Carotidynia

The existence of carotidynia as a single pathological entity has been appropriately questioned. y , y Acute monophasic carotidynia may have a viral etiology. Carotidynia often means nonspecific neck pain with carotid artery tenderness. Many cases of recurring carotidynia, however, are due to migraine. At present, the epidemiology and risk factors are not known. The clinical features of carotidynia generally include neck pain and carotid artery tenderness, particularly near the bifurcation. Occasionally, there is face pain rather than neck pain. A number of temporal patterns have been reported, with pain lasting seconds, minutes, hours, days, weeks, or months. Some cases of carotidynia may be associated with migraine. Symptomatic causes of carotidynia include carotid dissection, stenosis or occlusion with or without intraplaque hemorrhage, aneurysm, fibromuscular dysplasia, giant cell arteritis, and postcarotid endarterectomy. If the temporal profile suggests a monophasic illness rather than a recurrent condition, anatomical investigation, including ultrasound, MRI, MRA, or angiography, may be necessary. Indomethacin is often effective in treating the pain of carotidynia and migraine treatment may also be effective. y , y Because carotidynia does not represent a single illness, the prognosis depends on the cause.

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