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Postgrad Med J. 1971 August; 47(550): 556–561.
PMCID: PMC2467254

Psychological aspects of headache


Headache is one of the most common symptoms encountered in clinical practice. Its conceptual problems are those of pain in general and some of the theories concerning pain, especially those attempting to relate psychological and physical aspects, are considered.

The classifications which have been suggested for headaches associated with emotional causes are described and it is shown that these are of limited clinical value. Some of the psychogenic causes of headache are considered and the associations of the symptom with various psychiatric illnesses are described. Headache is especially likely to be found with depressive illnesses. The treatments for various psychological types of headache are reviewed.

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