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Can General Anesthesia Cause Migraines

Can A Neck Injury Cause Headaches

What Is Anesthesia and The Difference Between General vs Spinal Anesthesia?

Headaches can have many causes, from eye strain to head injuries. Neck injuries are another common source of headaches. The types of headaches associated with the neck are slightly different from those originating in the head.

Headaches caused by neck injuries are called cervicogenic headaches. They can be caused by problems with the nerves, bones, or muscles in your neck. Many different neck issues can cause these headaches, ranging from mild issues to severe injuries.

Why Does My Husband Have Headaches After Surgery

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  • Why Does My Husband Have Headaches After Surgery?

Any time you have to witness your spouse go under anesthesia for surgery, it can be a scary feeling. However, it is always comforting to imagine that after the surgery is over, your husband will come out of the situation ready for recovery from whatever procedure has taken place. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for patients to wake after surgery to unusual side effects, especially headaches. Even though headaches may be temporary, it is still disconcerting to see your husband with these symptoms, and you will definitely have questions. Here are a few of the most common questions about headaches following a surgical procedure.

What Is An Epidural Blood Patch

Some of your own blood is injected into your back. The aim is that the blood seals the hole in the dura and stops the leak of fluid. Great care is taken to clean your arm and take blood in a fully clean manner. This reduces the risk of infection. Blood is carefully injected into your back by using an epidural needle, placed near to the hole in the dura.

The blood will clot and so seal the hole that has been made in the dura. As the fluid leak is stopped, the pressure around the brain will increase and the headache should improve.

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Is It Possible To Wake Up During Surgery

Very rarely, people may be aware of whats going on during surgery. Some experts estimate that about 1 out of every 1,000 people regain consciousness but remain unable to move, talk, or otherwise alert their doctor. Other sources report it being even more rare, as infrequent as 1 out of 15,000 or 1 out of 23,000.

When this happens, the person usually doesnt feel any pain. However, operative awareness can be very distressing and may cause long-term psychological problems, similar to post-traumatic stress disorder.

If you experience operative awareness under general anesthesia, you may find it beneficial to talk to a therapist or a counselor about your experience.

If you need surgery, you probably dont want to feel whats going on. Depending on the type of surgery, this can be accomplished in a variety of ways.

Your doctor will likely recommend general anesthesia if your procedure is going to:

  • take a long time
  • result in blood loss
  • affect your breathing

General anesthesia is essentially a medically induced coma. Your doctor administers medication to make you unconsciousness so that you wont move or feel any pain during the operation.

Other procedures can be done with:

  • local anesthetic, like when you get stitches in your hand
  • sedation, like when you get a colonoscopy
  • a regional anesthetic, like when you get an epidural to deliver a baby

What Causes The Headache

Local Anesthesia Side Effects Headache Chills Nausea Fever ...

Your brain and spinal cord are surrounded by fluid. The fluid is called the cerebrospinal fluid .

  • For an epidural, a needle is used to inject local anaesthetic just outside the membrane that surrounds the spinal cord . If the needle accidentally passes through the dura, a small hole is made. CSF can leak out through the hole.
  • When a spinal injection is given, a very fine needle is deliberately inserted through the dura. The hole made by a spinal needle is very small and no CSF usually leaks out. But sometimes the hole is big enough to cause some leakage of CSF.

If too much fluid leaks out through the hole in the dura, the pressure in the rest of the fluid around the brain is reduced. This causes a typical headache, which is called a post-dural puncture headache. If you sit up, the pressure around your brain is reduced even more. Therefore, sitting or standing often makes the headache worse. On the other hand, lying flat will often improve this type of headache.

Although the hole in the dura will usually seal over in a number of weeks, it is not usually a good idea to wait for this to happen. The brain is cushioned by the CSF around it. If the headache is left untreated, this cushioning effect is not present and bleeding into or around the brain may occasionally occur. A fit can also happen but this is rare. Therefore, it is very important to treat a post-dural puncture headache.

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What Are The Types Of Anesthesia And Their Side Effects

There are four main types of anesthesia used during medical procedures and surgery, and the potential risks vary with each. The types of anesthesia include the following:

General anesthesia. General anesthesia causes you to lose consciousness. This type of anesthesia, while very safe, is the type most likely to cause side effects. If youâre having general anesthesia, a physician anesthesiologist should monitor you during and after your procedure to address any side effects and watch for the possibility of more serious complications.

Side effects of general anesthesia can include:

Rarely, general anesthesia can cause more serious complications, including:

Monitored anesthesia care or IV sedation. For some procedures, you may receive medication that makes you sleepy and keeps you from feeling pain. There are different levels of sedation â some patients are drowsy, but they are awake and can talk others fall asleep and donât remember the procedure. Potential side effects of sedation, although there are fewer than with general anesthesia, include headache, nausea, and drowsiness. These side effects usually go away quickly. Because levels of sedation vary, itâs important to be monitored during surgery to make sure you donât experience complications.

