken off my feet. The podiatrist said are they very sore. I said not at all. She said they are usually very painful. I could feel them when I walked but it wasn't painful, maybe a little uncomfortable. I am more throbbing and tingling. It is not prickly like pins and needles but sort of like that. The tingling is often at the moment and can go all over.

I know that some of the throbbing in my head is a mastoid infection. I have had two scans showing fluid in the mastoid air cells. I have had 8 courses of antibiotics for that and many of my symptoms improved including the throbbing, but now I am off the antibiotics afew things have got worse. I am so over it all I don't want to go back to the doctor while I can still get by.The antibiotics were making me nauseous. I do have am appointment next week.

Light and sound makes things worse so I avoid them and use air plugs and a hat when I can't and sunnies sometimes. It changes so often that the sunnies I only use rarely as they can make my eyes ache.

It is worse lying down. I am rubbing my neck now as the the light from the computer is bothering me again. I sometimes get pain in my lower back. It used to be a pattern, head throb, neck pain, lower back pain. I think I must have some sort of infection that is larger than just in the mastoid cells, but have so much trouble getting anyone to believe it is not just anxiety I am not sure how to pursue it. I suppose if I get really sick again they might have to look further, or at least concede it is the infection making me sick.

Do you have any of the changed sensation? I notice particularly that my face is always numb like the dentist needle half worn off.

The osteopathic manipulation did help for a short time with the some of the head pressure. I have also had it when I thought my head would explode. At that stage my legs wouldn't work.

Hope this is some help,

Gjoy
Hi benit and scout,

I am better tonight with the computer than I have been and scout you are worse. Sorry you have been feeling low. I thought you may have been because we haven't heard your cheery voice for a while. I have been concerned about you.

I think with the time difference our messages are crossed so I will start with the first question.

My osteopath does manipulation like a chiropractor, not very gentle at all. Lucky I don't do sore, but he usually works on my neck and shoulders and also my back. I am sometimes dizzy when i stand but I head feels somewhat lighter.I feel like I can stand straighter without my head pulling me down. It is not a major difference but quite a pleasant distraction, and he is good to chat to.

Scout what do the doctors say about your seizures, surely that should be followed up? How horrible for you.

I started off talking about the csf leaks. My ear has been oozing for many weeks. The doctor said it is caused by a blocked eustachian tube but I have all this salty stuff draining into my mouth. When I searched for salty taste I came up with the csf leak. I have considered this before but because I have so much trouble lying down I thought it can't be. The oozing ear can also be a csf leak so I asked an online doctor about it. The thing with the glucose is there is only glucose in csf and blood no other fluids so if it has glucose it must be csf. Then I read it is not entirely reliable. The strips seem expensive, I looked them up too. I will pursue this line but maybe not immediately. There are other things going on at the moment and the timing for me is not right.

I do not have chiari, Scout but I read the connection and was thinking about you. You realise I have seen all the doctors you need and got nowhere. What we need is a doctor that will seriously look at the whole person and try to work out what is happening. what is the point of the gastro saying what are you gastric symptoms? Nausea and I have lost weight. That is only a tenth of my probs.Then he passes me off to the psych because he can't find a prob. It is like the mechanic dealing with only one part of the car and ignoring the rest. i know your frustration. but the brain is the manager of the whole body and if something is wrong there it effects all of you.

I found about the oily sheen in the urine. They said it was quite normal, though I have never noticed it and even had a name for it, so no need to worry benit, but an interesting observation.

I was told to keep a diary of my symptoms. I think that is a good idea for everyone as when it is written down it is fact. I will have to go back to that.

Keep positive. I feel better times are coming,

Gjoy
Hi Benit
There is not really that much relief from the manipulations. Maybe my neck feels better. I was quite a bit better after the antibiotics for the mastoid infection. I have been off them two weeks and my head has gone backwards a lot. At night it thumps and it wasn't doing that for a while. It is like there is a jet engine in my head sometimes the noise, which I suppose is tinnitus, is so loud. Six months ago my ear just felt odd. I didn't have any extra noise at all, although my hearing was extra sensitive.

I have heard lots of people having success with chiropractors. My brother has relief from problem backs from one.My son has problems with his neck working on a computer all day and the chiropractor helps him a great deal to. It is good you have found one well recommended. I think osteopaths are slightly different in that they can recommend exercise as well. Here they both do the same amount of study. I think it is 4 or 5 years so they must know a fair bit. Physios also can be good. You just have to find a good one of whatever you choose.

I am going to get the doctor to refer me to another ear, nose and throat specialist and get myself sorted. I am thinking if I don't have the mastoid infection causing irritation I will loose all my silly symptoms, including the head pressure. I don't want to feel like this much longer either. When I sort me I may have some suggestions that will help you.

I'm sorry the pillows didn't help. It is not working that well for me at the moment but lying down is still worse. I just wait until I am quite tired and usually go to sleep quickly. I have been waking a bit but am able to stay in bed. At one stage I was up for hours in the night because bed was so uncomfortable.

