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An Acute Severe Headache

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Severe headaches are a frequent presentation to the Emergency Department, accounting for around 1% of presentations. Of these, 13-16% will have a sinister underlying pathology but accurate diagnosis of headaches on the medical take remain difficult for non-specialists. A retrospective study from the UK found that, of those presenting to Emergency Department with sudden onset severe headaches, only 60% were given a specific headache diagnosis, with one third of these given their diagnoses despite an inadequate history.

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