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Title: Headache in the Emergency Department: A Multicenter Observational Study from Singapore
Authors: Kuan, Win Sen 
Kumar, Ranjeev
Yau, Ying Wei 
Ng, Wei Ming 
Chia, Dennis Wen Jie 
Ng, Ee Yang
Lather, Kanwar Sudhir 
Chua, Mui Teng 
Issue Date: 2023
Publisher: MDPI AG
Citation: Kuan, Win Sen, Kumar, Ranjeev, Yau, Ying Wei, Ng, Wei Ming, Chia, Dennis Wen Jie, Ng, Ee Yang, Lather, Kanwar Sudhir, Chua, Mui Teng (2023). Headache in the Emergency Department: A Multicenter Observational Study from Singapore. Medicina 59 (7) : 1340-1340. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: Background and Objectives: There is scarce data about the epidemiology, clinical features, investigations, diagnosis, treatment, and outcome in patients attending Singapore emergency departments (EDs) with nontraumatic headache. We sought to describe these characteristics of adult patients presenting to the ED with a primary complaint of headache. Materials and Methods: We performed a cross-sectional study on adult patients with nontraumatic headache over 4 consecutive weeks from 18 March 2019 to 14 April 2019 across four EDs in Singapore. Exclusion criteria were history of head trauma within 48 h of presentation, missing records, interhospital transfers, representation with the same headache as a recent previous visit and headache as an associated symptom. Results: During the study period, 579 patients (representing 1.8% of the total ED census) comprising 55.3% males and with a median age of 36 years presented to the four Singapore EDs with a primary complaint of nontraumatic headache. Paracetamol (41.5%), non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (34.4%) and tramadol (31.5%) were the three commonest analgesics used either singly or in combination. Prochlorperazine (22.9%) and metoclopramide (17.4%) were frequent anti-emetic adjuncts. One-third of patients had computed tomography of the brain performed, which found abnormalities among 20.9% of them. ED diagnoses of primary headache conditions were made in 73.6% of patients. Conclusions: Primary headaches constituted most ED headache diagnoses. ED imaging of selected patients yielded a relatively high pick-up rate for significant intracranial abnormalities. Opioid use for symptomatic relief of headaches in the ED was found to be high, underscoring the need for improvement in headache analgesia relief practices in the ED.
Source Title: Medicina
ISSN: 1648-9144
DOI: 10.3390/medicina59071340
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