Toxic pneumonic headaches are a type of vascular headache, you’ve probably never heard of before. During a vascular headache, the blood vessels in the tissue around the head swell or dilate and become distended (deformed). This causes severe pain that increases with physical exertion of any kind.
Pneumonic headaches are relentlessly throbbing vascular headaches and can be as blinding and disabling as a migraine, so it can be difficult to tell them apart. In fact, migraines and cluster headaches, as well as pneumonia headaches, are all types of vascular headaches.
A toxic headache usually accompanies or is the result of a fever during an illness. Toxic chemicals introduced into the body can cause a toxic headache, as the name suggests. For example, hangover headaches are toxic headaches caused by drinking alcohol.
Additionally, many other chemicals that cause toxic headaches include insecticides, solvents (like paint thinner), lead, and even some household cleaners. However, not all toxins come from external chemicals. Toxins can and are often produced by any living organism that invades your system, as is often the case with toxic pneumonia headaches.
Pneumonic headaches are of concern because they are vascular headaches associated with pneumonia and toxins introduced into the body due to the disease you just had or are still suffering from. Pneumonia is an inflammation or infection of the lungs that is itself a dangerous disease and one of the leading causes of death even in developed countries. The many causes of pneumonia include bacteria, viruses, fungi, parasites, mycoplasmas, and other toxic pathogens.
All types of pneumonia can be accompanied by pneumonic headaches. One last point worth noting is that pain is part of the body’s alert system. Any pain associated with a disease, such as pneumonia, can be a developmental warning or an indication of an even more serious problem. Since toxic pneumonia headaches are part of an already acute illness, treatment for them should follow your doctor’s guidelines for treating pneumonia. Don’t assume that this type of headache can be treated normally, it just isn’t always the case.
So now you know exactly what a toxic pneumonic headache is and what causes it is that you are better prepared to recognize one and deal with it, if you ever have to.