What are Cluster Headaches?

pain management clinic Jacksonville flCluster headaches are a very rare headache disorder that is extremely painful and can significantly impact the sufferer’s day to day life. They are called cluster headaches because you will get them in clusters that last weeks or even months at a time. It is possible for the condition to go into remission for quite a long time – months or years, before returning. The headaches start with severe pain centered over one eye, in five to ten minute the pain will peak and can last for a few hours before going away.

Symptoms of Cluster Headaches

Aside from the severe pain above your eye, you may also experience discomfort around your temple. Additionally, you may also feel swelling in your eyes, nasal congestion, and tearing red eyes. You may also have symptoms such as eyelid drooping, pupil constriction, and facial sweating.

Unclear Cause

There is a possibility that the headaches are related to abrupt releases of serotonin and histamine in your brain, or problems within the hypothalamus, but there is no clear cause for cluster headaches. Some triggers for cluster headaches can include smoking, drinking alcohol, high altitudes, heat, bright lights, physical exertion, and foods high in nitrites like bacon.


While this disorder is incredibly rare, there are treatments available. Inhaled oxygen, triptans like Imitrex, and short-term steroids are sometimes used to treat cluster headaches. Pain medications do not typically work for this type of headache, even strong narcotics.

The doctors at Florida Coast Pain are dedicated to diagnosing and treating your chronic pain. Contact our pain management clinic in Jacksonville, FL, today at 904.449.7246 or book your appointment online.