I give the chiro a go. It might just be your magic fix.

Good luck

Gjoy
Hi Benit,

I did have refief from the brain fog that goes with this pressure after I was on antibiotics for 8 courses. a few times I ws able to forget I was sick. and I felt the best I had in years. Now however I in a super fog because I have been off the antibiotics for a few weeks. I am waiting to hear from a doctor who promised to get me in to see an infections specialist a week ago.

Did you have the brain fog and head pressure before you went on your current medication? I take no meds so at least I can discount that.

Sorry I can't help any more than that. Did you try the chiro? It works really well for some people, maybe you are one.

Gjoy
Dear gjoy,

How is it you can't read or watch a movie? What's wrong with your eyes?

The other question I had is.. do you have any kind of IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) ??

I have terrible, severe IBS-C. I suspect there may be a strong connection between the head pressure and my gut problems. The reason being is eating helps relieve the pressure for up to an hour sometimes, and bowel movements also seem to have a direct effect on the pressure, usually making it worse but sometimes making it better for about an hour.

I think I'm going to try Peppermint Oil to see if it does anything for the spasming/bloating in my gut. Maybe if I can relieve the spasming and bloating down there, the head pressure could get better temporarily? Well, that's one idea.
Hi Bill,

I was given the antibiotics for a mastoid infection. I kept complaining about the pain that was in my head on the right side behind my ear. On the MRI it showed fluid in the mastoid. Eventually they decided I should start on antibiotics to see if it helped, then my ear started oozing and smelling. The GP would look at my ear and say it is very red you had better have another course of antibiotics. I had four courses before they got the result of the ear swab which showed the best antibiotic to use, then 4 courses on that. The doctor said my ear looked better and stopped the antibiotics. The ENT specialists have said I would be deaf if I had a mastoid problem, but I have the opposite problem. So who knows what infection they treated but it worked.

I saw the GP today for the name of a infectious disease specialist. I asked how long should I wait to see them? He said it wasn't urgent as I had already been sick 8 or 9 months. I said it may not be urgent to you but it is to me. He just doesn't get it I think. When I rang for the appointment they asked was it urgent and I said it is to me. They gave me an appointment later this week. I can't believe my luck. Hope he is someone with an open mind and a lot of knowledge.

Maybe IBS is being misdiagnosed all over the place if you get your info from others experience. I have trouble with the muscles more when going to the toilet, both urinating and defecating, and have to go back several times sometimes before I have finished. This problem improved on the antibiotics also. Have you had antibiotics for anything since you have had the head pressure?

How about you test the pain sensation by sitting on your legs for a while and you should get pins and needles which normally are quite prickly and uncomfortable? It was suggested to me to try putting my hand in a bucket of ice. I may try that if I have the opportunity.I reckon it would be a good competition to have with my sons.

I am so uncomfortable in bed. I get this pain in my lower back and hip. I know it comes from my head throbbing. It happens in the day as well but more so at night, if there is a lot of noise like my husband snoring. Strange isn't it.Do you have that lower back pain?

When I see this doc I am going to stress the head pressure and see what the response is. Will keep you posted,

Gjoy
I feel for you!!!! I dealt with head pressure for 10 years. I came to the conclusion that the medical community does not have the information when dealing with subtle energetics and the nervous system....if you are experiencing what I did....and how do we know that, we don't. ....What I learned is that a Doctor will not go into this territory with you because they can not measure it or fix it. Of course, I'm assuming you have had all of the traditional tests and they have come back normal. I have spoken to many healers and shamans over the past 10 years who have had the same experience. One of them in Hawaii still does. At the end of the day it does come down to a personal inquiry and a spiritual journey. This is where things get a bit quirky when we start telling each other what the spiritual path is....NO ONE KNOWS!!!! What we do know is that you have been given the opportunity to journey with this experience in your head....and you are at choice of how you experience and who you choose to assist you. The ADD phenomena is another one from the nervous system.... Knock Knock... you have your clues. The only thing I can offer you is hope that one day you will be free of this. I now have a clear thinking mind and feelings of deep love for myself and humanity. I have uncovered a lot of gifts that people refer to as 'special.' They are not paranormal they are normal and innate to the human system. It's just that there are not enough people out there that really understand what is going on...and a lot of the ones that advertise that they do know, are usually fakes. It can be a lonely journey or a journey where you feel you are special. You are neither...we are all in the process of evolution. There are many many many others out there like you. One's that have similar symptoms and ones that have uncovered or beginning to uncover their innate self. Their natural self. It is not always comfortable...when you start to really understand the guidance and grace behind it you will be able to relax more into it. It becomes a joyous adventure. If you are a true sensitive you will sense where this note is coming from....and hopefully it will give you some encouragement. Some therapies I found useful: cranial sacral work, massage, acupuncture, no sugar, no caffeine, meditation, yoga, walking, dance. ...martial arts....anything that gets you into your body in the moment...it can be a sport but preferably not one that you compete. Good love making with someone you really care about is an absolute help. Take care my friend and know that there are many people out there on the same path. :)





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