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Spike and Wave Headache
D. Sreedhar, Cephalalgia, May 2000
Posted Feb 2001

Chronic headache of over 3 months duration is a common disorder for which advice from a neurologist is invariably sought. In 500 cases of chronic headache (seen between February 1998 to April 2000), a significant number of cases (approximately 35%) had an epileptic background. Headache improved in all of these cases using antiepileptic drugs (AED) only. Therefore, it is desirable to keep in mind the epileptic background of chronic headache cases and treat appropriately (with AED). This type of headache is not included in the international classification. This group formed a significant percentage (35%) in our study. The name “spike and wave headache” denotes electrophysiological evidence supported by history without seizures being precipitated clinically and headache responding only to AED.