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Headaches for years, normal CT scan. TUMOUR?

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I've been having headaches for 8 years. They get worse more often than better. I got a ct scan but I doesn't show anything. I'm wondering if I might have a tumor or something else that I need to get checked out immediately.

Category: Family Physician-GP

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Category: HIV- AIDS Specialist
 21 Doctors Online

Thank you for your query at
I understand your concern.
From your history, it sounds more like a vascular migraine, which is chronic and keeps recurring with varying intensity.
Since the CT is normal, there is no chance of a tumor, hence you should not worry. A CT would have definitely showed tumor if there was any.
Kindly let me know what medicines you have tried till now. That will help me assessing the severity better.

Patient replied :

Excedrin migraine, bayer headache, advil, brupropion, advil migraine (but that didn't work) i think that's it.

In most cases, migraine is a recurring issue, and there are certain triggers in everyone.
In some people, coffee triggers migraine, while in others, it could be hunger or lack of sleep.
So, the only way to manage such migraine attacks is to know the trigger in your case and take medicines like Naproxen for some time.
Though migraines can change in nature and character, we need to investigate and exclude other causes. The most important test would be do a brain scan, preferably an MRI with MR venogram of brain. In addition, vitamin B12 and D deficiency should also be excluded. Since CT has been done, you can go for MR venogram. This will give more idea on how severe is the vascular disease.
Hope this was helpful,
Feel free to discuss further.

Patient replied :

I thought that having an MRI might be the next thing for me.

Yes, MRI and MR venogram are more specific for assessing vascular disorders.
CT is not that helpful in such cases.
Sometimes vitamin deficiency like B12 can also cause migraine, hence I asked you to get B12 and vitamin D levels evaluated too.
Kindly get back to me with the reports, we can get it assessed by the neurologist in our panel.

Patient replied :

I take b12 vitamins every day. It might be awhile before I get a MRI I need to get new insurance still that will cover it.

There is no urgency to get the MRI.
You can get it done as per your convenience.
I will keep this consult open, you can get back to us anytime.
Also, I will advise Tab. Naproxen SOS for the relief from headache.
Dr. Jay

Dr. Jaydeep Tripathy
Category: HIV- AIDS Specialist
MBBS from Sri Ramachandra University in December 2011
M.Med (Family Medicine) - TNMGR University, Chennai
MBA-MPH in Public Health in March 2016, SRM University
Finished AFIH in March 2016, SRM University
MRCP ( UK ), Internal Medicine, Royal College of Physicians, June 2016
Fellowship in Diabetology from Martin Luther University in January 2017

Currently Resident Physician, in MD Radiodiagnosis - Kamakshi Memorial Hospital, Chennai
Dr. Jaydeep Tripathy and 4 other Medical Specialists are ready to help you

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