17 answers

Head & Neck Ache After Having a Baby

Okay i had a c-section less than 3 wks ago and when i went into recovery at the hospital i have had this pain on my right temple inside my head and it wont go away and when i move my right eye it hurts worse. Last night i was eating and then stopped because of the severe sharp pain that ran on my left side from my temple to my neck into my glands. i told my doctor about the pain on my right side and he said if it doesn't go away in 3 wks then they will do a cat scan. Now i did have a spinal but i don't know if that's why my head and neck is in so much pain. Ive also taking medicine but nothing seems to help. Anybody got a clue what it could be or what to do?

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

well i went to an urgent care doctor because the pain was so bad and he said that i had fluid in both of my ears & i had swollen glads i didnt feel really sick tho. he gave me medicine and ever since that sharp pain hasnt came back. now i still do have that pain in my right eye/right temple of my head. but that might just be nerve damage. Thank you everyone for the comments & suggestions!!!

More Answers

A., I had a spinal with my third c-section and the pain I had in my lower back was so unbearable that even my pain meds (for the pain for the actual c-section) did not touch it. I was in pain like that for two weeks. I also had a week long headache, that NOTHING I took made it better or go away for that matter. I DO think every woman's experience is different and I cannot say that what you are experiencing is from the spinal. Only your doctor can tell you that IF he'll tell you at all. However, my sister is a registered nurse at the hospital I gave birth and she, upon my request, asked the anesthesiologist if my lower back pain was from the spinal. Of course, he said it was unrelated BUT I had a spinal with my second c-section and had NO pain, no complications of any kind. The pain was debilitating in my back. The week long headache was no picnic either. I DID research on the headache and found that some women DO have what's called or known as a "spinal headache." I was fine if I was lying down, or sleeping but once awake and sitting up, the pain in my head was also to die for. I wish I could be more helpful. I can tell you that within 2 weeks the pains (back and head) went away. Since you say it's been 3 weeks now, I'd insist to your doctor that he (or she) take this seriously and INSIST that a ct-scan or MRI be taken. You should be happy now, not suffering.

Someone else posted about needing a blood patch, and that was my first thought as well. Before I had my son, I had asked about risks of the epidural, and this (headaches that won't go away) was mentioned. The anesthesiologist would be the person to talk to about getting the blood patch, if it is appropriate. 3 weeks is too long to wait.

find a licensed massage therapist or acupuincturist who does craniosacral therapy. It helps with birth trauma to body.

When the spinal was done some of the cerebral spinal fluid may have leaked out. This happened to me when I had my first (son 3 1/2 year ago) during the insertion of the epidural. Ever watch the cartoons when one of them gets rammed in on the head with a sledgehammer - that instant intense pain, that is what I felt. It went away a few days later. I would still go back to your doctor and have the cat scan done. It's probably nothing to worry about it, but it's nice to be on the safe side. Best of luck with your little one! If you don't already have it get The Happiest Baby on the Block by Dr. Harvey Karp. It's the best gift I got after my son was born. They have in paperback and in video format.

-- Barbi

I had a spinal headache after a c/s delivery 4 months ago. My first symptom was severe neck and shoulder pain. Then I got more typical headache pain to the point that I was throwing up. I treated it by laying down and increasing my caffeine intake. The caffeine helped greatly. Now 4 months later I'm having neck & ear pain that feels like my glands are swollen, but I'm wondering if it was not related to my delivery.

Congratulation on your little one.

yes....you could have what is called a "spinal headache". The anesthesiologist needs to see you. They will probably take some blood from a vein in your arm and inject it into your back....this is called an epidural blood patch. The headache will go away immediately. You can also try drinking lots of fluids, especially caffeine, and laying down....i'm betting it feels better when you lay down. But the blood patch is the best treatment. Call the hospital where you had the procedure and ask to speak to the anesthesiologist on call.

