Sphenopalatine Ganglion Neuralgia and Cluster Headache: Comparisons, Contrasts, and Treatment




Whether spheoplatatine ganglion neuralgia and cluster headache are two distinct entities or are one and the same disease has not been decided. We reviewed records of patients with these diagnoses at the Mayo Clinic.

Sphenopalatine ganglion neuralgia and cluster headache are distinct entities because in sphenopalatine ganglion neuralgia (1) the pain is different, (2) duration of symptoms is longer, (3) an inflamed nasal mucosa is present on the involved side, (4) extended relief is obtained by cauterization of the sphenopalatine ganglion, and (5) the disorder is more frequent in women, in contrast to the male predominance in cluster headache. We recommend cauterization of the sphenopalatine ganglion in patients with sphenopalatine ganglion neuralgia.