Cluster headache after cataract surgery

Clin J Pain. 2013 Nov;29(11):e19-21. doi: 10.1097/AJP.0b013e31828b10e9.


Background: Symptomatic cluster-like headache has been described with some ophthalmological disorders such as glaucoma, orbital myositis, posterior scleritis, enucleation, herpes zoster ophthalmicus, and cataract surgery.

Case report: We report a new case of a 79-year-old nonsmoker woman who developed cluster-like symptoms 2 days after a cataract surgery and review the 2 previously reported cases.

Discussion: The surgical technique of cataract removal involves corneal incision, which can trigger the trigeminal-autonomic reflex, a pathophysiological mechanism potentially implicated in idiopathic cluster headache. Differential diagnosis in these cases includes surgical and anesthetic complications.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Cataract / therapy
  • Cataract Extraction / adverse effects*
  • Cluster Headache / etiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Postoperative Complications / etiology*