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How can I tell if my headache is related to a sinus infection?

While headaches can certainly be caused by sinusitis, this is not the only cause of headaches. There are many types of headaches, including migraines, tension headaches, sinus headaches, and cluster headaches. Headache can also be caused by more serious diseases such as bleeding in the brain or brain cancer, although these causes are far less commonly the cause of headaches. Headaches can be caused by migraines, which are a form of headache in which people are often sensitive to light or sound and may even have nausea or vomiting. Tension headaches are also very common causes of headache. Patients often complain that the base of their skull and their neck hurt. Cluster headaches occur more commonly in men than women and are characterized by a very intense but very short duration of symptoms often occurring over one side of the head or in one eye; they can be accompanied by tearing of eye or nasal stuffiness. (MD Consult - "Headaches Differential Diagnosis", "Cluster Headaches", "Migraines": www.mdconsult.com)

Dr. David C. Fiore, MD
Family Practitioner

Not all headaches are sinusitis. In addition to sinus causes, there are several other causes of headaches, including migraines, tension headaches, and cluster headaches. Also, sinusitis doesn't necessarily cause headaches, but they are common due to the pressure effects that come along with sinusitis.

If you have a headache as a part of sinus infection you will also have symptoms of congestion, nasal discharge, both of which are common with sinusitis. The location of the headaches in the front of the head. The headache should resolve with treatment of the sinus infection.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.