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Intracranial Pressure Headaches


​Pressure in the brain can increase after an injury or medical condition. When the pressure becomes too much, it leads to intracranial pressure headaches.

Intracranial pressure headaches cannot be prevented. Parents should seek medical attention when they notice the symptoms of intracranial pressure in their child. If left untreated, this high-pressure headache can injure the spinal cord or brain.

Causes of Intracranial Pressure Headaches

Several things can lead to intracranial pressure headaches. Other causes can include:

  • Too much fluid around the brain
  • Tumors
  • Bleeding and/or swelling in the brain
  • Brain injury
  • Hydrocephalus
  • Aneurysms

Symptoms of Intracranial Pressure Headaches

Of course, head pain comes with intracranial pressure headaches, but your child may also experience:

  • Vomiting
  • Weakness with moving or talking
  • Blurred vision
  • Low alertness
  • Changes in behavior
  • Lack of energy

Treatment of Intracranial Pressure Headaches

As intracranial pressure is very serious, there are multiple tests that may be performed to determine the best treatment. Imaging testing may help pinpoint where and what treatment needs to occur. A spinal tap may also be performed to help measure the pressure of the cerebrospinal fluid, or fluid around the brain.

Medication may also be given to help reduce swelling. If extra fluid or blood is found around the brain, some of this fluid will be removed to help decrease pressure inside the skull. In extremely rare cases, part of the skull may be removed to help ease pressure.

Treatment for underlying conditions will also be addressed if they are the cause on the intracranial pressure.​​

Pediatric Neurology