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pain in the head

My mother has been experiencing pains in the front left part of her head for some time now. The pain has first occurred about 8 years ago. It was so extreme it brought her to tears everytime it happened day after day sometimes lasting all day. Especially in the night time. She did a series of tests including MRI and CT scans which showed no signs of anything abnormal in the brain. She (my mother) eventually identified that the coldness or anything with air conditioning or simply having a fan on her head brought on the pain. She took a series of painkillers which only soothed the pain for a little while. Upon avoiding being anywhere cold, the pain went away for itself. She migrated to the U.S. about 2 years ago and the winter has not even brought on the pain as she covered her head to avoid the onslaught of this painful ordeal once again. However, as recent as yesterday the pain started coming back. She is in Trinidad and Tobago right now on holiday for the past month and the pains in the left side of her head started coming back. She is in extreme pain and I am seeking anyone's help in identifying the nature, cause and proposed treatment of this strange occurrence. Please help us. Thank You!
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Avatar universal
Hi Eamon,

Unilateral headache may be due to migraine, ear, sinus or jaw infections, temporal arteritis. Pain on one side of the head, in an elderly patient, brought about or increased by cold and during night times can well be temporal arteritis. Other signs like anemia, fever and high ESR, weight loss, sweats also may be seen. This may be accompanied by pain in the neck, back. If your mother has any of the other symptoms, you must immediately consult your GP and ask to be investigated.

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351246 tn?1379682132
Thanks for writing to the forum!

There are two main things she should look at. Consult an ENT for an internal ear infection. The other possibility is temporal arteritis.

It could also be migraine. However it could also be a migraine triggered by cold weather. Just covering the head will not help as the sinus can be exposed to cold air though the nostrils. Avoiding the cold weather and staying indoors is the best treatment.

Please let me know if there is any thing else and do keep me posted. Take care!
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