More serious but rare complications include:

Headache After Tooth Extraction

Tooth extraction, even those without complications, can be a traumatic event for your body. The physical forces required often cause small fractures or tears around the site but can also cause a misalignment in the cranium known as cranial somatic dysfunction in severe cases. This can result in headaches and neck pain.

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What Risks Are Associated With A Blood Patch

  • A blood patch may cause local bruising on the back where the injection has been done.
  • A blood patch can occasionally cause backache and stiffness which can last a few days. Epidurals and blood patches do not cause long-term backache.
  • There is a small chance that another accidental dural puncture could occur when the blood patch injection is done.
  • Nerve damage, infection or bleeding into the back are very rare complications of epidurals, spinals and blood patches.

Get immediate medical help if any of the following occur after you have a blood patch

  • Difficulty passing urine.
  • Loss of sensation in your back or legs.

What Are The Most Common General Anesthesia Side Effects

What to Expect After General Anesthesia

General anesthesia is used for most major surgeries and has a very low rate of serious side effects. It does carry more risks than local or regional anesthesia, but the side effects are generally minor and pass quickly. A person who has been given general anesthesia may experience headache, nausea and tiredness, but these issues are generally temporary. Only rarely do serious issues like allergic reactions, breathing problems or strokes occur.

Temporary Side Effects

Some of the potential general anesthesia side effects are due to mechanical damage to the body from the breathing tube that the anesthetist may place down the throat and into the airway to help the patient breathe while unconscious. The insertion and removal of the tube can cause injury or irritation to the throat and larynx, and often leaves the throat feeling very sore and dry. Hoarseness, coughing, and muscle spasms in the voice box or bronchial tubes in the lungs can all occur, but are uncommon. In rare cases, the teeth or other parts of the mouth and throat may be damaged when the equipment is inserted a loose tooth could be knocked out, for example.

Serious Side Effects

Risk Factors

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Risks And Side Effects

Local anaesthetics are generally very safe and serious problems are rare.

You may have:

  • some discomfort when the injection is given
  • a tingling sensation as the medication wears off
  • possibly some minor bruising, bleeding or soreness where the injection was given

You shouldn’t experience any significant side effects.

You should move carefully until the anaesthetic has worn off as you may not notice if you injure yourself.

Some people experience temporary side effects from a local anaesthetic, such as:

Do You Have More Questions About A Headache Caused By Neck Injuries

Headaches can occur for many reasons, and this includes neck injuries. The difference between neck-related headaches and others is that symptoms occur in correlation to neck movements of some kind.

Do you have more questions about a headache caused by neck injuries? Or were you injured in a car accident and are now having cervicogenic headaches?

Call 1-800-897-8440 or fill out the form below. One of our associates would be happy to answer any questions you still have. They can also assist in finding you an experienced auto injury doctor who accepts no-fault insurance.

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How Does General Anesthetic Work

The exact mechanisms that conspire to produce the state of general anesthesia are not well known. The general theory is that their action is induced by altering the activity of membrane proteins in the neuronal membrane, possibly by making certain proteins expand.

Of all the drugs used in medicine, general anesthetics are an unusual case. Rather than a single molecule acting at a single site to produce a response, there is a huge variety of compounds, all of which generating quite similar but widespread effects, including analgesia, amnesia, and immobility.

General anesthetic drugs range from the simplicity of alcohol to the complexity of sevoflurane propane). It seems unlikely that just one specific receptor could be activated by such different molecules.

General anesthetics are known to act at a number of sites within the central nervous system . The importance of these sites on the induction of anesthesia is not fully understood but they include:

  • Cerebral cortex: The brains outer layer involved in tasks relating to memory, attention, perception among other functions
  • Thalamus: Its roles include relaying information from the senses to the cerebral cortex and regulating sleep, wakefulness, and consciousness.
  • Reticular activating system: Important in regulating sleep-wake cycles
  • Spinal cord: Passes information from the brain to the body and vice versa. It also houses circuitry that controls reflexes and other motor patterns.

When Should You Consider A Headache After Surgery Serious


If the headache symptoms do not wear off along with the anesthesia, there could be something more pressing taking place with your loved one specifically, hypoxia and or anoxic oxygen depletion. Hypoxia occurs when there is not enough oxygen in the blood to supply the vital organs of the body. In mild situations, headaches can be one of the more apparent symptoms. If not tended to quickly, this can sometimes lead to anoxic oxygen depletion, or complete loss of oxygen supply, which can lead to brain damage and be life-threatening. Hypoxia can be relative to serious conditions and diseases, but can also be a resulting complication of the medications used during anesthesia. If the headache your husband is experiencing is persistent or accompanied by confusion, rapid breathing, or discoloration, it is crucial to call 911 or for immediate help right away.

