‘THUNDERCLAP’ Headaches – Probably the worst headache of your life

You’re relaxing in your favorite chair, or out with friends for coffee or perhaps enjoying a delightful soothing bath, when unexpectedly, BAM, you are struck with this horrendous pain in your head; the worst headache pain you’ve ever felt.  It’s different from a migraine, and termed a “THUNDERCLAP” headache.

These past couple of months have been hell for me and migraines, and although I’ve been lucky enough to dodge the odd day without one, I’m now contending with these sudden ‘BAM’ headaches as well.  The pain is directed in the middle of my forehead, top of my head and all of my face, not a typical migraine for me, which is bilateral.  For the last two weeks I’ve had six, and last Friday was by far the most severe, finding myself at the emergency (I avoid the ER as much as possible with the rolled eyes when you arrive with a ‘headache’, noise, lights, long waits and I’m usually forgotten about with a low priority status).

The ER doc wasn’t very obliging, and didn’t appear to be alarmed by my symptoms as I blurted out that this was the worst of any of the headaches I’ve had in the past two weeks (I googled beforehand if this type of headache had an actual name or category).

I asked if these were ‘Thunderclap”, he was skeptical, yet returned later, agreeing that it falls under the symptoms of “Thunderclap”, thus ordering a CT scan which turned up with no abnormalities.  He is arranging for an MRI, which is to follow soon.  (Soon in my city translates to waiting months or a year).

His only remedy for now was pretty much “take Tylenol and call your neurologist”.  Really helpful advice.  I see my neuro in July, and I’m not expecting a cure.

Other info: Severe Headache Expert


15 thoughts on “‘THUNDERCLAP’ Headaches – Probably the worst headache of your life

  1. Just Plain Ol' Vic says:

    Ever try any remedies like natural oils/scents. My wife has done this a few times and swears by their positive effects.


  2. anxietybug88 says:

    I hope you can find something that will help these headaches. It’s bad enough to have migraines, but unpredictable headaches like these “thunderclap” ones sounds scary. I’ll be praying for you that you can find a solution, or at least some relief!


      • anxietybug88 says:

        You’d think the people that figured out the intricacies of the human nervous system would be able to explain a headache, no matter how sudden or strange. Medical science, come on… you can do this.


        • cherished79 says:

          The ER doc was useless, we’ll see what my neurologist has to say. Last two times I visited him he was shoving the idea of using Botox treatments (I think he gets a kick-back for referrals) There is no way I am going the Botox route for migraines!

          Thanks for the comment.


  3. booguloo says:

    In my teenager grief I used to get an explosion inside my skull. After that it sounded like all the ambient noise was toned down similar to having a M80 firecracker (I’ve been told M80’s are a quarter stick of dynamite) go off too close to the noggin. Yes the explosion was only inside the head.. The first time I heard it I was afraid I had a brain aneurysm. The emergency room didn’t have a clue. There wasn’t a “primary physician” on welfare so we never followed up. It only happened like 3 times total.


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