Headache characteristics associated with cervicocerebral artery dissection

  • In a single-center study of 197 patients with acute onset unusual headache, 93 patients were diagnosed with cervicocerebral artery dissection (CAD) following magnetic resonance imaging.
  • Multivariable analysis demonstrated that unilateral headache, worsening headache, and no headache improvement by analgesia were independently associated with CAD diagnosis. No headache improvement by analgesia had the greatest sensitivity for predicting CAD, at 86%, whereas worsening headache had the greatest specificity, at 84%.
  • The researchers conclude that a diagnosis of CAD should be considered in people with these headache characteristics.