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Mumsnetters aren't necessarily qualified to help if your child is unwell. If you have any serious medical concerns, we would urge you to consult your GP.

Constant headache 8 year old

(28 Posts)
julesdavis1066 Thu 11-Feb-16 23:55:14

My 8 year old dd has had a headache now for nearly 3 weeks. It spikes at different times and she rests for hours. Very tired all the time, pale, cold extremities. Poor thing has missed most of school since this started. She's had no major colds this winter up until now except soar throat beginning of Jan.

There have been a couple of days when she seemed better but then back to where we started. She's getting really fed up, seems down; luckily last couple of afternoons she's had energy to play outside for half an hour but exhausted afterwards. She tried going into school for couple of hours last week but got if she couldn't cope (luckily school have been great.).

Focusing on diet, hydration, sleep. She's had regular Pain relief (nurofen, Calpol) but decided to stop in case this was aggravating headaches. However gave Calpol this eve as headache seemed severe.

I wondered if anyone else had similar experience and what outcome was.

Paediatrician says it's a chronic migraine (or Headache). And nit a virus related headache. How does he know? It's more a headache as no migraine symptoms (doesn't feel sick, no nausea)

AfroPuffs Fri 12-Feb-16 00:22:08

Can you try epsom salts in bath or magnesium oil rubbed on temples/shoulders etc?

I get migraines a lot and had a chronic headache (varying levels of pain) from Feb to early May last year.

It went after introducing magnesium and is my go-to solution whenever i get one now.

Poor thing. You ought to push for a head scan to make sure...

BlackSwan Fri 12-Feb-16 22:19:04

The paediatrician has diagnosed this based on what tests?
Get an MRI.

Katie0705 Sat 13-Feb-16 00:51:28

Migraine is a nasty condition and presents in many ways. Have a look at the Migraine Trust website as I found this very useful.

Never fear about going back to the GP if you are not happy. You are also entitled to ask for a second opinion. I am a Children's nurse and would encourage any parent with a sick child to hound their GP until they get the answers needed. I totally agree with the comments about getting an MRI.

Very best wishes

anywinewilldonow Sat 13-Feb-16 17:37:21

When my DD was younger, she had very similar and was eventually diagnosed with an atypical strep infection requiring 10 days of penicillin.

My DD never had classic tonsillitis or even a sore throat, but given that your DD had one, it may be worth asking the GP to do a strep test, or at least to try a course of penicillin just to rule that out.

Hope she feels better soon.

JennyOnAPlate Sat 13-Feb-16 18:03:11

At this point I would go back to the GP and ask for some tests (assuming they haven't done any already.) in your shoes I would be requesting a scan.

Onsera3 Sat 13-Feb-16 18:14:25

I was thinking that the sore throat could have been strep and she could be suffering from a complication which can take weeks to come on.

Cocolepew Sat 13-Feb-16 18:15:53

I would be expecting her to see a consultant now.

Bonkerz Sat 13-Feb-16 18:20:14

Has she had her eyesight checked recently? My DD suffered with bad headaches and being sent home from school till we got eyes checked and glasses and now it's very rare she suffers as bad

Pidapie Sat 13-Feb-16 18:32:35

I had bad headaches when I had iron deficiency. Could be worth checking. I would not leave it with "chronic headache", definitely keep investigating it.

julesdavis1066 Sat 13-Feb-16 19:14:33

Thanks for all your feedback. The consultant did a thorough examination and concluded chronic headache and the bloods came back all fine. The dietician is looking at immune system, magnesium deficiency and we'll put DD on recommended supplements next week, cutting out wheat, milk, chocolate. The good news is that she had a great Saturday and spent the whole day playing with friends. I arranged for some buddies to come over and they've all had a ball. She could not have managed this at the beginning of week. She woke with headache (level 3 she calls it), still pale but had plenty of energy today. She's tired now though so chilled bedtime routine, and fingers crossed headache subsided a bit, or at least not back up to 5 at bedtime.

julesdavis1066 Sat 13-Feb-16 19:15:58

Yes and her eyesight test was all clear.

