9.1.5 Headache attributed to subdural empyema

Headache caused by a subdural empyema, usually associated with fever and symptoms and/or clinical signs of meningeal irritation and increased intracranial pressure.

Diagnostic criteria:
A. Any headache fulfilling criterion C
B. Sudural empyema has been demonstrated
C. Evidence of causation demonstrated by at least two of the following:

    1. headache has developed in temporal relation to development of the empyema, or led to its discovery
    2. headache has significantly worsened in parallel with deterioration of the empyema shown by any of the following:

      a) worsening of other symptoms and/or clinical signs arising from the empyema
      b) evidence of enlargement of the empyema
      c) evidence of rupture of the empyema

    3. headache has significantly improved in parallel with improvement in the empyema
    4. headache has either or both of the following characteristics:

      a) unilateral, or more intense on one side
      b) associated with tenderness of the skull

D. Not better accounted for by another ICHD-3 diagnosis.

Subdural empyema is often secondary to sinusitis or otitis media. It may also be a complication of meningitis.

9.1.5 Headache attributed to subdural empyema is caused by meningeal irritation, increased intracranial pressure and/or fever.