Diagnosing Pressure Headaches vs. CSF Leaks

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Key Questions
  • Why is low-pressure headache misdiagnosed as chronic migraine?
  • What is postural headache?
  • What exactly is cerebral spinal fluid (CSF)?
  • What are high- and low-pressure headaches?
  • What are the risk factors for high- and low-pressure headaches?
  • What are the symptoms of high-pressure headache (pseudotumor cerebri or idiopathic intracranial hypertension)?
  • What is papilledema and how is it used to diagnose high-pressure headache?
  • What is a spinal tap?
  • How is high-pressure headache treated?
  • What is low-pressure headache (spontaneous intracranial hypotension, or SIH)?
  • What are the treatments for low pressure, or SIH?
Interview Notes

Find more about Deborah Friedman, MD, MPH, FAAN and her work here:

Deborah Friedman

Deborah Friedman, MD, MPH

Professor of Neurology & Neurotherapeutics and Ophthalmology and Headache Specialist
University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center

Dr. Deborah Friedman is a professor of neurology & neurotherapeutics and ophthalmology at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, where she directs the Headache and Facial Pain Program and the Integrated Project Team for Intracranial Pressure Disorders. She is board-certified in neurology and headache medicine.

Dr. Friedman is also a fellow of the American Academy of Neurology, the American Headache Society, the American Neurological Association and the North American Neuro-Ophthalmology Society. She currently serves on the board of directors of the American Headache Society. She has been elected to the “Best Doctors in America” yearly since 1998 and US News and World Report Top Doctors since 2011.

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