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What Are The Three Types Of Anesthesia

The anesthetist decides on the form of anesthesia depending on the surgery or procedure to be done. 3 types of anesthesia are:

  • Local anesthesia – to numb an area for minor procedures
  • Regional anesthesia – to numb a specific portion of the body
  • General anesthesia – to keep the patient unconscious for long periods

Side Effects Of Dental Anesthesia

It’s also important to discuss the potential side effects of dental anesthesia with your dental professional before undergoing any procedure. This allows you to feel prepared and confident in your treatment option, which is something to smile about.

Side effects of local anesthesia in dentistry tend to be rare. Sometimes numbness is felt beyond the affected part of the mouth. Eyelids and cheek muscles can also droop until the numbness subsides. Other less common concerns include:

  • temporarily losing the ability to blink
  • hematomas
  • a racing heartbeat
  • nerve damage

Side effects of sedation caninclude headache, nausea, and drowsiness. These side effects usually do not last long. Other side effects of sedation are:

  • A headache a few days after the procedure
  • Pain at the site of the needle
  • Difficulty urinating
  • Hematoma
  • Nerve damage

Your dental professional should monitor general anesthesia side effects during and after treatment. Here are the side effects of general anesthesia:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Confusion when regaining consciousness
  • Chills and shivering, hypothermia

Rarely, general anesthesia has the potential to cause more serious complications like postoperative delirium or cognitive dysfunction, where memory loss is more long-term.

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What Causes The Uncontrollable Shaking And Shivering After General Anesthesia

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Postoperative Headache In Elective Surgery Patients

REAL ANESTHESIOLOGIST discusses the RISK of DYING Under General Anesthesia
The safety and scientific validity of this study is the responsibility of the study sponsor and investigators. Listing a study does not mean it has been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Government. Read our disclaimer for details.
First Posted : February 27, 2015Results First Posted : January 1, 2016Last Update Posted : January 1, 2016
Condition or disease
Drug Withdrawal Headache

A dedicated team interviewed patients preoperatively and during the first five postoperative days and collected data regarding medical history, surgery, anaesthesia and the presence of postoperative headache by manual record review. The frequency of preoperative headache was assessed by asking the subjects on the appearance or not of headache within the last year. Additional information were obtained to distinguish migraine which was deemed present only when the participants reported two or more of the following specific symptoms supporting this diagnosis as proposed by the International Headache Society episodic headache with the following features: moderate or severe throbbing pain, worsened by movement, associated with nausea/vomiting, photophobia or phonophobia, with or without visual aura.

Postoperative headache was defined as a dichotomous variable by asking the participants twice daily for the first five days after anaesthesia and surgery.

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Comparison With Other Studies

Previous reports suggest that the migraine-ischemic stroke association is highest or only observable among patients with low vascular risk status .3528 To consider this matter in an exploratory analysis, we needed an estimate of stroke risk independent of migraine status. Thus, we specified and estimated a group of predictors, based on theory, that could index this risk. The probability of migraine independent perioperative stroke risk was balanced by covariates that were chosen on the basis of previously identified associations with perioperative ischemic stroke and vascular risk.111317204243444546 Our rationale was to evaluate whether the association between migraine and perioperative ischemic stroke is modified by a patients migraine independent background perioperative stroke risk. Using this stroke risk model, we found that the migraine associated perioperative ischemic stroke risk was highest among patients with a low estimated probability of perioperative ischemic stroke.

Prevention Of Common Side Effects Of General Anesthesia

The best way to prevent any unpleasant side effects or potentially dangerous complications during and after having general anesthesia is to provide your dentist anesthesiologist with a complete medical, family and social history, and to follow carefully the pre-operative instructions. If you fail to follow any of the instructions, e.g. if you eat or drink something, inform your anesthesia provider before the procedure.

Failure to report the use of drugs such as cocaine, barbiturates, heroin, or even some natural herbal remedies which interact with anesthetic drugs, may result to fatal side effects during general anesthesia.

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Epidural And Spinal Anaesthetics

An epidural anaesthetic, often referred to as an epidural, is where a local anaesthetic is continually injected through a tube into an area of the lower back called the epidural space.

A spinal anaesthetic is a single injection into a similar space in the back.

Both types of anaesthetic can be used to numb large areas of the body by stopping pain signals travelling along the nerves in the spine.

They’re often used during childbirth to ease the pain of labour or if a caesarean section is needed.

They can also be used to reduce the amount of general anaesthesia needed during some operations and can provide pain relief afterwards.

In some types of surgery, such as knee and hip replacements, they can be used in place of a general anaesthetic.


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