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Keywords:

  • Headache;
  • migraine;
  • random sample

Two hundred persons, randomly chosen out of 3,067 who had answered a headache questionnaire modified from Waters, were summoned to an interview and an examination performed by a neurologist. The aim was to obtain prevalence readings for different types of headaches in an unselected population. Simple blood studies and plain skull and cervical spine radiography were performed. The occurrence of headache was 77%, and the prevalence of migraine 9% in men and 28% in women. There was a higher prevalence of headache in women, accounted for solely by their higher frequency of vascular headaches, while the figure for tension headache was 35% for both sexes. Demographic factors did not influence the distribution of the headache types, except for a concentration of vascular headaches in women working in service occupations. A positive family history of migraine was reported significantly more often by persons with migraine than by others. The physical neurological examination, and the laboratory and X-ray investigations performed generally did not contribute to the diagnosis of the headache.