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Revista Dor

Print version ISSN 1806-0013

Abstract

SILVA JUNIOR, Ariovaldo Alberto da et al. Frequency of primary headaches in the community and in specialized care centers. Rev. dor [online]. 2013, vol.14, n.2, pp.84-87. ISSN 1806-0013.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1806-00132013000200002.

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: The comparison of headache features in general population and in tertiary care centers may explain factors associated to the search for medical assistance and the obstacles to such assistance. This study aimed at comparing demographic findings and the frequency of migraine and tension headache (THA) in general population and in a specialized care center. METHOD: All inhabitants of a small village were interviewed about the presence of headache. In one randomly selected region, people who answered positively were evaluated by a team of neurologists specialized in headache. They have also evaluated a number of patients consecutively treated by a specialized center. Diagnoses have followed International Headaches Classification criteria (2004). RESULTS: Participated in this study 1605 inhabitants of the whole village and 258 inhabitants of the region selected as sample. From these, 76 people reporting headache went through a neurological evaluation, as well as 289 patients of the specialized center. THA was the most common headache among general population (77.6%), followed by migraine (61.8%) with diagnostic overlapping in a good percentage of cases. In the outpatient setting the vast majority of patients had migraine (79.8%), while only 20.4% had THA, being the diagnostic association far less common. CONCLUSION: THA is more common in the community and migraine prevails in specialized centers. Understanding the contrasts of both primary headaches within these two scenarios may help the planning of preventive actions and the use of health care resources.

Keywords : General population; Migraine; Studies in specialized centers; Tension headache.

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