julesdavis1066 Sun 14-Feb-16 14:26:21

Despite lovely day yesterday, when DD appeared almost her old self, she still had level 5 headache by the eve (when she needs Calpol and struggles to sleep) and mentioned again that she had a tight chest. The day had clearly exhausted her. Today quiet day; she's tired, quite chatty, still pale and headache has gone from 3 to 4 just after lunch. Now resting. Seeing GP tomorrow to discuss blood tests and see if she can be tested for anything else. When will this ever end??

anywinewilldonow Sun 14-Feb-16 14:46:15

You may have done this already, but have you checked her temperature during these episodes (and at other times to give a baseline)? If it's up even a bit, this would suggest an infectious cause rather than a migraine/eye issue.

julesdavis1066 Sun 14-Feb-16 18:05:08

Yes good point. We went for a short walk to get fresh air and DD complained of a tight chest and could only walk slowly. This is very different to last week. No change in Headache. I had pleurisy many years ago and hadn't realised at the time (no other symptoms) until I got very bad chest pains. Could be her lungs?

Stinkyfeet Sun 14-Feb-16 20:11:33

I understand how worrying this is for you, and miserable for dd.

Did the optician just carry out a sight test, or a full eye examination including looking at the back of her eyes? Did you tell the optician about the headaches?
I would be insisting on an MRI scan.

julesdavis1066 Sun 14-Feb-16 20:59:37

Yes he carried out a full examination and was made aware of her headaches. He explained he was looking for abnormalities, which he could not find. We want to eliminate any nasties so will be pushing for MRI tomorrow. She does not have stabbing pains or vomiting in morning.

The paediatrician prescribed pizotifen (1 tablet at night), but when she took it, she was completely spaced out next day, jelly legs so haven't given it again. She said her headache was a 3 in the morning (normally she scores it 3 1/3). However willing to give it a try if all else fails.

AfroPuffs Sun 14-Feb-16 21:12:21

I took pizotifen for a few nights and it helped break the cycle. It makes you zombie-like but probably worth trying really

BlueStringPudding Sun 14-Feb-16 23:44:36

Has she seen a dentist recently? DS suffered from headaches including stabbing pains for a number of weeks, and migraines were suggested. A routine dental examination found a big cavity in one of his back teeth,it was filled and the headaches disappeared immediately.

Hope you find the cause soon..

BlackSwan Mon 15-Feb-16 20:09:17

I'm glad you're pushing for an MRI. There's no substitute for doing that in order to rule out the big ticket diagnoses. She will be able to manage it awake I'm sure, if she's 8 - so really, there's no reason for them not to.

Stinkyfeet Wed 17-Feb-16 18:01:43

How did you get on at the gp, Jules?

julesdavis1066 Fri 19-Feb-16 13:56:08

The GP has referred her to another paediatrician (NHS)- 2 week wait. He recommended she continues to take pain relievers but suggested we stop pizotifen. No school this week , and so far we've managed to do normal things without usual long rests, but headache same. She seems much happier in herself and has spent time with other family members. Most interesting thing is that she was given a gentle relaxing massage this week, including heat pack on her neck, and for the first time her headache went down to 2 ('can barely feel it' she calls it). Her energy levels were back but it only lasted a day. Ok, so I'm thinking now whether she's pulled a muscle in her neck...stressed neck muscles?? She had a swimming Gala race (breaststroke race) 4 weeks ago which may have aggravated an existing neck problem?? Before the gala she was very busy at school (performance Rehearsals) and she complained of feeling bit tired, slightly absent from the group/class. Maybe this was a virus. Anyway, her auntie is giving her another gentle massage today to see if there is an improvement again.....maybe she should be taking nurofen rather than Calpol.

Cocolepew Fri 19-Feb-16 16:10:08

I know some people dont agree with it but I took my DD to an oestopath who did some gentle movements and a bit of craniel oestopathy.
DD had been complaining of a headache and it was a tight muscle in her neck.

julesdavis1066 Fri 19-Feb-16 16:29:23

Thank you, glad osteo sorted your DD. I don't why it didn't occur to me before...

Cocolepew Fri 19-Feb-16 16:43:04

Obviously still go down a medical route but it might help in the intrim smile

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