2. Approach to the Patient with Headache

  1. Matthew S. Robbins MD,
  2. Brian M. Grosberg MD and
  3. Richard B. Lipton MD
  1. Brian M. Grosberg,
  2. Benjamin W. Friedman and
  3. Seymour Solomon

Published Online: 19 JUL 2013

DOI: 10.1002/9781118678961.ch2



How to Cite

Grosberg, B. M., Friedman, B. W. and Solomon, S. (2013) Approach to the Patient with Headache, in Headache (eds M. S. Robbins, B. M. Grosberg and R. B. Lipton), John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781118678961.ch2

Editor Information

  1. Montefi ore Headache Center, Saul R. Korey Department of Neurology, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, NY, USA

Author Information

  1. Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, NY, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 19 JUL 2013

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9780470654729

Online ISBN: 9781118678961



  • headache;
  • headache history;
  • primary headaches;
  • secondary headaches;
  • red flags;
  • general physical and neurological examinations;
  • headache diagnosis;
  • migraine;
  • tension-type headache;
  • cluster headache


Headache is one of the most common complaints presenting to primary care physicians and neurologists. Although the vast majority of headache syndromes are benign, clinicians are faced with the crucial task of differentiating benign headache disorders from potentially life-threatening conditions. Given the broad range of disorders that present with headache, a logical and orderly approach is necessary to facilitate the prompt diagnosis and treatment of various kinds of head pain. This chapter reviews the key elements of the headache history, general physical and neurological examinations, approach to headache diagnosis, and treatment plan.