You need a blood patch! What happens is the spinal fluid leaks out and causes your brain to rest against your skull which affects your nerves. Please ask for a blood patch.

sounds like you have an epidural headache. This is one of the common side effects they downplay, but basically a leakage of spinal fluid can cause an excruciating headache.

If this is what it is, you will need to go in for a procedure to fix it. Call your ob right away. The pain should stop as soon as they fix it.

Congrats on your new baby!

I am 5wks after my second c-section. One thing the anesathist ( i cant spell) said to me was if i had a headache within 24hrs of the c-section to tell them right away. SOmething about having a bad reaction to the Spinal.

Another thought is maybe they didn't hit the right spot with the spinal.

I have been hearing more and more complaints about spinals. I personally after the first one couldn't stand to have anyone pat me on the back, it hurt. Also, had alot of backpain.

Definitly keep on them about the headache and get your cat scan. Don't let your doctor dismiss your concerns because of being a women or just having a baby.

When you were out you have no idea what position your body was in-go see a Chiropractor- 3rd tri you are so vulnerably because of all the hormones to make you ligaments lax, check with International Chiropractic Pedatric assoc- their members are trained to take care of this, really. k

I would recommend to visit a good chiropractor. check with your med. insurance co, and get the list of the chiropractors. Majority large Ins. Co. caver up to 6 chiropractor's visits. I trusted mine with my two year old.
Best wishes!

Hi A.,

I think this could be a side effect of an epidural. When I was pregnant the first time, the hospital required everyone who considered an epidural to review a video and sign off about side effects, and this sort of thing is what they listed. I had read at the time that it could vary greatly in terms of length afterward. Some people had no side effects, others had major stuff for months. I hope you can find some relief, especially as you're healing from surgery and caring for a newborn. Best of luck.

Don't want to scare you but it could be a blood clot in your head or neck causing the pain. I have a friend that just had surgery and has this pain. They found a blood clot in her neck. I wouldn't be to active until I knew for sure what is wrong. Also it could be nerve damage. Any time you have a spinal done you take the risk of nerve damage. The doctor should have went over all the risks with you before you had it done. I wouldn't wait 3 weeks to find out what's wrong. If my doctor didn't want to do the CT then I would find one that will. Better safe than sorry.

I remember being told that having an epidural could cause a severe headache... but the reasoning had to do with there being a leakage of spinal fluid at the point of the injection... if I remember right. I don't know if that is what is going on (obviously) but I would specifically ask about it, and see what the doc says at that point.

Or perhaps if you know the anesthesiologist who performed the procedure, you could contact his/her office and ask about it.

You have a spinal headache and you need to cal your doctor and explain your symptoms. I had the same problem, and waited too long. They can do a blood patch that can take the at headache away. You may not remember, but it is a side effect that can happen from a spinal/epidural.
I hope this helps...

I don't want to scare you but I would suggest you INSIST that your doctor order a CAT scan of your head immediately. If he will not, find a doctor who will. A neurologist may treat this with more caution if you need to call one in to get that CAT scan. If that is not feasible, go to the emergency room and get one there.
After the trauma of birth, even with a C section there could be a blood clot or even an aneursysm that needs to be identified. It could be putting pressure on the optic nerve. Don't wait on this.

Hi A.,

I was just reading your posting and I also had a c-section (spinal) with the same pain that you are having in my neck and head. I had the MRI and all was good there. The hospital tried everything moraphine etc. and still had the pain. I then remembered that I had not been given my allergy medicine in 5 days, so the nurses and doctors (hospital) then gave it to me and sure enough the pain started to ease within a few hours. The next day I felt so much better and was able to go home. Just thought that this may be the same for you. I have taken the same allergy medicine for about 4 years everyday and then nothing in the hospital. I hope that your pain gets taken care of soon, as I know this is hard to deal with when you have a new baby that needs you now more then ever. Congratulations on your new bundle of joy, they are truly a blessing from god!!! :-)

God Bless you and yours,

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