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Post-spinal headache, also known as post-spinal headache, is a type of headache that appears a few hours or days after administration of the anesthetic and may disappear spontaneously within 2 weeks. In this type of headache, the pain is more intense when the person is standing or sitting and improves soon after the person lies down.
Despite being uncomfortable, post-spinal headache is considered a complication due to the technique used in the procedure, being reported by some people who have undergone this type of anesthesia, and it passes after a few weeks of supportive treatment, being recommended the use of medicines that help relieve pain faster.
The main symptom of post-spinal headache is, in fact, headache, which can appear up to 5 days after the administration of anesthesia, being more common to appear after about 24 to 48 hours. The headache usually affects the frontal and occipital region, which corresponds to the back of the head, and can also extend to the cervical region and shoulders.
This type of headache usually gets worse when the person sits or stands and improves when lying down and can be accompanied by other symptoms such as stiff neck, nausea, increased sensitivity to light, tinnitus and decreased hearing ability.
Causes of post-spinal headache
The cause that leads to headache after spinal anesthesia is still not very well understood, however it has been explained according to theories, the main one being that at the time the puncture is performed at the site in which anesthesia is applied, there is extravasation of cerebrospinal fluid, the CSF, decreasing the pressure at the site and promoting a deviation in the brain structures related to pain sensitivity, resulting in headache, in addition to the loss of CSF is greater than than its production, with unbalance.
In addition, some studies report that there are some factors that may favor the development of post-spinal headache, such as the use of large-gauge needles, repeated attempts at anesthesia, age and gender of the person, degree of hydration, extravasation large amount of CSF at the time of puncture and pregnancy.
How the treatment is done
The headache after spinal anesthesia usually disappears after a few weeks, however it is recommended that the person drink plenty of fluids to help relieve faster. In addition, the use of medicines that help relieve headache and other associated symptoms may be recommended.
When hydration and the use of medication indicated by the doctor are not enough, an epidural blood patch, also known as a blood patch, may be recommended. In this case, 15 ml of blood is collected from the person and then punctured at the site where the first puncture was performed.Some studies indicate that through this technique it is possible to temporarily increase the epidural pressure, helping to fight the headache.