You're likely to start by seeing your family doctor or a general practitioner. However, you may be referred to a neurologist. Here's some information to help you get ready for your appointment and to know what to expect from your doctor.
What you can do
- Be aware of any pre-appointment restrictions. When you make the appointment, ask if there's anything you need to do in advance, such as restricting your diet.
- Write down any symptoms you're experiencing, including any that may seem unrelated to the reason for which you scheduled the appointment.
- Write down key personal information, including past illnesses and operations, major stresses or recent life changes, and any medical problems that run in your family.
- Make a list of all medications, vitamins and supplements you're taking.
- Take a family member or friend along, if possible. Someone who accompanies you may remember something that you missed or forgot.
- Write down questions to ask your doctor.
Preparing a list of questions can help you make the most of your time with your doctor. For headaches associated with sexual activity, some questions to ask your doctor include:
- What is likely causing my symptoms or condition?
- Are there other possible causes for my symptoms or condition?
- What tests do I need?
- Is my condition likely temporary or chronic?
- What is the best course of action?
- What are the alternatives to the primary approach you're suggesting?
- I have these other health conditions. How can I best manage them together?
- Are there any restrictions that I need to comply with?
- Should I see a specialist?
- Is there a generic alternative to the medicine you're prescribing?
- Are there brochures or other printed material I can take? What websites do you recommend?
Don't hesitate to ask other questions, as well.
What to expect from your doctor
Your doctor is likely to ask you questions, such as:
Apr. 24, 2012
- When did you first have a sex headache?
- How quickly did your headache begin?
- When did the headache begin in relation to orgasm?
- Have your headaches been continuous or intermittent?
- Were there any symptoms besides pain?
- Have you had other types of headaches? If so, what are they like?
- Has anyone in your immediate family experienced migraine headaches or headaches associated with sexual activity?
- What, if anything, seems to improve your headaches?
- What, if anything, makes your headaches worse?
- F Longo DL, et al. Harrison's Online. 18th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2012. http://www.accessmedicine.com/resourceTOC.aspx?resourceID=4. Accessed Jan. 31, 2012.
- Headache: Hope through research. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/headache/detail_headache.htm#142883138. Accessed Jan. 31, 2012.
- Preorgasmic headache. International Headache Society. http://ihs-classification.org/en/02_klassifikation/02_teil1/04.04.01_other.html. Accessed Jan. 31, 2012.
- Orgasmic headache. International Headache Society. http://ihs-classification.org/en/02_klassifikation/02_teil1/04.04.02_other.html. Accessed Jan. 31, 2012.
- Lange SE. Primary headache disorders in the emergency department. Advanced Emergency Nursing Journal. 2011;33:237.
- Wong WS, et al. The ''other'' headaches: Primary cough, exertion, sex and primary stabbing headaches. Current Pain and Headache Reports. 2010;14:41.
- Pascual J, et al. Orgasmic headaches: Clinical features, diagnosis and management. Headache. 2000;40:491.
- Pascual J. Other primary headaches. Neurologic Clinics. 2009;27:557.
- Bartleson JD (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Feb. 14, 2012.